2013 is a special year for forests, with many activities and initiatives underway to recognize and strengthen the important role forests play in our lives. The 21st of March will mark the first ever official International Day of Forests and the Tree, as declared in November 2012 by the General Assembly of the United Nations. 2013 will also mark several achievements for forests and the forest sector including:
A pan-European framework agreement to ensure that forests are managed responsibly.
A new ECE/FAO work programme, encompassing sustainable forest management as well as the sound and legal use of forest products, for raw material and energy, and forest services.
An Action Plan for the forest sector, to promote the role of forests in a green economy.
The 20th anniversary of the European Forest Institute, commemorating two decades of research and policy advice.
In this context and following the success of the first European Forest Week (EFW), which took place in Rome, Italy, in October 2008, a second EFW will be held on 9-13 December 2013 to further highlight the importance of forests for our environment and societies and the achievements of the forest community. This will be in parallel to “Metsä2013”, the joint session of the ECE Timber Committee and the FAO European Forestry Commission, to be held in Rovaniemi, Finland. The European Forest Week will be celebrated throughout Europe with special events taking place in Rovaniemi.
Some fifteen supporting organizations met on 19 February to share ideas, contribute suggestions and plan events and celebrations for the European Forest Week. They also discussed key messages to highlight the healthy state of Europe’s forests and to attract public attention to how forests, forest products and services contribute to a green economy and to maintaining a healthy society.
Governments, international organizations, NGOs, schools, and other groups are invited to contribute to celebrating the Week. Details about key messages and other information will be made available soon.
The European Forest Week is a landmark opportunity to raise awareness and strengthen political commitment and action to continue the work towards sustainable forest management.
For more information, please contact:
Communications and Intergovernmental Affairs Officer
UNECE/FAO Forestry and Timber Section
Phone: +41 (0)22 917 3922
 Confederation of European Private Forest Owners (CEPF), Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI), European Forest Institute (EFI), European Network of Forest Entrepreneurs (ENFE), European State Forest Association (EUSTAFOR), Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), FOREST EUROPE, Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), Geneva Environment Network (GEN), International Forestry Students' Association (IFSA), International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO), Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD).
United Nations Economic Commission for Europe
Palais des Nations,
CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland
Tel.: +41 (0) 22 917 44 44
Fax: +41 (0) 22 917 05 05
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