Mountain Forests Working Group (2012-2019)

Chair: Italy 

Mountain forests represent a distinguishing element of the Alpine region. If the forests are managed sustainably, they can carry out many important functions such as soil conservation, protection against natural disasters, renewable sources of raw materials, energy sources and employment opportunities, mitigation of climate change, ecosystem conservation and protection of alpine landscape.
 
The Working Group "Mountain Forests" was established in 2012 within the scope of the Alpine Convention’s Protocol Mountain Forests and is contributed to the intersectional cooperation according to the Multiannual Work Programme of the Alpine Convention, particularly in areas of climate change, biodiversity, tourism and green economy.  

The Working Group contributed to the development of forest system policies with regard to adaptation and potential absorption. This was done in cooperation with the Action Plan on Climate Change in the Alps and with a goal to promote the conservation of forest areas that are exposed to natural hazards and to maintain the protective function of forests. The tasks also included the harmonization of instruments for monitoring climate change impact. The Working Group also oversaw the issues related to the production of raw materials and renewable energy sources and promoted the use of wood.  
 
Mountain forests are a distinguishing element of the alpine landscape and have an important recreational function. Therefore, the Working Group was also active in the field of tourism. In particular, the WG collected policies and good practices related to the role that Alpine forests play toward a low carbon, sustainable and social inclusive economy for the Alpine area.   

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