Carpathian Mountain Countries Agree on Sustainable Forest Management
27 May 2011: At the Third Meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 3) to the Framework Convention on the Protection and Sustainable Development of the Carpathians (Carpathian Convention), environment ministers and experts from Central and Eastern Europe discussed sustainable development of the Carpathian mountain region, and adopted a protocol on sustainable forest management (SFM).
The Protocol seeks to identify, protect and maintain or enlarge forest cover as well as improve protective forest functions, such as preventing floods and landslides, water cycle regulation and carbon sequestration.
Jozsef Nagy, Minister of Environment, Slovakia, commented that COP 3 was able to provide a vital platform for the future cooperation of the Carpathian States to maintain sustainable development of the region.
The Carpathian mountain range hosts natural and semi-natural forests and many species, including the EU's largest populations of brown bears, wolves and imperial eagles, a globally threatened species. The Carpathian forests are a critical link between the forests of the North and those of the West and South-west of Europe.
The meeting was held in Bratislava, Slovakia, from 25-27 May 2011, hosted by the Government of the Slovak Republic in its capacity as president of the Convention. COP 3 will set the policy direction of the Convention for the next three years (2012-2014), during which time Romania will hold the presidency. In addition to Slovakia and Romania, the Members of the Convention are: the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, Serbia and Ukraine. The Interim Secretariat of the Carpathian Convention is administered by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) in Vienna, Austria. [UN Press Release] [UN in Vienna Press Release] [COP 3 Website]