Forest business supports the protection of the Dvinskiy Forest
Important decisions were taken at a meeting of the top-managers of GC Titan, Arkhangelsk PPM JSC and Lesozavod 25 CJSC with representatives of environmental organizations WWF Russia and Greenpeace Russia, which took place on December 21 in Arkhangelsk. The discussion was initiated by the loggers and aimed at conservation of intact forest landscapes, as well as the development of sustainable and environmentally responsible management in already developed (secondary) forests of the Arkhangelsk region.
Representatives of the forest industry companies have declared their readiness to help with the establishment of the Protected Area in the watershed of the Northern Dvina and the Pinega rivers, where is the Dvinskiy Forest – the unique pattern of pristine northern European taiga still remained. As all the meeting’s participants agreed, only the obtaining of the official status ensures the maintenance of high conservation values of this area.
The Dvinskiy Forest is extremely valuable because it has not been affected by human activity and remained unchanged for thousands of years. However, the decreasing of available forest resources in the region, where the forest industry is essential, forced loggers to move in the last patches of European wild taiga. At the same time FSC-certified companies must meet the high requirements of environmental responsibility and to take measures to reduce the negative impact of logging activities on forest ecosystems.
«We clearly understand that it is not possible to preserve the whole intact forest landscape due to negative socio-economic consequences. That is why we consider the establishment of the Protected Area in the most valuable part of the Dvinskiy Forest and sustainable timber harvesting with biodiversity conservation in the rest part of the area as a trade-off between economic and environmental interests», - said Andrey Shchegolev, the Head of the Forest Program of WWF Russia Barents branch.
Environmental organizations have been working for the long time to preserve the Dvinskiy Forest. Intact forests regulate the climate of the territory, reduce the concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, ensure diversity of flora and fauna and serve as a habitat for many rare and endangered species. After a comprehensive research of the area WWF Russia prepared justification materials, which received the positive opinion of the State Ecological Expertise in 2013.
«From the very beginning of our work towards the conservation of this area, FSC played an important role in negotiations with forest industry companies. For example, agreements with logging companies to refuse logging in the Intact Forest Landscape, signed within the framework of FSC , formed the basis of the area for the future reserve», - said Nikolay Shmatkov, WWF Russia Forest Program Director.
WWF Russia invites all other the companies working in the watershed of the Northern Dvina and the Pinega rivers to a dialogue for finding compromise solutions on the forest conservation.
WWF Russia appeals to the Governor of the Arkhangelsk region Igor Orlov with request to establish the Protected Area in the Dvinskiy Forest in the year 2017, which was declared as the Year of Ecology in Russia and the Year of Protected Areas.