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Boreal Forests

Boreal Forests in the UNECE region

Boreal forests, also known as Taiga, circle the Northern Hemisphere to form a ring around the North Pole. They are part of the largest terrestrial biome, accounting for 27% of the world’s total forest area. The Russian Federation, Canada, and the United States account for the majority (93%) of the global boreal forest area.

Boreal Forests

Although boreal forests grow more slowly on average than their temperate and tropical counterparts, together with their soils and peatlands, they form the largest terrestrial carbon storehouse on earth. Boreal forests shelter a distinctive biodiversity system including iconic wildlife species such as wild forest reindeer, wolverine, lynx, beaver, brown bear and the Siberian tiger. They also provide essential products and services and secure the livelihoods of many rural and indigenous communities.

In short: they are crucial for sustainable development in the entire boreal region and beyond.

Boreal Forests Infographic

Team of Specialists on Boreal Forests

The Team of Specialists on Boreal Forests was established at Forêt2019 - the joint session of the ECE Committee on Forests and Forest Industry and the FAO European Forestry Commission, which took place in November 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland.
The Team has four main objectives:

  • Contribute to science and policy cooperation on boreal forests, while reducing duplication of efforts and encouraging the pursuit of cost-effective approaches for circumboreal cooperation;
  • Increase collaboration with the International Boreal Forest Research Association (IBFRA) and other boreal-related research organizations, in order to strengthen science and policy cooperation with regards to the boreal biome;
  • Improve awareness and understanding of the role boreal forests play in global issues such as climate change and the bioeconomy, as well as addressing the challenges reflected in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development;
  • Advise the ECE/FAO Forestry and Timber Section on any matters related to boreal forests within the integrated programme of work.

The Team of Specialists on Boreal Forests will bring bring together the expertise and ideas of national boreal forest experts from both the policy and scientific field. Nominated experts are expected to participate in team meetings as well as the work described in the mandate.




Meetings & Events

ToS meetings:

Events on boreal forests: