Selfoss Declaration on sustainable forestry in the Nordic region

This report reflects on the achievements of the Selfoss Declaration on sustainable forestry in the Nordic region, made in 2008 by the Ministers of Forestry in the Nordic countries and the following recommendations on how to implement the intention of the declaration.

The question is, did the forestry sector focus on the resolution acknowledged by the forestry ministers in the Declaration, and furthermore, how did it affect the forestry sector in the Nordic countries?

The Selfoss Declaration initiated a lot of activities, financed with funds from the Nordic Council of Ministers and incisive actions in organizing the forest research cooperation across national boundaries within the Nordic neighboring countries.

Based on this experience, it seems important that the forestry ministers continue to take an active part in visualizing where Nordic cooperation should head in the future.

Download report HERE

Norway’s minister Sylvi Listhaug in Brussels

Thursday 13 November 2014, Agriculture and Food Minister Sylvi Listhaug will be in Brussels for opening the seminar ” Forests and the bioeconomy : future steps ” in the European Parliament , organized by the European Forest Institute and Think Forest. She will then meet the European Commission’s new agriculture commissioner , Phil Hogan .


New publication on the future of the European forest-based sector

The publication focuses on the need to rethink  the outlook for European forest-based sector, as well as on raising some issues that are still neglected.  The publication draws attention to the need to update methods used for forest sector outlook studies, especially pointing to the importance of using also systematic foresight analysis in these.

Read the report PUB

The report‘s main outcomes will be presented at the ThinkForest seminar “Forests and the bioeconomy: future steps” in the European Parliament, in Brussels on 13 November 2014

Information about the event here

The Nordic Council of Ministers Publications Catalogue 2014 is now out and it contains a lot of interesting publications!

The Publications Unit at the Nordic Council of Ministers publishes between 150 and 200 publications annually of which around 100 are published in the TemaNord series and Nord. Of these publications 50–60% are published in English.

The Publications Catalogue 2014 contains information and links about publications on ten different topics. Publications in the category of Fishery and Aquaculture, Agriculture, Food and Forestry are listed under chapter 3 pp. 21.

Forests and the bioeconomy: future steps

You can register for the November ThinkForest event- Forests and the bioeconomy: future steps.

The European forest-based sector is undergoing more significant structural changes than for decades, and the next 20 years are likely to change the sector even more. Many of these changes originate outside the sector itself: the need to move societies towards a more resource-efficient bioeconomy, the new economic role of Europe in a globalised world, and the impact of new technologies.

Against this background, ThinkForest discusses ‘Forests and the bioeconomy: Future steps’.

The event will be held at the European Parliament in Brussels, Belgium (Jòzsef Antall Building, Room 6Q1) and it will focus on following points:

  • Experiences from the forest and bioeconomy strategies
  • What does science say about the future of the forest-based sector?
  • Outlook for the European forest-based sector in the bioeconomy
  • What policy measures do we need to take?

Hosted by Christofer Fjellner, MEP
Opening by Göran Persson, President of ThinkForest
Keynote by Sylvi Listhaug, Minister of Agriculture and Food, Norway

Registration and more information HERE

SNS at IUFRO World Congress in Salt Lake City

This year’s IUFRO world congress was held in Salt Lake City (Utah, USA) and brought together some 4000 participants. Researchers from all over the world gathered to share their knowledge and experience related to forest research. This was a great opportunity for networking and information sharing. The SNS secretariat, represented by Inga Bödeker and Jonas Rönnberg, was also present at the event. SNS hosted its own booth where the strategy for 2014-2017 was presented and latest updates about the organization were spread. Here are some views and updates on what SNS achieved during the congress:

Interesting discussions:

We had the opportunity to talk to a wide range of SNS – funded researchers and listened to their presentations. Topics ranged from watershed ecology in forests with its role in clean water supply ; the ecological impact of dead wood on the forest floor and in the soil especially on forest soil C storage via Ecosystem services and their impact in Bioeconomy; to other topics like: implementing climate change in forest policy in Sweden and how to model different scenarios of forestry and society (and climate) to be able to make the best policy decision for a safe future for our forests and the society.

This shows that SNS supports a wide thematic range of forest research, where all topics are equally important for a healthy environment and ecosystem services to society,  climate change and sustainable forestry that will enable the bioeconomy.

The Bioeconomy side event organized by SNS and Taylor and Francis, promoting the special issue on Bioeconomy 29 (4):

This side-event was a set of lectures given by different experts in the field. Bioeconomy can have different definitions and it often depends on who you talk to.

For some it is simply biotechnology, for others it is the development of a new product from biomass to sell on the market. Some only regard the social aspects: why do we need to implement the Bioeconomy?

But regarding the forestry sector: Aren’t all these aspects based on a sustainable forestry? During this side event all these aspects where highlighted and discussed by presenting the 5 top Research Articles from the special issue on bioeconomy 29 (4)


Inga (first left) hosting the SNS- SLU booth during the IUFRO congress.Photo: I.Wallin


Inga’s personal impressions: 

SNS already has a great overview of the importance of all the different aspects in forest research described above and how they integrate into a sustainable forestry that positively impacts society.

What I found striking though is that there seem to be silos between the researchers of these different areas in forest research. For example, researchers in forest policy that are working with climate change and want to use the forest as main carbon (C)-sink do not take the forest soil into account even though it contains manifolds more C than the above ground biomass (trees). On the other hand, many forest-soil scientists do not know how to actually implement their research findings into forest policy. It is often difficult to know how and where to communicate their findings in a good way in order for them to be heard not only by fellow researchers in the field but also by policy makers.

Here SNS could possibly help and step up by connecting different research areas by networking and matchmaking activities in the future. More so, this will hopefully contribute to a joint discussion on climate change, mitigating C emissions, bioeconomy and forest policy on a Nordic level.

Overall conclusion

In conclusion, all aspects are important: from sustainable biomass production with least environmental impact (sustainable forestry) via the technical research and development towards the social level by implementing and tying the forest sector to bioeconomy.  During the IUFRO congress it became very clear that SNS has a very important role to play not only in Nordic but also in international forest research. SNS will continue facilitating networking and research by co-funding quality research, actively participating in forest policy and research activities in the European Union and beyond.

NordGen Thematic Day in Stockholm

Updates on NordGen’s thematic day that was held in Stockholm on the 9th of October are now available on the NordGen homepage (NOTE: the information is available in Norwegian only).
Read the updates HERE


Where will New Nordic Food be in ten years? Does the Nordic kitchen live up to the ideals that started the whole Nordic food movement ten years ago? And how can we get more social advantage out of the potential inherent in the concept of “the Nordic”? The Nordic Council of Ministers will explore these questions in a series of workshops in the coming months.

Find out more HERE

A new bioeconomy in the Baltic Sea Region – doing a lot with little

Nordic networking met German financial muscle at a bioeconomy seminar in Berlin, the third event in a series of forums designed to promote the move towards a sustainable biobased economy in the Baltic Sea Region.

Read full article HERE

Fruitful outcome of the NordGen Forest Conference in Son, Norway this September

The conference “Need for seed – Nordic forests in coming decades” was convened on 8-9 September 2014 in Son, Norway with around 50 engaged participants. The two interesting days were packed with interesting presentations and valuable participation from the audience.

More information on the outcome of the conference can be found HERE