On the beautiful island of Vilm, the second Beech Forest of Europe Workshop has started. Attended by 30 European Beech Forest Experts, the workshop focused on the first day on the current challenges to the Old-Growth forests. Deforestation in Romania, Natura2000 issues, weakness of the FSC network, Illegal logging in Ukraine caused by economic factors, illegal logging in Austria by private forest owners, pressure on Old-Growth forests in the name of climate change mitigating pressures and many more problems were discussed.

On the second day, we discussed not only the different monitoring schemes for Beech Forest but also the idea of establishing and agreeing upon a common European Beech Forest Quality Standard and Audit system. This standard will be developed as a joint project by the Beech Forest Network of Europe and the European Wilderness Society based upon the feedback and input from the members of the network.

The workshop ended with a Memorandum calling for the ending of legal and illegal logging of old-growth forests in Romania , especially in protected areas and a Resolution of Vilm outlining the creation of a European Beech Forest Network association.

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Max A. E. Rossberg is an avid WIlderness Advocates with extensive experience in Sustainable Tourism Strategies and Multistakeholder planning processes.

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