The protection of old-growth European beech forests was a long process that stretched over several decades. In the newly published video, developed by Kalkalpen National Park with the support of the Interreg project BEECH POWER, you can learn about the incredible story of expansion of the European beech, and the great value of the UNESCO World Natural Heritage Site ‘Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe‘.
The story about the European beech forests begins 12 000 years ago, at the end of the last ice age. Starting from a few isolated ice-free refuge areas, the European beech expanded to almost the whole continent thanks to its enormous competitiveness. A unique phenomenon in the world! However, human intervention has caused the natural European beech forests to largely disappear. Such is the case that today, primeval and old-growth beech forests are extremely rare and they are endangered. Therefore, it became necessary to actively protect the last untouched and nearly untouched beech forests in Europe. Thus, in 2007 the UNESCO World Heritage Committee designated these ecosystems in Slovakia and Ukraine as a World Natural Heritage. Today, the World Heritage property of European beech forests includes a total of 41 protected areas within 12 European countries.
Enjoy this short video to learn more about European beech forests. Share it with your friends and help us inspire more people to protect these incredible ecosystems!
BEECH POWER for beech forests
The BEECH POWER project is the result of an international need of cooperation to safeguard the last old-growth beech forest ecosystems in times of rapidly growing global demands for timber and tree biomass. It aims to raise awareness as well as actively engage stakeholders of UNESCO World Heritage beech forests, as well as the general public in the protection of these unique ecosystems.
The European Wilderness Society is also leading the project Multi-perspective view of Biodiversity in Forests. This is a pilot project is to develop, by connecting forestry and nature conservation experts, proposals for the conservation and improvement of fauna biodiversity in forests and forest margins, whereby forms of cultivation adjacent to the forest are taken into account integratively.