Relocation Effects of the EU Biodiversitity Strategy 2030
Assessment of possible relocation effects from the implementation of the EU-COM proposals on the EU Biodiversity Strategy 2030 (EU-BDS) on forestry and forests in third countries
The overarching objective of the EU Biodiversity Strategy 2030 (EU-BDS) is to protect nature’s biodiversity and to halt and reverse ecosystem degradation in the EU member states. The implementation of additional forest protection and restoration measures will have a negative impact on the roundwood production of the EU member states. Therefore, the aim of this project is to quantify shifts in roundwood production from the EU to third countries and to assess possible biodiversity impacts in the affected countries.
Background and Objective
The overarching objective of the EU Biodiversity Strategy 2030 (EU-BDS) is to protect nature’s biodiversity and to halt and reverse ecosystem degradation in the EU member states. It aims to identify pathways to recover biodiversity and ecosystems in the EU through enhanced protection and restoration. Key elements of the strategy include the creation of more strictly protected areas on at least 30% of terrestrial and marine surface and a stricter protection of European primary and old-growth forests.
The implementation of additional forest protection and restoration measures will have a negative impact on the roundwood production of the EU member states. Consequently, it can be assumed that, at least, part of the roundwood production will be relocated to so-called third countries outside the EU. The resulting relocation effects bear the risk of biodiversity loss in the affected third countries. The positive biodiversity effects from the implementation of the EU-BDS could thus be counteracted by negative biodiversity effects in third countries that are characterized by a less effective sustainable forest management.
Specific risks include an increasing threat of endangered species, a reduction of intact forest areas together with increasing forest degradation and net deforestation. Against this background, it is important to analyse the global impacts of EU-BDS. Therefore, the aim of this project is to quantify shifts in roundwood production from the EU to third countries and to assess possible biodiversity impacts in the affected countries.
In 2020, researchers of the Thünen Institut of Forestry started to analyze possible leakage effects from the implementation of the EU-BDS. The results of this study have been published in German and English in the Thünen Working Paper series (number 159 (en) and 159a (de)).Currently, the study is revised, extended and updated based on new data and by considering two alternative implementation strategies of the EU-BDS.
Data and Methods
In a first step, two different German roundwood production scenarios due to two alternative implementation scenarios of the EU-BDS are estimated. To estimate alternative levels of roundwood productions, three measures to intensify forest protection are combined. Thereby, scope and extent of the implementation is varied in terms of: (i) proportion of protected forest area, (ii) proportion of strictly protected areas with very high conservation value including "old-growth forests", and (iii) management of protect areas dedicated to roundwood production. Depending on the scenario assumptions, the limitations in regard to forest use and thus, roundwood production varies between the two alternative scenarios and over time. The results obtained for Germany are transferred to the roundwood production of the EU member states.
In a second step, the impact of a reduced EU roundwood production on global forest product markets is assessed. Possible relocation effects are quantified with the help of the Global Forest Products Model (GFPM). The GFPM is a global partial equilibrium model for forest products markets which was adopted and further developed at the TI-WF. Wood production and trade flows are simulated in one reference and the two alternative scenarios which considers the implementation of the EU-BDS in varying intensities. Subsequently, the occurrence and magnitude of relocation effects in third countries are derived from the difference of roundwood production between the reference scenario and the alternative scenarios.
In a third step, the impacts from the relocation of roundwood production to third countries are analyzed and classified. The assessment of the impacts is carried out using a set of indicators to cover the topics of (i) governance, (ii) sustainable forest management, (iii) biodiversity, (iv) forest condition, (v) deforestation pressure as well as (vi) socio-economic aspects.
- Dieter, Matthias WF Institute of Forestry
- Fischer, Richard WF Institute of Forestry
- Günter, SvenWF Institute of Forestry
- Iost, SusanneWF Institute of Forestry
- Schweinle, Jörg WF Institute of Forestry
- Seintsch, Björn WF Institute of Forestry
- Weimar, Holger WF Institute of Forestry
- Zhunusova, ElizaWF Institute of Forestry
5.2020 - 9.2022
Project status: ongoing