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Life Prognoses

Strengthening the protection of primary and primeval forests in Europe in designated UNESCO World Heritage sites

The project

In order to stop the continuing decline in primary forest area, the Life Prognoses project has set itself the goal of raising awareness of the importance of the ecosystem services provided by the primary forest ecosystem and communicating this to political decision-makers and the general public.

The UNESCO World Heritage network currently includes 41 primeval beech forest protected areas in 12 European countries. Primeval beech forests in 8 countries are being analysed as part of Life Prognoses. In Austria, the Kalkalpen National Park, which is also a partner in the project, is home to the largest primeval beech forest in the Alps with an area of 5,252 hectares. Other test regions of the project are located in Belgium, Bulgaria, Germany, Italy, Romania, the Czech Republic and Ukraine.

Our activities in the project

The project focuses on the UNESCO World Heritage sites "Ancient beech forests and primeval beech forests of the Carpathians and other regions of Europe". A first milestone is the standardised mapping of these primeval beech forests with the help of terrestrial surveys and remote sensing methods. To this end, the DIGITAL Institute is analysing a wide variety of remote sensing data for a holistic and comprehensive survey. Various ecosystem services such as carbon storage, biodiversity, ecotourism and others will then be quantified for all areas in order to record and visualise the immense value and diverse benefits of primeval beech forests.

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Sonian Forest Foundation

Weitere Partner:

E.C.O. Institute of Ecology

Kalkalpen National Park

INBO Research Institute Nature and Forest

Central Balkan National Park

Czech University of Life Sciences

City of Angermünde

Eberswalde University for Sustainable Development

Northwest German Forest Research Institute

Abruzzo, Lazio and Molise National Park

University of Tuscia

Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning

University of Ljubljana, Biotechnical Faculty

Carpathian Biosphere Reserve

Funding organisation

This project is funded by the European Union under the LIFE programme grant agreement number LIFE20 PRE/BE/000011 and co-financed by the Austrian Federal Ministry for Climate Action, Environment, Energy, Mobility, Innovation and Technology.




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