The JRC celebrates the International Day of Forests by launching the first ever European Atlas of Forest Tree Species. A result of the collaborative efforts of leading scientists and forestry professionals, this publication provides information on the different species that can be found in European forests and the factors that threaten them, such as the changes caused by climate change. It also aims to highlight the importance of trees and to increase awareness about the benefits which forest ecosystems provide.
Karmenu Vella, Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries declared: "I welcome this remarkable report on one of Europe's richest natural resources. By learning more about our trees and forests, we can truly appreciate their critical role in our environment, our economies and our lives. This comprehensive atlas will allow us to make better decisions about how to protect them and manage them sustainably"
Europe's forests are remarkable ecosystems and a precious natural resource. They represent some of the richest biological areas in Europe and are a source of well-being and wealth. They capture and store carbon, protect our soils, purify our water and clean the air we breathe.
As with any other form of life, forest trees adapt to the conditions in which they live, thereby creating a wide diversity of species across Europe. Each chapter of the Atlas describes different species with high quality graphics and photographs showing their climatic preferences and singularities.
This publication provides researchers and forest specialists with rigorous and up-to-date information. The publication is also suited for education and the dissemination of information to the general public about the richness of the European forests.