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30 years of Interreg: ForManRisk, forest regeneration and fire risk management

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This year Interreg celebrates its thirtieth birthday, focusing on three thematic of interest for the European cohesion: youth, a greener Europe and we all have neighbours. In this context, each month, we present one of our emblematic projects related to one of these thematic.

This month we present you ForManRisk, a project that provides solutions to address the problem of forest regeneration and risk management.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                @Photo Courtesy: @ForManRisk                               

  • What is the project about?

The project focuses on two topics of interest: risks and climate change. It aims at providing solutions to regenerate forests at a key moment. Forests suffer from severe water stress due to recurrent fires. FORMANRISK examines how forests can resist severe water damages that has a greater impact on young trees. Different methods for the generation of forests are studied allowing to see which species are more resistant and which responses should be brought according to the weather.

  • How is the project developed?

The project is based on the establishment of pilot forests and demonstration sites, distributed in three countries (France, Spain and Portugal, through 8 regions). These projects aim at optimising the value chain, by facilitating the sharing of local experiences to be promoted in the territories but also a transnational networking.

  • What are the expected results? Can they be exported to other regions of the European Union?

The project is developing online tools, including a virtual platform in order to gather results and good practice guides, ensuring forests' regeneration in constrained climate contexts.

  • Why is Formanrisk a project that should awaken the interest of everybody?

Due to global change, the forest and its regeneration could be affected in the long term and it is a key ecosystem for the economy of the SUDOE's territory. Indeed, forests cover more than 30% of the territory in France, Spain and Portugal, wood is a biobased material (product of photosynthesis) which exports few soil substances, stores carbon and contributes to the development of the territory. The wood industry is an “eco-material”, resulting from sustainable management of the territories that constitutes a real opportunity to boost this economic sector in the SUDOE's rural areas. Lastly, the massive use of forest stands is affected by a strong social demand which leads to strong social challenges in the SUDOE's area.

  • What is Interreg's contribution?

Interreg enables many things: transnational experimentation, development and transfer of specific silvicultural skills and techniques for forest regeneration with specific climatic contexts and forest fire challenges throughout the SUDOE's area. This cooperation is key to rethink our management guidelines for forest areas, both public and private, allowing us to develop transnational operational instruments. It is now necessary to establish shared management strategies to improve the resilience in general, but also the resilience of forest ecosystems to current and future climate changes. The project responds to these challenges by creating networks of a representative sample of high risk forest areas for the SUDOE's area. Territories and associated actors are fully aware of the territorial issue. Therefore, it is essential to share local knowledge, exchange experiences and compare scenarios, optimizing synergies at different scales (regional and transnational).

For more information about ForManRisk, visit our website