Forests in the Baltic Sea Region are either dominating in the landscape (FIN, NOR, Russia, SWE) or are its important part (POL, Belarus, EST, LV) (annex 1). The long-term goal of the project is to foster good governance in forested landscapes. These landscapes are facing new challenges caused by i.e. globalization, climate change, demands of both more intensive use of natural resources and enhanced protection, international conventions and recreation development. These new challenges override local communities and institutions, cornering them into conflicts, temporary solutions and unsustainable practices. (ann. 2)
By using the Model Forest approach (ann. 3, 4) new solutions will be developed and demonstrated as functioning on the ground. New challenges can be met by creating innovative capacity, transnational, cross-sectoral cooperation and empowerment of the societies in the Baltic Sea Region in sustainable governance of forest landscape.
The project has two main objectives:
1. “To equip the Baltic Sea Region with a network of Baltic Landscapes (BL sites), combining innovative capacity, cooperative partnership and program of activities to deal with new challenges of sustainable development.”
The main role of BLs will be to function as long-term landscape laboratories and neutral platforms for cooperation in solving landscape problems. They are also expected to fulfill a gap between strategies and their implementation on the ground. BLs should combine knowledge from international and regional applied research, local experience, administrative and NGOs approaches. A network of partnerships will be built for innovations to be demonstrated on the ground.
The BL sites will be established in Belarus (1), FIN (2), POL (2) and SWE (3), (annex 5). The BL sites will be prepared for international cooperation to produce overall results and to disseminate experience locally, nationally and internationally.
2. “To define and analyze main landscape problems; to develop
innovative approaches and first proposals for policy, planning and management”.
Within this objective a new approach to balance values and interests in natural resources in forested landscapes will be developed and demonstrated in practice with special attention on the European Landscape Convention and the Water Framework Directive, economical and social interests. New approaches and components for landscape planning will be developed and proposed. (ann. 6, 7, 8)
Network of BL sites will produce:
• General analysis of roots of current problems and search for ways to address them,
• General agreed approaches towards management aiming to change the situation positively
• Proposals for influence of the local, regional and national policies, governance and practice
• Impact of EU and international conventions on local level.
• Support to the implementation of EUSBSR flagship 9.7
• Contribution to policy proposals to CBSS activities on integrated management of natural resources.