Pro Silva Annual Meeting 2008

"Climate change - a new challenge"

19th to 21st June 2008 - Freudenstadt (Germany)

The international symposium of PRO SILVA EUROPA followed in Freudenstadt/Black Forest from 19th to 21st June 2008. The occasion was marked by two outstanding anniversaries: 175 years of the city forest and 100 years of close-to-nature forest management.

Place and Theme: “Close-to-Nature forestry guarantees economical success” with the subtitle “fulfillment of all forest functions even under progressive climate change through adaptation to natural forest processes" attracted 300 participants from 22 European countries to come together.

The president of Pro Silva. Prof. Dr. J. P.Schütz (Zürich) welcomed participants and guests (Landesminister Hauk, Landrat Dombrowsky and Lord Mayor Reichert) as well as the speakers and protagonists of the panel discussion.

Topics of the lectures were: “European and regional forecasts of future climate development - significance of vegetation as a sink and source of carbon” (Petra Lasch -  Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research) and “Consequences of climate change for European forestry: risk management and adaptation measures to increase tolerance and restore forests" (Jan-Luc Peyron, ECOFOR Paris). The speakers explained that climate change is now an indispensable part of the debate, but that it is taking place on a European scale and in different regions. On a large scale, significant changes in tree species structure cannot be excluded (Mediterranean region, Northern Europe). The climate researchers did not want to comment on how our forest trees react locally and regionally.

Panel Discussion

The international panel: Richard Stocker (CH), Dr. Jens Borchers (D), Dr. Vasyl Lavnyy (UKR), Jozef Turok (I.), Prof. Dr. Jurij Diaci (SLO) and P. Simola (FIN) discussed the role of natural forest management against the background of the climatic changes in the forestry environment.

With the exception of Dr. Jens Borchers, who presented his spruce pure stock management as the only escape strategy from extreme storm damages,  the other participants agreed that improving the mixture and structure was the better alternative and that it was also necessary to keep a close eye on further developments - including those in the remaining primeval forests of Europe, which are exposed to the same climate changes.


All participants enjoyed the basic excursion in the Jubilee City Forest and one of six optional excursions in southwest Germany, Alsace and Switzerland.  An impressive range of economically successful (despite some losses after hurricane Lothar 1999) and multifunctional businesses was on offer: small and medium-sized private forests, municipal forests and the municipal forests of Emmendingen and Rosenfeld: the latter - like the municipal forest of Freudenstadt - are recognised Pro Silva exemplary forests.

from “Der Dauerwald” Sonderheft Februar 2020 – Wobst, H. 2020: Die Geschichte der ANW 1950 - 2015

Integrated forest management for resilience and sustainability across 25 countries