Folder Forest Biodiversity


Forests are biologically diverse systems, representing some of the richest biological areas on Earth. They offer a variety of habitats for plants, animals and micro-organisms, and hold the majority of the world’s terrestrial species.

In the past, timber production was regarded as the dominant function of forests. However in recent years this perception has shifted to a more multi-functional and balanced view. Other forest functions and services, such as recreation, health and well-being, biological diversity, maintenance of ecosystem services and the mitigation of climate change, are now recognized as part of the importance of forests and have become integral components of sustainable forest management. Forest biological diversity is increasingly recognized as both a complex and unique element.

However, forest biodiversity is increasingly threatened as a result of deforestation, fragmentation, climate change and other stressors. 

The Convention on Biological Diversity addresses forests directly through the expanded programme of work on forest biological diversity, adopted in 2002 by the Conference of the Parties at its sixth meeting. The forest work programme constitutes a broad set of goals, objectives and activities aimed at the conservation of forest biodiversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable use of the benefits arising from the utilization of forest genetic resources. The programme of work on forest biodiversity consists of three elements:

  • conservation, sustainable use, and benefit-sharing;
  • institutional and socio-economic enabling environment;
  • knowledge, assessment, and monitoring.


For more information and the COP decisions on this subject:

Text source: Convention on Biological Diversity

PDF themadossier-bosbiodiversiteit.pdf Download Item only translated in Dutch
PDF dossier-biodiversite-forestiere.pdf Download Item only translated in French

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