Ukrainian primeval forests to be protected as “nature monuments”
The officially adopted methodology is based on the criteria of the Carpathian Convention and on a document developed by the WWF-Ukraine. In the past two years, experts in forest management and nature conservation have elaborated the methodology. Apart from practical identification and conservation guidelines, the methodology includes criteria for classifying forest plots as virgin (primeval), quasi-virgin (old-growth), and natural.
“There is now an officially adopted mechanism based on relevant documents of the Carpathian Convention that allows for the creation of “virgin forest nature monuments”, which are absolutely no-logging zones. Special teams will begin the verification process of virgin forests very soon”, said Roman Volosyanchuk, WWF Forest Project Manager in Ukraine.
“The adopted methodology enables the conservation of old growth forests and the expansion of the protected areas network in Ukraine. We have to give this process a boost as the risks for such forests are high”, said Viktor Klid, Head of the Department of Ecological Networks and Protected Areas of the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine.
In recent years, WWF in Ukraine -- with the support of IKEA, DEG and the Succow Foundation -- have completed extensive work for the preliminary identification of virgin and old growth forests in the Ukrainian Carpathians (http://gis-wwf.com.ua/). By 1 January 2018, WWF and partners have identified approximately 93,000 hectares of old growth forests, including some 50,000 ha of virgin forests.