Nature knows no borders, boundaries exist only in our heads

SUSTREE, “Conservation and sustainable utilization of forest tree diversity in climate change“,  is a cooperation project with 8 partners from 6 Central European countries (Austria, Czechia, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia) within the Interreg CENTRAL EUROPE Programme. The project aims at the Conservation and sustainable utilization of forest tree diversity under climate change. Thus it actively promotes climate change adaptation of forests by fostering and enabling transnational adaptive management of forest seed and seedlings.

SUSTREE advocates for science-based transnational seed transfer in order to assist the migration of tree species and population and the conservation of the species’ intrinsic genetic diversity.

“Borderless forests”, a documentary movie produced under the aegis of the  SUSTREE Project, not only focuses on the issue of adapting European forest to climate change but also discusses the importance of selecting appropriate planting materials adapted to the growing conditions (expected) under climatic change. The film highlights the fact that climate change is a trans-border issue and hence the solutions to this problem should transcend national boundaries. The film showcases the opinion of experts, bringing forward the facts that the current regulation on trade and utilization of seed and planting materials in Europe are mostly designed at the national level and creates an obstacle to utilization of planting materials which (in many cases) may not be locally available. The movie demonstrates the different solutions available including assisted migration of tree seeds even talking about the pros and cons of the process. Moreover, it also provides a glimpse of the Smartphone application  (SUSselect) based decision-making tool being developed under the SUSTREE project for the selection of tree species and the best-adapted seed sources for different climate change scenarios.

The film was premiered on 28th March 2019, in Svetozor Cinema in Prague, Czechia, to an audience of around 300 students and forestry experts spreading the message of climate change impacts on forests and plausible solutions for  the way forward.

Reneema Hazarika
Communication Manager, SUSTREE
Austrian Research Centre for Forests (BFW)
Vienna, Austria

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