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BFW goes international
The BFW has the objective to strengthen its international networking and to position itself as an active and reliable partner at both European and international levels. One strength which the BFW possesses in this regard is its good networking in the national and international research community. For example, the Institute for Forest Genetics has already conducted many projects with the Austrian Development Agency (ADA).

Projects focusing on climate change

At the Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, the Republic of Austria committed itself to providing 120 Million Euro to developing countries as a form of climate start-up financing. Thus, the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management supports projects for  Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) in developing countries. In this way, the BFW brings Austrian know-how into an international context.

Concepts for Burkina Faso

Over the past 35 years, signs of climate change have become apparent in Burkina Faso: lower precipitation and higher average temperatures. The aim of this project under the leadership of Head of Institute Professor Dr. Thomas Geburek is to develop land management concepts for the agroforestry sector. The government, and also regional and local communities, should be thereby supported in minimising the negative effects of a change in climate.  Firstly, a transfer of knowledge takes place and secondly the local land managers should be supplied with appropriate propagating material. The project encompasses seed experiments, drought-stress experiments and numerous education and training programmes. One focus is on the tree species Prosopsis africana, as this legume is well adapted to dry locations.

Participation of BFW in a climate project in Georgia

The 45,000 hectare area of Borjomi-Bakuriani in central Georgia is a unique mixture of alpine mountain forests and lowlands, and is rich in biodiversity. Due to forestry problems which occur there, such as livestock grazing, slash-and-burn clearances and the presence of bark-beetles (Ips typographus), which are linked to climate change, the BFW, in cooperation with the Austrian Federal Forests (ÖBf) and the Georgian Forest Directorate, is working on a concept for an adaptive sustainable forest management. The main objective of the concept is to promote the sustainable development and preservation of forest ecosystems, in order to improve the livelihoods of the local population, as these livelihoods have strong economic ties to the forest. Building on the present structure of the Georgian forest sector, the BFW (Scientific coordination: Dr. Robert Jandl) together with ÖBf-Consulting will provide forestry know-how on site.

Natural hazard management for transport infrastructure

The third international priority country of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, Environment and Water Management is Kirgizstan. Several forest management studies have taken place in this central Asian country over the past few years, whereby only limited attention was given to the aspect of re-establishment and sustainable management of protection forests for protection against natural hazards. The present BFW-project, under the direction of PhD. Antonia Zeidler, follows on from previous studies and analyses the protective function of the forest, the potential for afforestation and the necessity of forest maintenance. The objective of the project is to contribute to a sustainable, multifunctionally orientated and climate-neutral natural hazard management through the establishment and maintenance of protection forest areas along roadways in Kirgizstan.  Avalanche hazard maps or avalanche hazard warning maps, potential damage maps, protection forest maps (mapping the present protective effect) as well as protection-deficit maps are planned.  From these, potential afforestation maps for avalanche protection forests and recommendations for protection forest management will be derived.

BFW expertise in demand

This expertise makes BFW a highly sought-after cooperation partner internationally. This is what we are very proud of. However, the described projects represent only a small part of the many activities and responsibilities of BFW, ranging from expert opinion, research, monitoring and training to statutory enforcement in Austria. The number of new national projects of BFW - with partners from science and industry - provides further evidence that BFW with its staff successfully works on the accomplishment of its goals in the field of knowledge transfer.


Agroforestry in Burkina Faso

Landscape in Kyrgyzstan
Borjomi-Bakuriani in Georgia



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