Richard Melson

June 2006

Taiga Rescue Network

Taiga Rescue Network (TRN) is working to support local struggles and strengthen the cooperation between individuals, NGOs and indigenous peoples and nations concerned with the protection, restoration and sustainable use of the world's boreal forests by means that ensure the integrity of natural processes and dynamics.

About the Boreal/Taiga

The Taiga - or Boreal Forest - is a belt of coniferous dominated forest encircling the Northern hemisphere and making up one third of the world's total forest area, much of it still largely undisturbed. It represents the single largest terrestrial ecosystem on the planet, covering the far Northern regions of North America, Russia and Europe.
The forest of the North is home to hundreds of indigenous peoples with separate and distinct cultures. It contains rare plant and animal species and helps to control global warming.

Threats to the Taiga
Although it still contains huge areas of pristine habitat, and one of the lowest human populations in the world, the region is currently facing massive change and degradation.

Large-scale exploitation

Large-scale industrial forestry is by far the most important threat affecting boreal forests today. In Scandinavia large-scale exploitation of the forests has transformed virtually all forest land into intensively managed secondary forests. In Siberia and parts of Alaska and Canada most of the primary forest is still intact, but forestry is continuously moving into previously untouched areas. The taiga is being increasingly used as a mere "pulp factory" providing the raw material for the production of pulp and paper.

Unsustainable forest management
Intensive forestry methods such as large scale clear-cutting, plantation forestry, the introduction of exotic tree species, soil scarification and ditching and the use of pesticides/herbicides characterize forestry throughout the boreal region, leading to a simplification of the ecosystem and an unprecedented loss of habitat.

Wasteful consumption
The major force behind these developments is the wasteful and ever growing consumption of wood products - above all paper - in the industrialized world. Paper consumption has increased twenty fold during the 20th century and is expected to increase by another 80% by 2010 (from 1993 levels). Such a scenario would be a disaster for the taiga.

Other threats
Other pressures include oil and gas exploration, road building, mining, human induced forest fires, climate change as well as illegal activities such as poaching and logging.

TRN International Coordination Centre:

Box 116 Ajtte
SE-96223 Jokkmokk
tel + 46 971 17039
fax + 46 971 12057

Janet Alexandersson
International Coordinator

Leontien Krul
EU Forestry Policy Co-ordinator

Birthe Weijola
Information Coordinator

Sandra van Slooten
TRN Intern

Anna Zubko
English-Russian Web Content Review


Taiga Rescue Network 8th Biennial Conference

The Global Importance of the Boreal Forest:

Migratory Birds and the Paper Industry

10 - 13 September 2006

Clare College, Cambridge, UK

The conference will feature:

Attendees will include those from the following cross section of industries:

Additional meetings of Birdlife International's Forest Task Force, the Taiga Rescue Network and the Environmental Paper will be held following the conference by invitation.š Additional workshop information will be made available.

Contact: Jim Ford,

Save the date in your diary and be sure to check back at:

for more details as they become available.

An email reminder will be sent.

Co-hosts are the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, Birdlife International, Boreal Birdsong Initiative, ForestEthics, and UNEP – World Conservation Monitoring Centre with support from the Environmental Paper Network, Greenpeace, the World Wildlife Fund and others.,

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Taiga Rescue

Conference on Boreal Forests - Migratory Birds and Paper Industry

Attachment: Cambridgemeeting_programme.pdf (0.22 MB)

"Veronika Ferdinandova"

Thursday, June 15, 2006