Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

On May 10, an international round of panellists joined online from Switzerland, Belgium and Canada to discuss about Gender Equality in Urban Forestry.

Access the full recording here.

Moderated by Jerylee Wilkes-Allemann (Bern University of Applied Sciences), the webinar focused on gender differences in the professional domain of forestry, arboriculture and other typical or less typical activities. Four panellists shared their insights with us:

The panellists discussed about the importance of empowerment for individuals and communities, role models, confidence building and workplace policies. After a vivid discussion and insightful comments from attendees around Europe sharing their personal experiences regarding gender equality in their daily working life, the panellists concluded that opening the discussion and enhancing visibility is crucial for further steps on the way to promoting gender equality.

Learn more about other exciting upcoming Urban Forestry events here:

https://efuforg.wordpress.com/european-forum-on-urban-forestry-2021-18-21-may-the-swiss-week/

Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

Under the trees, into the woods – International Summer School in Ghent, Belgium (August 19-27, 2021)

Deadline for Application: May 15, 2021

Worldwide, urbanised regions are looking for strategies to plant more trees and forests in order to enlarge the urban forest cover. In the light of climate change and the transition to resilient territories, there is a growing understanding of the importance of trees and forests for society.

Flanders (the northern part of Belgium) is one of the least forested areas in Europe and does not succeed in increasing the forest cover. It seems as if there is no space for more trees and forests in this urbanized region, characterized by an extensive urban sprawl and heterogeneous landscape where nearly every square metre of land is intensively occupied. Yet there is quite a lot of space where trees and forests can grow. However, this space often remains ‘invisible‘ because it is related to other types of land use or is ‘untouchable’ because of sectoral claims. There is, with other words, a need to find new spatial systems to intertwine more trees and forests within the built-up fabric.

The aim of the summer school is to explore possibilities and test concepts for tree and forest configurations in an urbanized territory. The focus will be on the interfaces between trees/forest and other types of land use. This means the interfaces where for example housing/working/food production/ mobility meet up and interact with trees and forest, where synergies can arise but ‘frictions‘ as well. Guiding principles are the spatial characteristics of trees and forests, process characteristics and the multitude of contributions that trees and forests provide to people (also refered to as ‘ecosystem services’). The focus will be on landscape-architectural and social-ecological aspects.

During the course of this summer school, a range of lectures of both international and local experts will ‘feed’ the design process. A reader, together with a Treescape Atlas of the study area and a Treescape Catalogue will be provided to the participants before the start of the summer school.

The summer school is linked to the ongoing Treescape research project, focusing on the exploration of new strategies and concepts to intertwine trees and forests in urbanized territories.

Photo by kazuend on Unsplash

Organization

Drs. Bjoke Carron, Prof. Hans Leinfelder, Prof. Jos Van Orshoven (KU Leuven)

With contributions and supervision of Martine De Maeseneer (KU Leuven/ MDMA), Prof. Marta Labastida (University of Minho). Other supervisors and lectures of (international) experts are to be confirmed.

When?

Arrival: before August 19th 2021 Summer school: August 19th-27th 2021

Departure: after August 27th 2021

Application and deadline

Eligible for participation are all (international) master students, recent graduates and young researchers in the fields of Landscape Architecture, Architecture, Urban Design or Urban Planning and Forestry.

Deadline for application: May 15th 2021

Confirmation of acceptance: May 31st 2021

Interested candidates should send their CV, a motivation letter (maximum 300 words in English), including maximum 3 images (150 dpi), to bjoke. carron@kuleuven.be.

Fee

Students enrolled in programmes at participating universities: no registration fee. The participation fee is 200 euros for students who are not connected to the KUL or the University of Minho, but that this amount could be (partly) dropped if the Summer School were to be (partly) online.

Given the current condition of the Covid-19 pandemic worldwide, all summer schools are currently organized with prejudice.

For more information, contact: bjoke.carron@kuleuven.be.

Check out the project’s Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/Treescape-research-project-104302114589769

Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

EFUF digital developments

Written by Clive Davies, Convenor of EFUF International Steering Group, EFI, Newcastle University, MD2 Consulting Ltd

Photo by Vitaly Vlasov on Pexels

In translations of Plato’s, The Republic, the philosopher says that

“a need or problem encourages creative efforts to meet the need or solve the problem”. 

This neatly describes the position that the EFUF international steering group found itself in 2020 when due to COVID-19 the 23rd annual EFUF meeting set for Manchester, UK, had to be cancelled. Perhaps with good foresight, the steering group also thought that the prospects for a ‘present in person’ EFUF in 2021 seemed risky too, which has turned out to be the case. There was concern that unless efforts were made to keep EFUF active during the pandemic, future Forum meetings would be in jeopardy. In the autumn of 2020, EFUF steering group member Bianca Baerlocher proposed the development of a digital platform for EFUF that would provide the opportunity for an on-line Forum to take place in 2021. An editorial steering group was set up to steer this development. The steering group was delighted that the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment, Fachhochschule Graubünden University of Applied Sciences and ArboCityNet took up the challenge of developing a digital platform based on an application called MyEFUF. This was launched in March 2021. MyEFUF is linked to EFUF’s other digital outlets, including the website and social media accounts. 

Photo: ArboCityNet

The myEFUF application is the portal to EFUF’s 2021 digital semester, which features a wide range of activities and events. In March, the opening event called ‘Urban Forestry Days’ with support from a range of organisations, including the European Forest Institute (EFI) and the Horizon 2020 CLEARING HOUSE project, attracted a large international audience not only in Europe but globally. The EFUF 2021 semester continues until the end of May, but the platform will continue throughout the year, for example, an event in June 2021 is already well developed. The platform also includes a marketplace for partner events (please use it) and an ability to share posters and other digital content. More information about the app and how to download it can be found here. In summary, there are a wide range of upcoming events, and if a mobile app is not your favourite platform, these can also be accessed at https://efuf.org/programme/

Having started the digital platform, there are other interesting and exciting developments planned, which will be shared through EFUF’s social media in due course. The good news is that whilst the digital platform provides an opportunity for EFUF’s network to stay in touch, we plan to have a present in person forum again in May 2022. Look out for announcements on myEFUF and www.efuf.org

Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

The White Rose Forest: Nature Recovery through a transdisciplinary and multicultural Community Approach

Written by Prof Dr Alan Simson, Chair of the WRF Governance Committee and the WRF Steering Committee

Broughton Sanctuary – a White Rose Forest Project. Credit: Broughton Hall Estate

The White Rose Forest (WRF) was initially launched in the City of Leeds on Yorkshire Day – 1st August – in 2000. Set up as a West Yorkshire Regeneration Initiative, it aims to encourage economic investment and human health and well-being through environmental improvement, in particular through the planting of trees. The WRF has now expanded to include North Yorkshire, and thus now covers an area of some 9424 km².

A Community Forest is a place with a Forestry Plan, and a partnership to deliver that plan. We therefore work in partnership with local authorities, landowners, businesses and communities to plant millions of trees in our urban centres and countryside that will help manage flood risk, combat climate change, create jobs and provide happier and healthier places for us all to live, love, work in and enjoy. The WRF engages with five specific planting zones, comprising the urban forest, the sub-urban forest, the peri-urban forest, the ex-urban forest (commute areas) and rural woodland.

Broughton Sanctuary Community Tree Planting, Credit: Broughton Hall Estate

Each zone requires a specific design approach, and the ex-urban areas are coming under increased pressure to expand as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the shift of employment and habitation away from town and city centres to ‘greener’ localities.

WRF activity is transdisciplinary and adopts a multi-cultural community approach. Get to know the three prime themes running at the moment:

  • Green Streets: Improving the design of urban streets by reducing traffic, increasing urban green especially street trees and providing better facilities for pedestrians and cyclists;
  • Landscapes for Water: Planting trees in the right places to help slow the flow of surface water into streams and rivers, thus helping to prevent urban flooding downstream;
  • Trees for Learning: Working with schools and community groups to promote the concept of urban forestry, enhancing the process of widening and deepening community involvement and connection to the planning, planting and management of their trees and woodland.

WRF planted approaching 2 million trees to date. Once these trees are established, they will also store significant quantities of carbon and help to deliver the Government’s commitment to achieving net zero carbon emissions in the UK by 2050.

Credit: WTML

The WRF is one of four Community Forests in the north of England working together to create the Northern Forest. The Northern Forest was set up by the UK Government in January 2018 as an environmental counterpart to their Northern Powerhouse Strategy, aiming to plant in excess of 50 million trees by 2032 to significantly increase the canopy cover of the region, and to improve the quality of life there for both people and wildlife. The Government has set up a Nature for Climate fund, which has earmarked £12.1 million (over €14 million) for tree planting this season, led by the Community Forests, and the White Rose Forest has benefitted from received £3.7 million (over €4.29 million) from this fund to plant 218 ha of new woodland this season, which has also enabled WRF to increase staff by three.

A Current White Rose Forest Project: Broughton Sanctuary, Broughton Hall Estate

Broughton Sanctuary at Broughton Hall, an estate some 30 km north-west of the City of Leeds, has become home to the largest tree planting scheme to take place in England this season. WRF has planted 160 ha of resilient woodland between December 2020 and April 2021 – the equivalent of 224 football pitches. Tree species have been selected to meet the objectives of biodiversity and to offer maximum resilience to climate change. The genetic provenance of the native species used were carefully considered prior to planting. The woodland area comprises 57% of high to medium forest; 28% of medium forest to scrub (no more than 20% of which are scrub species) and 15% of open ground. The tree planting marks the beginning of an ambitious nature recovery programme that will transform one third of this 1200 ha estate into a much wilder state, thus increasing biodiversity and wildlife. As well as tree planting, early interventions to kickstart the recovery process will include the natural regeneration of trees, scrub and grasslands, the creation and restoration of wetland habitats and sensitive woodland management.

The project has generated considerable media interest, having been featured in five national newspapers, and has appeared on Channel 4 News in the UK. WRF tried to get the title of the video changed – it isn’t the biggest tree planting operation ever undertaken in England – only the biggest undertaken this season. Guess that’s the media for you!

“We surely have to wake up to the fact that respecting and supporting nature has to be a high priority on the ground now. Our lack of a harmonious existence with the Earth is causing the extinction of species across the globe, as well as a deep lack of belonging for humanity […]. We believe that the change we need to see will come through the union of rewilding our ‘outer nature’, such as the nature recovery and rewilding project at Broughton, along with the rewilding of our ‘inner nature’, which perhaps has been the root cause of deforestation and degradation of nature in England. Our health and future as a species depend on the holistic health of our land […]. We are enormously grateful to everyone who has been involved in our nature recovery project so far. A huge thank you to the White Rose Forest, Defra, Kirklees Council and the Environment Agency.”

Roger Tempest, the custodian of the Broughton Hall Estate, and his partner Paris Ackrill, co-founder of Avalon Wellbeing

Community Tree-Planting at Broughton Sanctuary, Credit: Broughton Hall Estate

“We are committed to tree planting and natural regeneration on an unprecedented scale, and part of that will be a major focus on regenerating land alongside our watercourses. The benefits of doing so are vast, from helping biodiversity recover and absorbing carbon, to slowing the flow of surface water and reducing the risks of floods downstream. The rewilding of Broughton Sanctuary is a fantastic example of this, helping to plant trees where they are needed most and offering vital protection from flooding for communities all along the River Aire”.

Lord Goldsmith, UK Government Forestry Minister

Finally…The successful delivery of this project during a particularly challenging planting season has been achieved through close collaboration between Broughton Sanctuary, the White Rose Forest Delivery Team and the Forestry Commission. The new woodland forms part of WRF’s Landscape for Water Programme, that aims to reduce flood risk for urban areas close to major rivers and waterways in North and West Yorkshire, whilst also improving local water quality, biodiversity and recreational opportunities for local communities. The White Rose Forest is proud to support the Broughton Sanctuary in delivering this hugely important project that will help to protect our environment and the local communities along the River Aire, including Leeds. Broughton Sanctuary joins local authorities across Yorkshire in the leadership they have shown in responding to the climate emergency. Thanks to the support we have received from the Government and businesses, the White Rose Forest has never been in a better position to support this response by working with landowners, communities and fellow professionals across the region to plant trees and to deliver the essential long-term environmental and community benefits they can bring.

Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

Glimpsing through the trees – Round of introductions to projects on urban green space, trees, and human health and well-being

On the second day of the Urban Forestry Days (23 – 24 March 2021), policy planners, decision-makers, practitioners and researchers from all around the globe gathered online to explore the role of urban forests for health infrastructure. The two-day collaborative event of integrated Urban Forestry activities was hosted by the European Forest Institute (EFI), the European Forum on Urban Forestry (EFUF) and the Horizon 2020 CLEARING HOUSE project and welcomed 750 unique participants from over 68 different countries. The afternoon session on projects exploring linkages between urban green spaces, trees, and human health and well-being invited participants to glimpse through the trees and learn about projects fostering urban green space development.

Glimpsing through the trees, Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Starting off the session, Annebel Soer (EFI) presented Green4C (GreenForCare), a project looking at nature activities that promote physical and mental well-being, health and social inclusion. The three-year project, co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union, aims to contribute to the development of Green Care entrepreneurial opportunities and to facilitate capacity and skills for students, researchers, professionals and practitioners. New learning approaches and platforms step into place that help develop and enhance knowledge exchange in the field of Green Care.

Walking further down the green path, Tadhg MacIntyre (Maynooth University) took participants on a tour to learn about natural ways to foster urban mental health and well-being: GoGreenRoutes. The project pursues to grow nature-connectedness across Europe, Latin America, and China. Restoring our natural surroundings and ensuring accessibility to urban green spaces are essential steps to promote increased usage of green corridors, increased ways of active mobility, and contributing to society’s health and well-being. A multidisciplinary consortium of 40 organisations teams up to link participatory approaches and citizen science with digital innovation, co-creating so-called “Urban Well-being Labs” in six “Cultivating Cities”, developing a set of environmental quality indicators and exchanging lessons-learnt among different “Seed Cities” and a “Cross-Pollination Network”. Let’s start sowing!

People enjoying a park with multifunctional GBI, Photo by Hector Argüello Canals on Unsplash

How to ENABLE green and blue infrastructure (GBI) potential in complex social-ecological regions? A systematic approach for assessing local solutions was presented by Erik Andersson (Stockholm University Resilience Centre). For society to thrive in urban areas, cities need to provide social and environmental benefits. This can be achieved through well-designed GBI, which comes with significant potential to deliver multifunctional opportunities for social inclusion, health and human well-being, stormwater retention and habitat functions. Focusing on five case study sites, ENABLE examines how and under what conditions people favour those benefits the most. The project further looks into the distribution of GBI benefits among urban residents and their accessibility and how to ensure a GBI benefit-flow in the long run.

So how should a forest look like to make us feel well and to contribute to our health? And can this be aligned with site-specific biodiversity conservation and forest ecosystem management? A group of researchers united within the scope of the Dr. FOREST research project to answer these questions and quantify the impacts of forest diversity on human health and well-being. Michael Scherer-Lorenzen (Freiburg University) gave insights into the effects and underlying mechanisms with which tree diversity in temperate forests influence human health and well-being.

Time to dive into the forests of Belgium. Katriina Kilpi (Nature Minded) introduced the benefits of strategically designed forest bathing trails to enhance resilience, health and well-being and highlighted the need for nearby and accessible nature spaces. Furthermore, Katriina Kilpi presented the International Forest Therapy Days (IFTDays), which provide a meeting place for international forest therapy practitioners, scientists, and people eager to apply nature’s healing effects in their work. Throughout a range of events in nature, participants are invited to learn about different practices, share their knowledge and experience, and expand their tools regarding forest-based health practices.

Experiencing nature with all senses, Photo by Jordan Whitt on Unsplash

It is in our nature to network – Bettina Wilk (ICLEI) introduced NetworkNature, a resource for the nature-based solutions (NBS) community, which aims to spread the word about NBS and to create opportunities to maximise their impact on a local, regional and international scale. Funded by the European Commission under the Horizon 2020 programme and guided by strategical impact pathways, NetworkNature seeks to synthesise and strengthen the NBS evidence base and engage existing stakeholders and expand related communities. Further activities aim to ensure a mutual informing between NBS science and the policy agenda and accelerate the uptake of NBS across different sectors. Learn more here.

The session packed with manifold insights on how urban green spaces provide a window to connect with nature, recreate, interact with others and enhance the way we feel was brought to an end with a short discussion. Stay tuned for the Urban Forestry Days recordings to learn more. Do you want to tell others about an exciting project involving urban green spaces and nature-based solutions? Don’t miss the opportunity to engage with other urban forestry enthusiasts through the myEFUF app – here you can upload posters directly to the app or create a local event via the marketplace. Download the app from the App Store or Google Play.

 -The CLEARING HOUSE project has received funding from the European H2020 Research and Innovation programme under the Grant Agreement n° 821242.-

Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

Research, Practice and Perspectives on Integrated Forest Management and Urban Forestry – Contributions by young researchers and practitioners

In the scope of the Urban Forestry Days (23 – 24 March 2021), young researchers and practitioners from around the globe shared their work amongst an international audience. Clive Davies, Chair EFUF International Steering group, moderated the virtual session and highlighted the relevance of giving young scientists a voice. From street tree pits to Peruvian ecosystem landscapes and LiDAR data - browse through all contributions in one playlist here or dive into it one by one:

Looking ahead to spring and summer 2021 – imagine yourself on a sultry afternoon in the middle of the city centre. A narrow street flanked by buildings might not look like the first choice to take to cool down – or does it? With an extensive range of impermeable hard surfaces in the urban environment, incoming solar radiation is easily trapped and retained, causing the urban heat-island effect, which negatively impacts a city’s liveability as well as health and well-being of its citizens through heat stress. With a multifunctional network of urban green and blue infrastructure stepping into place, heat-reduction measures can be taken. For instance, trees help mitigating heat stress at the street level through shade provisioning and the process of evapotranspiration.

Amelie Claessens (IUCN Urban AllianceUniversity of Antwerp, Belgium) examines the cooling effect of trees in street canyons with the help of the EUREC-air laboratory of the University of Antwerp and local citizen scientists. To do so, she measures temperature from April 2020 until April 2021 on 37 points throughout three adjacent street canyons with a similar orientation but with different numbers of trees. As a result, a high-resolution map of intrastreet variations will be created. With this map’s help, it will be feasible to carry out comparisons on a spatial and temporal scale, examining heat stress severity to humans. Eager to learn more? Watch Amelie´s contribution here or read more about her research here.

The benefits urban green infrastructure (GI) provides can be harnessed best when involving all stakeholders that benefit directly and indirectly from those. Public awareness is crucial for GI development to be perceived, understood and appreciated widely. However, GI knowledge is mostly shared among professionals. But what about the knowledge of urban residents and their interest in green infrastructure development in residential landscapes? Annie Yuan (University of Toronto, Canada) importantly explored this topic focusing on living green infrastructure (GI) as an emerging concept referring to trees and other vegetated spaces that provide a range of ecosystem services and therefore benefits to citizens. Annie surveyed residents living in the City of Philadelphia, PA, to find out more about what residents already know about the concept of GI and what environmental concerns exist to identify barriers and opportunities to GI development and its management in the long run. Results indicate that most people are interested in recreational aspects and aesthetic values of GI. Explore Annie’s contribution live or scroll through it here to find out more about the future opportunities for GI development in residential landscapes.

Speaking of recreation, there are many different ways that well-being and mental health can be enhanced through activities in woodlands. Becky Duncan and the team of Open Aye C.I.C, Scotland, use creativity in woodlands to enhance mental health amongst diverse groups in their project ‘Wellbeing Of The Woods’. Through a participatory approach and arts therapy practice, this project, supported and funded by Scottish Forestry, engages people from different countries and backgrounds in nature. The setting: Woodlands in Scotland. The equipment: A camera and a backpack packed with all you need for a one-day excursion. Since 2017, over 300 visits to woodlands have been carried out – take yours now.

Given the increasing recognition of tree-based ecosystem services, different politically-driven planting targets have stepped into place in cities worldwide. However, many initiatives neglect crucial topics such as available planting space and growing requirements. Hard landscapes and impermeable soil surfaces do not make tree planting an easy task. High mortality rates of young trees is therefore a common phenomenon. What can be done from an engineer’s perspective to counteract this trend? How can we increase tree growth and long-term survival to help trees reach their species potential and optimise ecosystem services delivery? Dean Bell (Centre for Sustainable Planning and Environments, University of the West of England) invites us to learn about his research on the role of multidisciplinary integration in achieving resilient tree pits in hard landscapes, reporting key concepts of engineered solutions through a literature-informed typology. This research’s key message is that multidisciplinary integration is fundamental in achieving climate-ready, resilient and multifunctional tree pit infrastructure in hard landscapes – read more here.

To adequately monitor and ultimately enhance and protect the ecosystem services provided by urban trees, it is paramount to put these services into the equation. Let’s take a look at the example of Poland: How did the relaxed legislation on tree cutting in 2017 impact urban trees and their provision of ecosystem services? Contributions by two young reseachers from Poland importantly assessed this development. Karolina Zięba-Kulawik (University of Agriculture in Krakow, Poland) used a methodology for combining remotely sensed data with field measurements to assess selected tree parameters to estimate ecosystem services (ES) provided by urban trees. The study team determined values of ES provided by trees in 2017 in Racibórz (Poland) and estimated the loss of ES in a period of changing legislation that temporarily allowed removal of trees on private property without permission from city authorities. A main conclusion drawn is that tree inventories require application of a combination of multi-source data analyses. Learn more about Improving methods to calculate the loss of ecosystem services provided by urban trees using LiDAR and aerial orthophotos.

Trees growing on private property have become an essential part of urban green policies. In many places, restrictions are imposed on tree removal on private property. Monitoring compliance of these regulations often results difficult due to a lack of reference data and public administration capacity. Using a method based on LiDAR allows for monitoring green areas, including private properties, despite these limitations. Patrycja Przewoźna (Adam Mickiewicz University, Poland) applied this method for the impact assessment of the temporary suspension of mandatory permits on tree removal, which was in force in 2017 in Poland. Explore the results about the use of bi-temporal ALS point clouds for tree removal detection on private property, highlighting the importance of regular monitoring of UTC for effective urban tree management. Interested to learn more? Read the full paper.

A new approach to urban green area management was presented by Paolo Viskanic (R3GIS Ltd). The EU-funded LIFE Urbangreen project is trying to improve urban green area management through innovative tools, which help to assess and maximise ecosystem services and prepare cities to better adapt to the effects of climate change. To put this into practice, the main objective is to develop and demonstrate in real-life an innovative technological platform to improve management of green areas in 2 European and one Asian city.

Ramona-Elena Scriban (University Ștefan cel Mare of Suceava, Romania) importantly assessed urban cultural values identified in the forest certification process. Using Romania as a case study, Ramona examined the role of the voluntary forest certification process for the identification of urban cultural values additional to the mandatory forest management planning process and discussed a range of practical examples. Curious about the results? Find out more here.

Last but not least, Sally Torres Mallma (Universidad Ricardo Palma, Peru) took participants on a trip to the Peruvian Lomas Ecosystems Landscape. Her research focuses on integrating Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) in Lomas Ecosystems into urban policies for climate change adaptation. Taking into account Lima’s rapid and uncontrolled urbanisation as well as land traffic and inappropriate use, reflecting climate risk management and adaptation gets ever more important. Sally concluded that inside the landscape approach, Lomas Ecosystems within its environmental, social, and economical components should be considered.

Photos: Unsplash

Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

Welcome to the European Forum on Urban Forestry semester #EFUF2021!

From March to May 2021, the European Forum on Urban Forestry has planned a comprehensive programme with exciting speaker line-ups. In order to guide urban forestry enthusiasts through a wide range of online events, the free app myEFUF has been launched.

The European Forum on Urban Forestry (EFUF) is excited to announce the release of the myEFUF app! COVID-19 challenges did not stop us from creating an extraordinary EFUF experience for this year. myEFUF can now be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play and is all set to guide urban forestry enthusiasts through a range of exciting events. myEFUF has been developed by Arbocitynet and the University of Applied Sciences Graubünden with the support of the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN).

What is myEFUF all about?

The app will facilitate knowledge exchange and meetings in a virtual setting. In times of social distance, we want to make it easier for you to connect with each other and keep on networking with Urban Forestry colleagues from around Europe and beyond. We are especially excited to invite you to join local events through the app – from wherever you are based.
 
The app is available in 5 languages: English, German, French, Italian and Spanish. Take the chance to get together for a virtual networking lunch, set-up your own marketplace to discuss specific urban forestry topics or create a local walk around your favourite urban green space and invite others to join online. The events will be organised from March until May 2021. Eager to organise your own event? The marketplace invites you to contribute by creating an online event yourself or uploading a poster or flyer. 

Check out this short video below to get a taste of myEFUF!

myEFUF can now be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play

The Urban Forestry Semester (23 March – 21 May 2021)

Urban Forestry Days (23-24 March 2021)

Two days of integrated urban forestry activities brought together researchers, practitioners and policymakers from around Europe and beyond. 750 unique participants from over 68 different countries joined the conference online to explore the latest developments in urban forestry. Interactive discussions shed light on integrated forest management and experts gave valuable insights about the linkages between urban forests and sustainability transition. Read more about the conference in our blogposts on the linkages between urban forestry and sustainability transition, find out why urban forests are a valuable tool for building metropolitan green areas, learn about the virtual excursion to Kottenforst or watch our conference trailer to explore urban forests from Bonn to Beijing. Hungry for me? Presentations and recordings will soon be accessible via efuf.org.

The future in cities is green – and so are the next weeks!

myEFUF allows everyone interested to view upcoming events at a glance or to browse through the full EFUF2021 programme. We are looking forward to a series of interactive online events with a range of exciting speaker line-ups that will share their urban forestry stories with us – and the next ones are just ahead:

Urban Forestry Friday Morning Live Guest Room (26 March – 14 May 2021)

There are some special Friday mornings ahead of us. Grab your mug of coffee or tea and start off your Fridays with a series of Urban Forestry insights from different perspectives. We are looking forward to early bird get-togethers online with a list of wonderful speakers that are ready to share their Urban Forestry stories with us: Ursa Vilhar (Slovenian Forestry Institute), Renate Späth (Ministry for the Environment, Agriculture, Nature Conservation and Consumer Protection (MULNV) NRW), Matilda van den Bosch (IS Global), Chris Baines (environmental campaigner, horticulturist and landscape architect) and Patrick Huvenne (Agency for Nature and Forests, Flanders). Looking forward to seeing you there, check out the app for joining in online.

Photo: Manchester City of Trees

Urban Forestry for a Resilient Future webinars (4, 5, 6 May)

The organisers of the supposed EFUF 2020 conference – Manchester City of Trees – will bring us a series of 3 webinars on the 4th, 5th and 6th of May (15:00 – 17:00 CET). The 2-hour webinars are targeted at practitioners, researchers, policymakers and people eager to learn about the manifold opportunities urban forestry provides to make urban areas more resilient. As part of the European Forum on Urban Forestry Semester 2021, this webinar series will explore urban forests through three main themes.

  • Theme 1: ‘Keeping cities cool and reducing flood risk’ – How our urban forests help to provide resilience, and what we can do to make them more adaptable to climate change and urban expansion
  • Theme 2: ‘The air we breathe and the way we feel’ – The role of the urban forest in meeting our basic life needs and addressing the challenges of physical and mental health
  • Theme 3: ‘Trees and urban design’ – How trees and GI are integral to the development of our towns and cities in creating places where people want to live, work and play and how forest products can help to reduce our carbon footprint.

Registrations are now open – save your virtual spot via Eventbrite.

European Forum on Urban Forestry 2021 (18 – 21 May 2021)

Surviving the City – Urban Forests for nature-based health and happiness

To round off the Urban Forestry Semester 2021, a series of exciting events have been planned in Switzerland by ArboCityNet and the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment. Get an overview here or check out the events of ‘The Swiss Week’ directly on myEFUF. Depending on the restrictions, there will be hybrid or virtual-only events. 

EFUF2021 weeks – call for local contributions

In these uncertain times, we invite all EFUF sympathisers to organise local events to bring EFUF and urban forestry to your doorstep. Potential contributions include walks, webinars, talks, quizzes, workshops, art exhibitions, games, etc. The EFUF team will help you to bring your event live through the brandnew EFUF.app. The local events are ideally organised between 26 March and 18 May (the “EFUF2021 weeks”), but the EFUF.app stays live and running afterwards. Get in touch with Bianca Baerlorcher (info@arbocitynet.ch) to discuss possibilities.

This article was originally published on MedForest.net on March 30, 2021.

Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

Join us for a virtual excursion during the Urban Forestry Days

Cannot wait for the Urban Forestry Days (March 23-24, 2021) to be out in the forest? Our 1-minute conference trailer invites you on a journey through urban forests and green spaces from Beijing to Bonn.

The two-day collaborative event of integrated activities on Urban Forestry, hosted by the European Forest Institute (EFI), the European Forum on Urban Forestry (EFUF) and the Horizon 2020 CLEARING HOUSE project, brings together advanced practitioners, researchers, sector-leading policymakers, and everyone eager to learn about urban forestry’s latest developments in and beyond Europe. The online conference will be split into two main themes. While Day 1 addresses integrated forest management, Day 2 is themed on urban forests and health infrastructure. Further, there will be a specific focus on Sino-European collaboration. The conference will thus be run in English with Mandarin translations. Join us for lively and interactive talks and register here to secure a virtual seat.

Out in the woods at the Marteloscope Site

A particular highlight of the event will be the virtual excursion to Kottenforst, a 4.000 hectares peri-urban forest area in the southwest of Bonn in North Rhine-Westphalia. Join us from any place around the globe to explore the site that serves as a green escape for many of the residents around the Bonn region. Kottenforst, which forms part of the LIFE+ project Villewälder, welcomes its visitors with a tree composition mostly dominated by pedunculate oak, hornbeam and other broadleaved species such as European beech and small-leaved lime. During the virtual field trip, we will look at forests as critical infrastructure, the importance of Integrated Forest Management and recreation for forests and people. There will be the unique opportunity to ask your questions during a “live stream Q&A” with people that manage and research the forest. What drives people to come here, and what are the recreational and social functions of Kottenforst? And of increasing interest: In what way did the COVID-19 lockdown affect urban forestry and attitudes towards urban green spaces?

If you cannot make it to the virtual field trip on 24th March, we’ve got you covered – for all those not able to join, we will be preparing an interactive and digital alternative that will allow you to explore Kottenforst from your smartphone at any time.

Gathering video material for the virtual excursion

Register here to join and connect with experts from a broad network across different disciplines to discuss ongoing research and perspectives on sustainable cities, health and trees. We are looking forward to walking and working together towards greener cities! 

-The CLEARING HOUSE project has received funding from the European H2020 Research and Innovation programme under the Grant Agreement n° 821242.-

Photo credits: Maria Schloßmacher

Gender Equality in Urban Forestry – Reality or Utopia? (May 10)

Reimagining Future Cities – The Green Way (webinar 22 March)

Join in Europe – Monday, March 22, 2021 | 1:00 AM Brussels (CET)

This international conference, with a focal point on China and the US, will discuss the science, policies and practices enabling urban environments to meet local, national and global goals to create cleaner, greener, healthier and more beautiful cities. Innovators from a wide range of disciplines in the public and private sectors will present on this crucial topic.
The conference will be planned by Trella Urban Forestry Technology, a naturebased solutions company based in Shanghai and New York City, growing and providing tree-based solutions to Chinese cities,and Nature Based Solutions Institute, a global urban forestry consulting firm based in Malmo, Sweden. Please mark your calendars and join us to explore tomorrow’s green urban solutions, today.

Register through trellatrees.com/event.

You can read the conference brochure here.

Selected Speakers

  • Adrian Benepe: Brooklyn Botanic Garden President, 14th Commissioner of the New York City Department of Parks & RecreationProfessor Alan Simson: Professor Emeritus of Landscape Architecture and Urban Forestry at Leeds Beckett University
  • Alex Lin: Chairman, Les Enphants Co. Ltd., a Taiwan-based global retailer of children’s apparel and accessories
  • Dr. Baohua Yan: Secretary General of Mangrove Foundation
  • Dr. Cecil Konijnendijk: Founder, Nature Based Solutions Institute, Program Director of University of British Columbia’s Masters in Urban Forestry Leadership, Editor-in-Chief of the journal “Arboriculture & Urban Forestry”
  • Dr. Cheng Wang: Director of the Urban Forest Research Center of State Forestry Administration, China and the Chinese Academy of Forestry
  • Dr. Fan Dai: Director, California – China Climate Institute
  • Dr. Guangyu Wang: Associate Dean and Director of Asian Forest Research Centre at the University of British Columbia
  • Dr. Jessica Gordon: Climate Policy Fellow, California-China Climate Institute
  • Jonathan Krane: CEO of KraneShares and Trella, a China-focused investment manager
  • Ken Alex: Director of Project Climate at Berkeley Law and former Senior Policy Advisor to California Governor Jerry Brown
  • Michael McComb: Vice President, Communications and Sustainability, SAP Greater China
  • Raymond Fang: Director of Sustainability at Asia Pulp & Paper Co. Ltd
  • Dr. Stefano Boeri: Architect and urban planner, Founding Partner of Stefano Boeri Architetti, Professor at Politecnico di Milano, Chairman of Fondazione La Triennale di Milano, former Councillor for Culture in Milan
  • Terry Townshend: Member of the Beijing Urban Forestry Network, Beijing conservationist, founder of Birding Beijing, consultant on wildlife conservation and environmental law, and an advisor to the Paulson Institute and to the Beijing government on a project to protect and restore the capital’s biodiversity
  • Willy Gallia: Chief Sustainability Officer at the Schneider Group

Urban Forestry Days 23-24 March 2021 – registration open

EFUF, the European Forest Institute, the CLEARING HOUSE project and partners organise two Urban Forestry Days on the 23rd and the 24th of March 2021. Registration is now open at Eventbrite.

The Urban Forestry Days are a unique opportunity to connect with onging research and local implementation of urban forestry in China, Europe and worldwide. The pandemic has illustrated the importance of urban green areas for the population, so let us continue to work towards greener cities.

Prof Dr Rik De Vreese, CLEARING HOUSE project coordinator and member of the EFUF International Steering Group

This on-line event is targeted at advanced practitioners, established researchers, sector leading policymakers and those wishing to learn of the latest developments in Europe and beyond.  A special focus for this conference is Sino-Europe collaboration. The conference will be run in English with Mandarin translation.

Day one is themed on integrated urban forest management with a focus on the ‘sustainable transition of cities’ and ‘urban forestry and the pillars of sustainability’. Participants will also be able to attend a ‘virtual fieldtrip’ with ‘live stream Q&A’ from the Kottenforst, a peri-urban forest near Bonn in Germany.

Day two is themed on urban forests and health infrastructure. Keynote speakers will outline what medical science is telling us about forests as health infrastructure followed by a thematic workshop on ‘forests and urban greenspaces in pandemic times’.

The second day will also see the launch of EFUF 2021; a decentralised networking programme running from March to May 2021 with many diverse events. The new EFUF App will also be unveiled at the conference.

More info: https://efi.int/events/urban-forestry-days-23-24-march-2021-2021-03-23