Forests: A Multi-sectoral and Multi-level Approach to Sustainable Forest Management

Part of the The European Union in International Affairs book series (EUIA)


The chapter evaluates and explains the effectiveness of the external action of the EU on forests. Despite its lack of competence on forests, the EU seeks to promote sustainable forest management through various policies and measures. Some are explicitly focused on forests, such as the EU’s participation in the United Nations Forum on Forests, while others rely on related fields to achieve sustainable forest management, such as the Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade Voluntary Partnership Agreements. The various external forest policies of the EU are characterised by varying levels of effectiveness. Despite the EU’s effort to create synergies and complementarities between them, different objectives are not always reconciled and EU external forest policies remain incoherent.


  1. Angelsen, Arild, Maria Brockhaus, William D. Sunderlin, and Louis V. Verchot, eds. 2012. Analysing REDD+. Challenges and Choices. Bogor: Center for International Forestry Research.Google Scholar
  2. Boyd, Emily, Esteve Corbera, and Manuel Estrada. 2008. UNFCCC Negotiations (Pre-Kyoto to COP-9): What the Process Says About the Politics of CDM-sinks. International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics 8 (2): 95–112.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Carden, Christopher, Robbert Wijers, and Paul Zambon. 2012. FLEGT, VPA, EUTR and Their Possible Impact on Bolivian Timber Sector. The Hague: CBI Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands.Google Scholar
  4. Council of the European Union. 1998. Council Resolution of 15 December 1998 on a Forestry Strategy for the EU (1999/C 56/01). Official Journal of the European Communities C56: 1–4.Google Scholar
  5. ———. 2005. Council Regulation (EC) No 2173/2005 of 20 December 2005 on the Establishment of a FLEGT Licensing Scheme for the Import of Timber in the European Community. Official Journal of the European Communities L347: 1–6.Google Scholar
  6. ———. 2010. Regulation (EU) No 995/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 October 2010 Laying Down the Obligations of Operators Who Place Timber and Timber Products on the Market (Text with EEA Relevance). Official Journal of the European Communities L295: 23–34.Google Scholar
  7. ———. 2014. New EU Forest Strategy: Conclusions Adopted by the Council. 9944/14, Brussels, May 19.Google Scholar
  8. Damro, Chad. 2012. Market Power Europe. Journal of European Public Policy 19 (5): 682–699.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Delreux, Tom. 2012. The Rotating Presidency and the EU’s External Representation in Environmental Affairs: the Case of Climate Change and Biodiversity Negotiations. Journal of Contemporary European Research 8 (2): 210–227.Google Scholar
  10. Delreux, Tom, and Pauline Pirlot. 2017. EU Performance in the United Nations Forum on Forests: An Analysis of the EU at UNFF11. In The EU in UN Politics. Actors, Processes and Performance, ed. Spyros Blavoukos and Dimitris Bourantonis, 187–207. Palgrave, Palgrave Studies in European Union Politics.Google Scholar
  11. Dooley, Kate, and Saskia Ozinga. 2011. Building on Forest Governance Reforms through FLEGT: The Best Way of Controlling Forests’ Contribution to Climate Change? Review of European Community & International Environmental Law 20 (2): 163–170.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Earth Negotiations Bulletin. 2010. Summary of the Tenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity: 18–29 October 2010. International Institute for Sustainable Development 9 (544).Google Scholar
  13. Eba’a Atiy, Richard, Samuel Assembe-Mvondo, Guillaume Lescuyer, and Paolo Cerutti. 2013. Impacts of International Timber Procurement Policies on Central Africa’s Forestry Sector: The Case of Cameroon. Forest Policy and Economics 32: 40–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Economic and Social Council. 2000. Resolution 2000/35 Report on the Fourth Session of the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests. Resolutions and Decision of the Economic and Social Council E/2000/99, 64–66.Google Scholar
  15. Edwards, Peter, and Daniela Kleinschmit. 2013. Towards a European Forest Policy—Conflicting Courses. Forest Policy and Economics 33: 87–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Eikermann, Anja. 2015. Forests in International Law. Is There Really a Need for an International Forest Convention? Cham, Switzerland: Springer.Google Scholar
  17. European Commission. 2003. Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament. Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Proposal for an EU Action Plan COM (2003) 251 Final. Brussels, May 21.Google Scholar
  18. ———. 2006. Communication from the Commission to the Council and the Parliament on an EU Forest Action Plan COM(2006)302. Brussels, June 15.Google Scholar
  19. ———. 2011a. Communication from the Commission to the Council and the Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Increasing the impact of EU Development Policy: An Agenda for Change [COM(2011) 637]. Brussels, October 13.Google Scholar
  20. ———. 2011b. Communication from the Commission to the Council and the Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions: Our Life Insurance, Our Natural Capital: An EU Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 [COM/2011/0244 Final]. Brussels, March 3.Google Scholar
  21. ———. 2014. The EU Biodiversity for Life Flagship Initiative. Luxemburg: European Commission.Google Scholar
  22. ———. 2016a. Evaluation of the Regulation (EU) No 995/2010 of the European Parliament and the Council of 20 October 2010 Laying Down the Obligations of Operators Who Place Timber and Timber Products on the Market (the EU Timber Regulation). COM(2016) 74. Brussels, February 18.Google Scholar
  23. ———. 2016b. Proposal for a Regulation of the Parliament and the Council: On the Inclusion of Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Removals from Land Use, Land use Change and Forestry into the 2030 Climate and Energy Framework and Amending Regulation No 525/2013 of the European Parliament and the Council on a Mechanism for Monitoring and Reporting Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Other Information Relevant to Climate Change. COM(2016) 0230. Brussels, July 20.Google Scholar
  24. ———. 2016c. Illegal Logging/FLEGT Action Plan. Accessed 7 Jan 2017.
  25. European Forest Institute. 2014. Linking FLEGT and REDD+. Accessed 18 Apr 2017.
  26. Fishman, Akiva, and Krystof Obidzinski. 2014. European Union Timber Regulation: Is It Legal? Review of European, Comparative & International Environmental Law 23 (2): 258–274.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. 2016. FAO FLEGT Programme. Accessed 29 Dec 2016.
  28. ———. 2017. FAO FLEGT Programme. Map of FLEGT Projects. Accessed 5 Jan 2017.
  29. Hughes, James, Gwendolyn Sasse, and Claire Gordon. 2005. The Logic of Enlargement Conditionality and Europeanization. In Europeanization and Regionalization in the EU’s Enlargement to Central and Eastern Europe. The Myth of Conditionality, 10–29. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. International Tropical Timber Organization. 2014. FLEGT Independent Market Monitoring (IMM). Accessed 7 Jul 2016.
  31. International Tropical Timber Organization, and Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. 2015. Programme for Implementing CITES Listings of Tropical Tree Species.Google Scholar
  32. ITTO-CITES [International Tropical Timber Organization, and Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora]. 2013. Program for Implementing CITES Listings of Tropical Species. Accessed 18 Apr 2017.
  33. Jonsson, Ragnar, Alexandru Giurca, Mauro Masiero, Ed Pepke, Davide Pettenella, Jeffrey Prestemon, and Goerg Winkel. 2015. Assessment of the EU Timber Regulation and FLEGT Action Plan. Joensuu: European Forest Institute.Google Scholar
  34. Lesniewska, Feja, and Constance McDermott. 2014. FLEGT VPAs: Laying a Pathway to Sustainability via Legality Lessons from Ghana and Indonesia. Forest Policy and Economics 48 (1): 16–23.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Levashova, Yulia. 2011. How Effective is the New EU Timber Regulation in the Fight Against Illegal Logging? Review of European Community & International Environmental Law 20 (3): 290–299.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. McDermott, C.L. 2014. REDDuced: From Sustainability to Legality to Units of Carbon—The Search for Common Interests in International Forest Governance. Environmental Science and Policy 35: 12–19.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Ochieng, Robert M., Ingrid Visseren-Hamakers, and Kwabena S. Nketiah. 2012. Interaction Between the FLEGT-VPA and REDD+ in Ghana: Recommendations for Interaction Management. Forest Policy and Economics 32: 32–39.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Overdevest, Christine, and Jonathan Zeitlin. 2013. Constructing a Transnational Timber Legality Assurance Regime: Architecture, Accomplishments, Challenges. Forest Policy and Economics 48: 6–15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Rametsteiner, Ewald, and Markku Simula. 2003. Forest Certification—An Instrument to Promote Sustainable Forest Management? Journal of Environmental Management 67: 87–98.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Rosendal, Kristin. 2006. The Convention on Biological Diversity: Tensions with the WTO TRIPS over access to Genetic Resources and the Sharing of Benefits. In Institutional Interaction in Global Environmental Governance. Synergies and Conflicts Among Interantional and EU Policies, ed. Sebastiaan Oberthür and Thomas Gehring, 79–102. Cambridge: The MIT Press.Google Scholar
  41. Savaresi, Annalisa. 2012. EU External Action on Forests: FLEGT and the Development of International Law. In The External Environmental Policy of the European Union: EU and International Law Perspectives, ed. Elisa Morgera, 149–173. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Schmitt, Christine B., Till Pistorius and Goerg Winkel. 2009. Global Conservation of Forest Biodiversity: Options for a Forest Protected Area Network under the CBD. Schriftenrei – he Naturschutz und Biologische Vielfalt, 84.Google Scholar
  43. Schmitz, Manuel. 2016. Strengthening the Rule of Law in Indonesia: The EU and the Combat Against Illegal Logging. Asia Europe Journal 14 (1): 79–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Springate-Baginski, Oliver, Aung Kyaw Thein, Anthony Neil, Win Myo Thu, and Faith Doherty. 2014. Democratising Timber: An Assessment of Myanmar’s Emerging ‘Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade’ (FLEGT) Process. Forest Policy and Economics 48: 33–45.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Trishkin, Maxim, Eugene Lopatin, and Timo Karjalainen. 2015. Exploratory Assessment of a Company’s Due Diligence System Against the EU Timber Regulation: A Case Study from Northwestern Russia. Forests 6 (4): 1380–1396.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Wodschow, Astrid, Iben Nathan, and Paolo Omar Cerutti. 2016. Participation, Public Policy-Making, and Legitimacy in the EU Voluntary Partnership Agreement Process: The Cameroon Case. Forest Policy and Economics 63: 1–10.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut de sciences politiques Louvain-Europe (ISPOLE)Université catholique de LouvainLouvain-la-NeuveBelgium
  2. 2.Earth and Life InstituteUniversité catholique de LouvainLouvain-la-NeuveBelgium

Personalised recommendations