B.  Resilient forest systems (RIA)
Proposals shall aim at enhancing the adaptation of forest ecosystems (both primary and secondary) and forest production systems to the growing societal demands for forest products (i.e. wood and non-wood) and ecosystem services, considering trade-offs, climate change and vulnerability to natural disturbances (e.g. storms, droughts, pathogens, wild fires). Restoration of degraded ecosystems and natural expansion of forests, considering the long-term rural development, climate change mitigation objectives and biodiversity enhancement are also in the scope. Proposals shall encompass a varied range of forest and site types and tailored forest management systems representative of Europe's biogeographic regions. Proposals shall cover multiple parts of the production cycle and related operations, from regeneration/planting to harvesting, shall consider jointly supply (i.e. primary production) and demand (i.e. socio-economic) factors, and are expected to be interdisciplinary in nature.
Both sub-topics (A and B) are suitable for INCO and SMEs participation, and are expected to integrate technology with SSH and RRI aspects.
The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of the order of EUR 5 million for sub-topic B would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.
In the framework of SDG 9, 11, 13 and 15, , the EU's Forest Strategy 2013, the Circular Economy Package 2015, the Paris Agreement 2015, the EU's Bioeconomy Strategy 2018, and the EU Action Plan for Nature, People and the Economy, proposals are expected to assess how they will contribute to:
Increased long-term resilience of forest production systems and associated value chains to climate/environmental change and societal demand [sub-topic B];
Protection and restoration of biodiversity of primary and secondary forest[sub-topic B];
Enhanced contribution of the forest-based sector to long-term climate change mitigation, adaptation and rural development objectives [sub-topics A & B];
Also in the long-term, prompt a sizeable positive change to European landscapes and economies, by keeping the countryside green and serving to make cities greener, and increasing the share of both decent and green jobs [sub-topics A & B].
Illustration Photo: Forest (credits: Tim Gorman / Flickr Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-ND 2.0))