© WWF Bulgaria
Forests
Forests are a vital source of oxygen.
They provide homes for wildlife and livelihoods for about 1.6 billion people.
Fires, clear-cutting, illegal and unsustainable logging and deforestation are putting forests and other vital ecosystems like grasslands and peatlands at risk.

This devastation of nature is happening fast - and it is directly connected to the meat, dairy, palm oil, coffee and chocolate we eat in Europe. From the Amazon to the Asian rainforests, the EU is responsible for more than 10% of global forest destruction.

The EU has the power to help stop this destruction: It can do this by passing a new law that would stop products linked to the destruction of nature from ending up on the EU’s supermarket shelves. 

Through the #Together4Forests campaign, 1.2 million people demanded a strong, new EU law to protect the world’s forests and other ecosystems, and fed straight into the European Commission’s public consultation on deforestation. Together, they sent a powerful message: It’s time for the EU to stop being part of the problem, and become part of the solution.

On 13 September 2022, the voices of over 200,000 citizens that sent personalised messages to Members of the European Parliament over the summer have been heard. MEPs voted for significant improvements of the proposal of the European Commission for a regulation on deforestation-free products.

They agreed on including “other wooded land” in addition to forests, a higher number of checks on products, clearer definitions for important terms such as “forest degradation” and an enlarged product scope covering more than beef, soy, palm oil, rubber, timber, cacao and coffee. 

In the next few months, the European Parliament, the Commission and the Council will negotiate the final text of the EU Deforestation law, so that only nature destruction-free products are found in our shops and on our tables.

Stay up to date following the #Together4Forests campaign.

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"With every meal, we’re unwittingly wiping out vital ecosystems such as the Amazon or the Cerrado. These are also home to the main characters of our #Together4Forests mural landscape - macaws, jaguars, pumas - which is about to burst into flames. As consumers, we didn’t choose this destruction, and yet we are responsible. Only a strong EU deforestation law can change this."

Ester Asin, Director of WWF’s European Policy Office

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"We need to open our eyes to the impact that the European Union and its consumption have not only on forests but also on grasslands and savannahs - we cannot support the destruction of invaluable nature or peoples livelihoods for our dinner."

Anke Schulmeister-Oldenhove, Senior Forest Policy Officer

© Brent Stirton / Getty Images / WWF-UK
What WWF is doing
To further the EU’s policy agenda on illegal logging, deforestation and forest degradation, we work on two important policy areas:
 
Illegal and unsustainable logging: WWF works to ensure that all wood products on the EU market are legally sourced. To achieve this we are working to make sure that both the EU Timber Regulation (EUTR) and the EU Action Plan on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) are properly implemented and enforced.
 
Addressing the EU’s role in global deforestation and ecosystem destruction: WWF is advocating for strong EU action on deforestation and forest degradation but also on ecosystem conversion and degradation, including a new EU deforestation law. Other measures also include strengthening cooperation with other countries producing and consuming commodities to address the underlying drivers of nature destruction and human rights violations.

Contacts

Anke Schulmeister - Oldenhove
Senior Forest Policy Officer
+32 485 84 31 44
@ASchulmeisterO

Liesbeth Van den Bossche
EU Campaign Manager
+32 477 81 10 20
@L_VdBossche

Alejandra Morales
Senior Communications Officer, Deforestation 
+32 488 84 98 05
@Alex_delrey

Raquel Sancho Rovira
Campaign Officer 
@rsanchorov

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