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Parliamentary questions
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26 April 2021
E-000598/2021(ASW)
Answer given by Mr Wojciechowski
on behalf of the European Commission
Question reference: E-000598/2021

In 2020, the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO(1)), FOREST EUROPE(2) and Eurostat(3) (4) provided quantitative information on forests and forestry, including Greece.

Significant evidence exists(5) that forest fires’ prevention and preparedness require forest management decisions and planning that address the factors of risk in order to minimise them, while securing other forest functions.

The Commission expert group on forest fires regularly reviews the possible ways to mitigate wildfire risks and provides a platform for exchanges of best practices. Greece is an active participant in the expert group.

The Joint Research Centre(6) provides publications on forest fires in Europe(7) that are helpful for developing the national strategies managing wildfires.

On 22 March 2021, the Commission published new guidelines to facilitate understanding of land-based wildfire prevention and effective responses, pointing to prevention measures including governance, planning and forest management, and how Member States can access EU funding for wildfire resilience .

The European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development provides support to investments related to sustainable residual biomass management for the purpose of bioenergy/bioeconomy applications, including investments in forestry technologies and in processing, in mobilising and in the marketing of forest products.

Concerning forest cadastral maps, the 4th generation of the cadastral survey in Greece will be completed by mid-2022, with co-financing by the European Regional Development Fund, under the operational Programme Competitiveness (EPANEK).

Remote-sensing technologies could also be used for a regular and detailed forest monitoring, and can benefit from EU financial support(8).

(1)http://www.fao.org/documents/card/en/c/ca9825en/
(2)https://foresteurope.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/SoEF_2020.pdf
(3)Agriculture, forestry and fishery statistics 2020: https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/web/products-statistical-books/-/KS-FK-20-001
(4)Forestry database: https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/web/forestry
(5)https://effis.jrc.ec.europa.eu/reports-and-publications/annual-fire-reports
(6)European Forest Fire Information System (EFFIS) run by the JRC.
(7)https://effis-gwis-cms.s3-eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/effis/reports-and-publications/annual-fire-reports/2019_Fire_Report_HighRes_final_PTcorrection/Annual_Report_2019_final_topdf_2.pdf
(8)https://ec.europa.eu/regional_policy/en/newsroom/coronavirus-response/react-eu
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