Energetic eco efforts in Europe

Energy efficiency, sustainable forest management and recycling may be buzzwords of our time but in Europe, where a dense population is putting ever-increasing pressure on natural resources, greater efforts in these areas are urgently needed.

Fuel wood collection by local population in the forest-steppe region of Soroca district in northern Moldova

Across Europe, the unsustainable use of wood for heating and cooking combined with low energy efficiency is harming the environment and the lives of communities who depend on it. Export of illegally harvested raw timber, unsustainable use of wood biomass and other natural resources, and limited recycling options exacerbate the problem.

In response, IUCN has teamed up with the Alcoa Foundation (part of the Alcoa Corporation, the world’s leading producer of primary aluminum and fabricated aluminum, as well as the world’s largest miner of bauxite and alumina refiner) to identify projects to submit to the Foundation’s grant scheme for action on forest conservation, energy efficiency and recycling.

The projects will take advantage of IUCN’s extensive network of NGO Members and business partners across the European Union and beyond.

Activities will aim at conserving biodiversity and restoring different forest landscapes and ecosystems. They will also help to improve rural livelihoods through the sustainable use and management of natural resources, particularly forests.

Projects will be selected for their ability to promote sustainable use and management of natural resources, to raise awareness of practical ways to recycle, improve the efficiency of recycling methods, and stimulate the local use of renewable energy.

The projects will be developed in 12 countries and run for three years. Results and achievements of NGO field projects will be shared across the global IUCN and Alcoa networks and with the public to showcase best practices and raise awareness.

For more information, contact Chantal van Ham, Project Officer chantalvanham@iucn.org

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