Dvinsky Forest Landscape
A pristine forest landscape that comprises natural forests which are unique for the whole Barents region and covers the area of 3,5 million hectares (ha). The major part of the area is covered by coniferous, mostly spruce-dominated forests. The forest is traditionally used for hunting, fishing, mushroom and berry picking which provides crucial subsistence resources for local communities in a sustainable way.
Due to gaps in legislation almost all of this territory has been leased for logging, and many hundreds of jobs and municipal incomes are dependent on logging. Its size has shrunk by almost 25% during the last decade and forecasts show current harvesting rates will lead to its total extinction in 20 years. Although a major part of it is under FSC forest management certification it does not appear to be a sufficient tool for its conservation and sustainable management because of stakeholder’ conflicts. If a protected area (PA) is not established or is not sufficiently large to protect the High Conservation Values (HCVs), this could have negative consequences above all for FSC-certified logging and processing companies and their domestic and international clients. It is crucially important that the borders of the PA and its resource management rules enable an optimal balance to be struck between conservation priorities and the possibilities for economic development.