On World Water Day held on 22 March 2016, the European Environment Agency (EEA) published its 2016 Report on European Forest Ecosystems. State and Trends that highlights the health of European forests and how they are under unprecedented pressures..
The Report identifies four main challenges that European forests are currently facing. According to the EEA, they are:
-Loss of habitat and degradation;
-Invasion of alien species and introduction of non-indigenous species;
-Pollution and excessive inputs of nutrients;
These threats, combined with economic activities such as logging, urban sprawl, or the increasing use of forests by humans for leisure, make forests more vulnerable to degradation.
To tackle these problems and to improve the protection of forests, the Report calls for enhanced research and data collection on a European level, tapping into national forest inventories and monitoring to better track changes in forest cover and conditions.
It also calls for EU policies to take forest activities more into account.