Gassinski Model Forest is Five Years Old!

On March 17, 2000, the Gassinski Model Forest Association (GMFA) marked its five-year anniversary with a conference: The Gassinski Model Forest at Five Years: Results and Future Prospects. Seventy-two participants, including all GMFA partners, main project executors and the press, attended. Dr. Anatoly Pisarenko, Senior Forest Advisor, Russian Federal Forest Service, also participated. Although the IMFNS was not able to attend, a letter of congratulations from IMFNS Executive Director, Fred Johnson, was read   to the conference plenary.

At the conference it was noted that, although the GMFA's expertise can be used in the future, applying that expertise requires certain conditions so that the real issues can be meaningfully addressed. Among the conditions called for were official support from the municipal and regional levels and a clear expression   of this support in forest and other laws and policies at both the federal and regional levels. The model forest's policies should focus on creating the conditions for maintaining a balance of interests among the area's different groups who use the forest and its resources. Forest research must continuously provide information and data that will help decision-making, and protect the multiple values of the forest for future generations.  It was noted that the system of new forest management on the basis of partnership is well-established and developing strongly within the GMFA territory.

At the conclusion of the conference, many members of the organization were recognized for their contributions. A citation was also awarded to Peter Besseau, Senior Program Officer of the IMFNS and long-time collaborator in the development of the GMFA.

Submitted by: 
Dmitri Piven, GMFA