Webinar – Spotlight on genetic diversity: An unseen ally in adapting forests to drought

15 April 2024 (10:00 - 12:00 CET). Online.


Drought events are expected to be more frequent and more extreme in the forthcoming decades due to climate change. Indeed, those observed in Europe in the past decade are the most severe on record. Drought-induced diebacks of forest trees have led to a loss of forest area in Europe estimated at 500,000 ha between 1987 and 2016. Many forest tree species are affected, even rather drought-resistant sessile oaks, and especially when they grow under limiting environmental conditions.

Wise use of forest genetic diversity has unseen power to transform forest management decision making. Choosing locally recommended provenance for native species can improve forest stand vitality, while assisted migration could facilitate local forest adaptation. This requires detailed information about the inheritable (genetic) and non-inheritable (“plastic”) bases of adaptive variation within and between species.

In this webinar, organised by FOREST EUROPE in collaboration with EUFORGEN and the EU-funded project FORGENIUS, we focus on both the potential and limits of genetic adaptation of forest tree stands to drought. The session is entitled ‘Spotlight on Genetic Diversity: An Unseen Ally in Adapting Forests to Drought‘ and we will present the latest science and show how it can support management strategies and policies at regional, national and international level to foster adaptation to drought in European forests, based on feedback from ongoing practices.

During the webinar, attendees will learn what happens to a tree under drought and how drought is affecting European forests. How does drought stress vary among species, among populations, among individual trees and how do we understand the genetic bases of such variation? Why does it matter, and how can this knowledge be applied in practice? Find all the answers on 15 April with us and a great panel of guest speakers and experts.

Download the official invitation (PDF)

Follow the webinar via YouTube Live!

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European Forest Genetic Resources Programme is an international cooperation programme that promotes the conservation and sustainable use of forest genetic resources in Europe as an integral part of sustainable forest management.