On October 21-24, 2008 more than 50 interested stakeholders from Komi, Russia and some foreign countries got together in Syktyvkar for the Forest Dialogue aiming at discussing «Forest and Rural Livelihoods».
On July 18, 2008 the representatives of local population, funds, science, forest business from Syktyvkar, Udora, Pechora, Izhma, Sosnogorsk and Troitsko-Pechorsk regions of Komi gathered in Silver Taiga Foundation office to discuss the draft of the Forest Plan of the KomiRepublic.
According to a new Forest Code of the Russian Federation the whole system of forestry and business planning has changed a lot. The main innovation of the Forest Code is the Forest Plan of the region – a document of medium-term strategic planning approved by the Head of the Republic for the period of 10 years. The Forest Plan should define the main directions of regional forests use and regeneration in accordance with their resource-economical, ecological and social value.
The main author of the Forest Plan of the Komi Republic is the branch of the Federal Unitary Enterprise «Roslesinforg» – Sevlesproekt (former Northern forest management enterprise of Vologda town). The economic part of the Forest Plan has been prepared by the Institute of socio-economic and energy problems of the North of Komi scientific center of the Russian Academy of Science, the general scheme of forest roads development has been elaborated by the Territorial Fund of Information of the Komi Republic.
According to the procedure of the Forest Plan elaboration and approval it should be broadly discussed and approved by all interested forest stakeholders. With this purpose the Forest Plan draft was presented on the web site (http://komles.rkomi.ru/index.phtml) of the State Forestry Service of Komi in the beginning of July 2008. It should be mentioned that this document is very big in size so it is not easy to get it from the Internet.
In fact the draft of the Forest Plan of the Komi Republic is the continuation of the soviet system of remote forest territories development with no roads, population and infrastructure. As for the developed central and southern regions they are not in the focus of the Plan. Most of the participants of the meeting think that central and southern regions have more perspectives for intensive forestry. The intensification of forest growing in these regions can constantly provide logging companies with wood and more people can get job for a long-term period.
According to Galina Knyazeva a chairman of Community Chamber of the Komi Republic the authors of the Forest Plan should pay attention first to the structure of the forest reserves while projecting and elaborating the scheme of forest development and not to the risky investment projects which are not likely to be realized.
Finally the participants of the meeting agreed to continue the discussion of the Forest Plan draft in the regions of Komi and to direct all the comments and remarks concerning its content to the State Forestry Service of the Komi Republic at email: Okomles@parma.ru or by fax: +7 8212 244327.
Besides the leaders of the Pechora River Rescue Committee Valentina Semyashkina and Tamara Makarova came to the conclusion that according to item 1st of the Forest Code of the Russian Federation and item 12th of the Federal Law № 174 ФЗ «About ecological expertise» the Forest Plan draft is entitled to the state ecological expertise. As a result of a discussion a corresponding letter has been sent to the Minister of Natural Resources and Preservation of the Environment of the Komi Republic Alexander Borovinskikh.
A seminar «Effectiveness of Public Hearings» was held on July 17, 2008 under the project «Forest Village» in the office of Silver Taiga Foundation. The seminar was attended by the representatives of funds, business and autonomous bodies from Udora, Priluzje, Izhma, Sosnogorsk and Troitsko-Pechorsk regions of Komi.
An informative seminar concerning an educational program «Village Ecology» was held on June 27, 2008 in the office of Silver Taiga Foundation. The program is included into the project «Forest Village» which is being implemented since April 1, 2008.
The seminar was attended by teachers of biology from the regions in which the «Forest Village» project is being implemented – Priluzje, Udora, Pechora, Ust-Kulom and Kaigorodok.
Аt the beginning project coordinator Yury Pautov presented Silver Taiga Foundation and the new project. Then Tatiana Kosolapova a teacher of biology, geography and ecology of Chernysh village school, Priluzje presented her authorial educational program «Village Ecology».
Tatiana elaborated the program under the Komi Model Forest Project which is being implemented in Priluzje region of Komi by Silver Taiga Foundation since 1997.
The program «Village Ecology» is for the students of the 6-7th form. It aims at formation if ecological culture of a person, development of ecological way of thinking, humane attitude towards the environment. The program has already been represented in different regional and republican seminars for teachers and in 2004 won in the all Russian competition «School – 2004» due to the national and regional component included into the program.
Thanks to «Village Ecology» students learn about the beginning of the village, its position in the landscape and about environment: forests, rivers and lakes, vegetation, animals, etc. It should be mentioned that according to the program students study not only in the class but also go to the excursions and visit specially prepared ecological routes.
Under the program students also take part in the village improvement. They plant trees and flowers, define pollution sources, keep valuable ecological, historical and cultural objects of the village – springs, monuments, landscape, etc.
Students’ parents also become interested and take part in the village improvement. It helps to unite people of the village and to create a positive emotional spirit.
According to the participants of the seminar it was a success due to the interested, active and open to innovations participants.
The next meeting will be held on August 22, 2008. By this time the teachers will examine the program, make notes and adapt the program to their region and school.
Tatiana Kosolapova invited the teachers to visit her lessons in September to learn the program in practice.
A training seminar under a new project «Forest Village» was held in the office of Silver Taiga Foundation on May 15, 2008.
On April 1st Silver Taiga Foundation began a new project in the Komi Republic called «Forest Village».
The full name of the project is «Village integration around economic improvement».