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Aarhus University represented in new initiative to help nature and the climate

The Danish Climate Forest Foundation (Klimaskovfond) aims to reduce CO2 and provide more nature. This is the brief for the Climate Forest Foundation, which is just starting its work. Professor Jørgen E. Olesen has been appointed by the Minister for the Environment to participate in the advisory committee, which will ensure the greatest possible impact.

More forest must be planted in Denmark, and there must be active efforts to make it possible for individuals and companies to make a climate contribution that ensures a measurable CO2 reduction and that takes climate-burdening low-lying land out of Danish agriculture.

With this backdrop, in December 2020 the Danish Parliament adopted Denmark's first Climate Forest Foundation with a start-up capital of DKK 100 million from the state. The Climate Forest Foundation was set up as an independent management unit with its own board and its own statutory framework, and its main purpose is to implement climate projects in Denmark focusing on, for example, synergy effects between biodiversity, the aquatic environment, outdoor recreation, and nitrogen impacts.

The ambition is for individuals, companies and foundations to be able to buy CO2 units through the Foundation, which will then plant new forests and take climate-burdening low-lying soils out of agriculture. It will be possible to see

where in Denmark the projects are located, and the Foundation will keep a record of the net reductions in greenhouse gas emissions associated with its projects. The impact will subsequently be verified by an independent third party.

The organisation of the Climate Forest Foundation is such that a board lays down its procedures and prioritisation criteria. The board is appointed by the Minister of the Environment, who also appoints an advisory committee composed of representatives from knowledge institutions, civil society organisations, non-profit foundations, national associations, interest and business organisations, as well as research environments and universities.

Broad-based synergy

The role of the committee is to satisfy the many needs and opinions in the different layers of society regarding the landscape and forestry of the future, and not least to anchor initiatives professionally with the best possible synergy between the many different parties involved in the work. Professor Jørgen E. Olesen has been asked to take a position in this advisory committee by Minister for the Environment Lea Wermelin (Social Democrats).

"This initiative is bringing together a broad panel of relevant stakeholders for the first time. I’m very pleased to see this, and there are many exciting aspects in the foundation's work, including not least a new way of financing the green transition. I’m very honoured that the minister has asked me to be a part of this important work under the auspices of the Danish Climate Forest Foundation," says Jørgen E. Olesen.

The board of the Foundation was recently appointed by the Minister for the Environment. AU is also represented here, as Professor Signe Normand from the Department of Biology was appointed by the Minister to participate in board work in spring 2021.

Read more about the Danish Climate Forest Foundation on the Ministry of the Environment website.



Professor Jørgen E. Olesen,
Department of Agroecology,
Aarhus University,
Tel. no.: +45 40821659
Email: jeo@agro.au.dk