Sustainable Forest Management Alternatives for the Carpathian Mountains with a Focus on Ukraine

  • William S. KeetonEmail author
  • Per K. Angelstam
  • Yurij Bihun
  • Mykola Chernyavskyy
  • Sarah M. Crow
  • Anatoliy Deyneka
  • Marine Elbakidze
  • Joshua Farley
  • Volodymyr Kovalyshyn
  • Ivan Kruhlov
  • Bohdan Mahura
  • Stepan Myklush
  • Jared S. Nunery
  • Ihor Soloviy
  • Lyudmyla Zahvoyska
Part of the Environmental Science and Engineering book series (ESE)


Sustainable forest management (SFM) has been challenging in the Carpathian Mountain region of Europe. We explore emerging models and innovative practices that offer guidance on implementing SFM, based on recommendations developed through a scientific atelier held in western Ukraine. Information was gathered through technical presentations, site visits, unstructured interviews with stakeholders, and literature review. The contribution of SFM to biodiversity conservation depends on the establishment of fully representative and sufficiently extensive reserve systems. On managed forestlands, providing a better balance of stand ages and recently developed silvicultural practices, such as “close to-nature” and disturbance-based forestry, will help maintain ecosystem functions while providing a range of economic uses. Restoration of native species composition in areas dominated by spruce plantations will both enhance forest health and promote biodiversity conservation. Broader use of contemporary watershed management approaches is recommended, including delineation of riparian buffers, riparian forest restoration, ecologically informed design of transportation infrastructure, and investment in modernized harvesting machinery. Expanding forest sector participation in forest certification and carbon markets offer new opportunities and challenges. Certification of forestlands is expanding but has been limited by non-conformities. Ukrainian afforestation goals have the potential to sequester large quantities of carbon and generate substantial economic benefits as international carbon markets develop. The relatively long rotations currently required under Ukrainian forest code offer significant carbon storage benefits, as would conservation of high biomass, old-growth Carpathian beech and spruce–fir forests. A variety of stresses are predicted to increase with climate change, requiring adaptive responses. The challenge facing Ukraine and other Carpathian nations is to merge these ideas into a holistic, landscape approach adapted to the context of transitional, post-socialist economies.


Sustainable Forest Management Carbon Market Forest Sector Forest Certification Abandoned Agricultural Land 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This paper resulted from scientific exchanges funded by the Trust for Mutual Understanding, the United States Fulbright Program, the Pennsylvania State University WIRA Program and the Marcus and Amalia Wallenberg Foundation. Two anonymous reviewers provided helpful comments. Special thanks to the Ukrainian National Forestry University, Znesinnya Regional Landscape Park, Skole State Forest Enterprise, Scolivsky Beskydy National Park, Khust State Forest Enterprise, Gorgany Nature Preserve, Khust Forestry College, the Swiss-Ukrainian Forest Development Project in Transcarpathia (FORZA), Ecosphere, and the Carpathian Biosphere Reserve for hosting events critical to the development of this publication.


  1. Aber J, Neilson RP, McNulty S, Lenihan JM, Bachelet D, Drapek RJ (2001) Forest processes and global environmental change: predicting the effects of individual and multiple stressors. BioSci 51:735–751CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Anfodillo T, Carrer M, Dalla Valle E, Giacoma E, Lamedica S, Pettenella D (2008) Programme Carpathian project: current state of forest resources in the Carpathians. Universita Delgi Studi Di Padova, PadovaGoogle Scholar
  3. Angelstam P (2006) Maintaining cultural and natural biodiversity in Europe’s economic centre and periphery. In: Agnoletti M (ed) The conservation of cultural landscapes. CAB International, WallingfordGoogle Scholar
  4. Angelstam P, Kuuluvainen T (2004) Boreal forest disturbance regimes, successional dynamics and landscape structures—a European perspective. Ecol Bull 51:117–136Google Scholar
  5. Badea O, Tanase M, Georgeta J, Anisoara L, Peiov A, Uhlirova H, Pajtik J, Wawrzoniak J, Shparyk Y (2004) Forest health status in the Carpathian Mountains over the period 1997–2001. Environ Pollut 130:93–98CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bartholy J, Pongracz R (2007) Regional analysis of extreme temperature and precipitation indices for the Carpathian Basin from 1946 to 2001. Glob Planet Chang 57:83–95CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bartholy J, Pongracz R, Gelybo G (2007) Regional climate change expected in Hungary for 2071–2100. Appl Ecol Environ Res 5:1–17Google Scholar
  8. Bauhus J, Puettmann K, Messier C (2009) Silviculture for old-growth attributes. For Ecol Manag 258:525–537CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Björnsen-Gurung A, Bokwa A, Chełmicki W, Elbakidze M, Hirschmugl M, Hostert P, Ibisch P, Kozak J, Kuemmerle T, Matei E, Ostapowicz K, Pociask-Karteczka J, Schmidt L, van der Linden S, Zebisch M (2009) Global change research in the Carpathian Mountain region. Mt Res Dev 29:282–288CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Björse G, Bradshaw R (1998) 2000 years of forest dynamics in southern Sweden: suggestions for forest management. For Ecol Manag 104:15–26CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Budyakova T, Skrylnikov D, Pavelko A, Dovhanych Y (2005) National assessment of the national policy, legislative and institutional frameworks related to the Carpathian Convention: Ukraine. Regional Environment Center, EURAC, and Italian Ministry for the Environment, Land and Sea, BolzanoGoogle Scholar
  12. Chernyavskyy MV (2005) The dynamics of virgin beech forests in the Ukrainian Carpathians. In: Commarmot B, Hamor FD (eds) Natural forests in the temperate zone of Europe: values and utilization. Proceedings of a conference, 13–17 Oct 2003, Mukachevo, Ukraine. Swiss Federal Research Institute, BirmensdorfGoogle Scholar
  13. Chernyavskyy MV (2009) Forest stand dynamics and close to nature forestry. In: Soloviy I, Keeton WS (eds) Ecological economics and sustainable forest management: developing a trans-disciplinary approach for the Carpathian Mountains. Ukrainian National Forestry University Press, LvivGoogle Scholar
  14. Dezso Z, Bartholy J, Pongracz R, Barcza Z (2005) Analysis of land-use/land-cover change in the Carpathian region based on remote sensing techniques. Phys Chem Earth 30:109–115CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Elbakidze M, Angelstam P (2007) Implementing sustainable forest management in Ukraine’s Carpathian Mountains: the role of traditional village systems. For Ecol Manag 249:28–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Elbakidze M, Angelstam P (2009) Cross-border cooperation along the eastern border of European Union: a review and approach to learning for sustainable landscapes. Cent Eur J Spat Landsc Plan 20(1):33–42Google Scholar
  17. Fall JJ (1999) Transboundary biosphere reserves: a new framework for cooperation. Environ Conserv 26:252–255CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Farley J (2008) The role of prices in conserving critical natural capital. Conserv Biol 22:1399–1408CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Farley J (2009) Conservation through the economics lens. Environ Manag 45:26–38CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Farley J, Zahvoyska L, Maksymiv L (2009) Transdisciplinary paths towards sustainability: new approaches for integrating research, education and policy. In: Soloviy I, Keeton WS (eds) Ecological economics and sustainable forest management: developing a trans-disciplinary approach for the Carpathian Mountains. Ukrainian National Forestry University Press, LvivGoogle Scholar
  21. Flick U (2009) An introduction to qualitative research. Sage Publications, LondonGoogle Scholar
  22. Foellmi H, Schwitter R (2009) Forest resource planning for people with people: two-level planning for sustainable management. In: Soloviy I, Keeton WS (eds) Ecological economics and sustainable forest management developing a trans-disciplinary approach for the carpathian mountains. Ukrainian National Forestry University Press, LvivGoogle Scholar
  23. Franklin JF, Berg DR, Thornburgh DA, Tappeiner JC (1997) Alternative silvicultural approaches to timber harvesting: variable retention harvest system. In: Kohm KA, Franklin JF (eds) Creating a forestry for the twenty-first century: the science of ecosystem management. Island Press, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  24. Franklin JF, Spies TA, Van Pelt R, Carey A, Thornburgh D, Berg DR, Lindenmayer D, Harmon M, Keeton WS, Shaw DC, Bible K, Chen J (2002) Disturbances and the structural development of natural forest ecosystems with some implications for silviculture. For Ecol Manag 155:399–423CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Gregory SV (1997) Riparian management in the twenty-first century. In: Kohm KA, Franklin JF (eds) Creating a forestry for the twenty-first century: the science of ecosystem management. Island Press, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  26. Grodzki W, McManus M, Knížek M, Meshkova V, Mihalciuc V, Novotny J, Turčani M, Slobodyan Y (2004) Occurrence of spruce bark beetles in forest stands at different levels of air pollution stress. Environ Pollut 130:73–83CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Hanson J, Lorimer C (2007) Forest structure and light regimes following moderate wind storms: implications for multi-cohort management. Ecol Appl 17:1325–1340CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Hunter ML, Jacobson GL, Webb T (1988) Paleoecology and the coarse-filter approach to maintaining biological diversity. Conserv Biol 2:375–385CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Keeton WS (2006) Managing for late-successional/old-growth forest characteristics in northern hardwood-conifer forests. For Ecol Manag 235:129–142CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Keeton WS (2007) Role of managed forestlands and models for sustainable forest management: perspectives from North America. George Wright Forum 24(3):38–53Google Scholar
  31. Keeton WS, Kraft CE, Warren DR (2007) Mature and old-growth riparian forests: structure, dynamics, and effects on Adirondack stream habitats. Ecol Appl 17:852–868CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Keeton WS, Chernyavskyy M, Gratzer G, Main-Korn M, Shpylchak M, Bihun Y (2010a) Structural characteristics and aboveground biomass of old-growth spruce-fir stands in the eastern Carpathian Mountains, Ukraine. Plant Biosyst 144:1–12Google Scholar
  33. Keeton WS, Burrascano S, Pucko C, Blasi C, Bihun Y, Chen J, Chernyavskyy M, Commarmot B, Franklin JF, Gratzer G, Nunery JS, Shparyk Y, Spies TA, Swanson ME (2010b) A global analysis of temperate old-growth forests: commonality in carbon storage and co-varying ecosystem functions. Int For Rev 12(5):3Google Scholar
  34. Kovalyshyn V, Pecher I (2009) Understanding the hurdles to sustainable forest management through FSC forest certification in the Transcarpathian region of Ukraine. In: Soloviy I, Keeton WS (eds) Ecological economics and sustainable forest management: developing a trans-disciplinary approach for the Carpathian Mountains. Ukrainian National Forestry University Press, LvivGoogle Scholar
  35. Kuemmerle T, Radeloff VC, Perzanowski K, Hostert P (2006) Cross-border comparison of land cover and landscape pattern in Eastern Europe using a hybrid classification technique. Remote Sens Environ 103:449–464CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Kuemmerle T, Hostert P, Radeloff VC, Perzanowski K, Kruhlov I (2007) Post-socialist forest disturbance in the Carpathian border region of Poland, Slovakia, and Ukraine. Ecol Appl 17:1279–1295CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Kuemmerle T, Hostert P, Radeloff VC, van der Linden S, Perzanowski K, Kruhlov I (2008) Cross-border comparison of post-socialist farmland abandonment in the Carpathians. Ecosyst 11:614–628CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Kuemmerle T, Chaskovskyy O, Knorn J, Radeloff VC, Kruhlov I, Keeton WS, Hostert P (2009) Forest cover change and illegal logging in the Ukrainian Carpathians in the transition period from 1988 to 2007. Remote Sens Environ 113:1194–1207CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Lavnyy V, Lässig R (2003) Extent of storms in the Ukrainian Carpathians. In: Proceedings of the international conference on wind effects on trees, Karlsruhe, 16–18 Sept 2003Google Scholar
  40. Lazdinis M, Angelstam P (2005) Functionality of riparian forest ecotones in the context of former Soviet Union and Swedish forest management histories. For Policy Econ 7:321–332CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Lee PC, Smyth C, Boutin S (2004) Quantitative review of riparian buffer width guidelines from Canada and the United States. J Environ Manag 70:165–180CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Levinsky I, Skov F, Svenning JC, Rahbek C (2007) Potential impacts of climate change on the distributions and diversity patterns of European mammals. Biodivers Conserv 16:3803–3816CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Lindenmayer DB, Franklin JF (2002) Conserving forest biodiversity: a comprehensive multiscaled approach. Island Press, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  44. Mahura B, Bihun Y, Deyneka A (2009) Opportunities and challenges in promoting sustainable timber harvesting in the Ukrainian Carpathians. In: Soloviy I, Keeton WS (eds) Ecological economics and sustainable forest management: developing a trans-disciplinary approach for the Carpathian Mountains. Ukrainian National Forestry University Press, LvivGoogle Scholar
  45. Nagel TA, Svoboda M, Diaci J (2006) Regeneration patterns after intermediate wind disturbance in an old-growth Fagus-Abies forest in southeastern Slovenia. For Ecol Manag 226:268–278CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Naiman RJ, Bisson PA, Lee RG (1997) Approaches to management at the watershed scale. In: Kohm KA, Franklin JF (eds) Creating a forestry for the twenty-first century: the science of ecosystem management. Island Press, WashingtonGoogle Scholar
  47. Naiman RJ, Decamps H, McClain ME (2005) Riparia: ecology, conservation, and management of streamside communities. Elsevier, San DiegoGoogle Scholar
  48. Nijnik M (2001) Mitigating climate change via afforestation in Ukraine. In: Essman HS, Pettenella D (eds) Forestry in Ukraine at the crossroads: analyses and ideas for a sustainable development. Afisha, LvivGoogle Scholar
  49. Nijnik M (2004) To an economist’s perception on sustainability in forestry-in-transition. For Policy Econ 6:403–413CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Nijnik M, van Kooten GC (2000) Forestry in the Ukraine: the road ahead? For Policy Econ 1:139–151CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Nordberg M (2007) Ukraine reforms in forestry 1990–2000. For Policy Econ 9:713–729CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. North MP, Keeton WS (2008) Emulating natural disturbance regimes: an emerging approach for sustainable forest management. In: Lafortezza R, Chen J, Sanesi G, Crow TR (eds) Patterns and processes in forest landscapes—multiple use and sustainable management. Springer, The NetherlandsGoogle Scholar
  53. Noss RF, Scott JM (1997) Ecosystem protection and restoration: the core of ecosystem management. In: Boyce MS, Haney A (eds) Ecosystem management: applications for sustainable forest and wildlife resources. Yale University Press, New HavenGoogle Scholar
  54. Nunery JS, Keeton WS (2010) Forest carbon storage in the northeastern United States: net effects of harvesting frequency, post-harvest retention, and wood products. For Ecol Manag 259:1363–1375CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Palang H, Printsmann A, Konkoly Gyuro E, Urbanc M, Skowronek E, Woloszyn W (2006) The forgotten rural landscapes of Central and Eastern Europe. Landsc Ecol 21:347–357CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Parpan V Shparyk Y, Parpan T (2005) Virgin and natural forests in Ukraine: state, diversity, and protection. In: Commarmot B, Hamor FD (eds) Natural forests in the temperate zone of Europe—values and utilization, conference proceedings Mukachevo 13–17 OctGoogle Scholar
  57. Polyakov M, Sydor T (2006) Forestry in Ukraine: the road ahead? comment. For Policy Econ 8:6–9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Ray DG, Seymour RS, Scott NS, Keeton WS (2009) Mitigating climate change with managed forests: balancing expectations, opportunity, and risk. J For 107(1):50–51Google Scholar
  59. Ruddell S, Sampson R, Smith M, Giffen R, Cathcart J, Hagan J, Sosland D, Godbee J, Heissenbuttel J, Lovett S, Helms J, Price W, Simpson R (2007) The role for sustainably managed forests in climate change mitigation. J For 105(6):314–319Google Scholar
  60. Sabatier PA, Focht W, Lubell M, Trachtenberg Z, Vedlitz A, Matlock M (eds) (2005) Swimming upstream- collaborative approaches to watershed management. MIT Press, LondonGoogle Scholar
  61. Seidl R, Rammer W, Lasch P, Badeck FW, Lexer MJ (2008) Does conversion of even-aged, secondary coniferous forests affect carbon sequestration? a simulation study under changing environmental conditions. Silva Fenn 42:369–386Google Scholar
  62. Seymour RS (2005) Integrating natural disturbance parameters into conventional silvicultural systems: experience from the Acadian forest of northeastern North America. In: Peterson CE, Maguire DA (eds) Balancing ecosystem values: innovative experiments for sustainable forestry, USDA Forest Service General Technical Report PNW-GTR-635Google Scholar
  63. Shparyk YS, Parpan VI (2004) Heavy metal pollution and forest health in the Ukrainian Carpathians. Environ Pollut 130:55–63CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Shulyarenko A, Yatsyuk M, Shulyarenko I (2002) Causes and peculiarities of recent floods on the Dniester River. In: Marsalek J, Watt WE, Zeman E, Siker F (eds) Flood issues in contemporary water management. NATO Science Series, Environmental Security, vol 71Google Scholar
  65. Sikor T (2003) The commons in transition: agrarian and environmental change in central and Eastern Europe. Environ Manag 34:270–280CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Soloviy IP, Cubbage FW (2007) Forest policy in aroused society: Ukrainian post-orange revolution challenges. For Policy Econ 10:60–69CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Soloviy IP, Yaremchuk O (2001) Socio-economic and environmental aspects of afforestation in Ukraine. In: Essman HS, Pettenella D (eds) Forestry in Ukraine at the crossroads: analyses and ideas for a sustainable development. Afisha, LvivGoogle Scholar
  68. Stoyko SM (1998) Virgin ecosystems of the Carpathians and their significance for biological diversity conservation and maintenance of the sustainable development of forestry. In: Issues of sustainable development in the Carpathian region, vol 2, RakhivGoogle Scholar
  69. Strochinskii AA, Pozyvailo YM, Jungst SE (2001) Forests and forestry in Ukraine: standing on the brink of a market ecology. J For 99:34–38Google Scholar
  70. Swanson FJ, Franklin JF (1992) New forestry principles from ecosystem analysis of Pacific Northwest forests. Ecol Appl 2:262–274CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Szwagrzyk J, Gazda A (2007) Above-ground standing biomass and tree species diversity in natural stands of Central Europe. J Veg Sci 18:563–570CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  72. Turnock D (1999) Sustainable rural tourism in the Romanian Carpathians. Geogr J 165:192–199CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Victor DG, Nakicenovic N, Victor N (2001) The Kyoto Protocol emission allocations: windfall surpluses for Russia and Ukraine. Clim Chang 49:263–277CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  74. World Bank (2006) Ukraine forestry sector note: status and opportunities for development. The World Bank, WashingtonGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • William S. Keeton
    • 1
    Email author
  • Per K. Angelstam
    • 2
  • Yurij Bihun
    • 3
  • Mykola Chernyavskyy
    • 4
  • Sarah M. Crow
    • 1
  • Anatoliy Deyneka
    • 5
  • Marine Elbakidze
    • 2
  • Joshua Farley
    • 7
  • Volodymyr Kovalyshyn
    • 9
  • Ivan Kruhlov
    • 6
  • Bohdan Mahura
    • 10
  • Stepan Myklush
    • 11
  • Jared S. Nunery
    • 1
  • Ihor Soloviy
    • 8
  • Lyudmyla Zahvoyska
    • 8
  1. 1.Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural ResourcesUniversity of VermontBurlingtonUSA
  2. 2.Swedish University of Agricultural SciencesSkinnskattebergSweden
  3. 3.Shelterwood SystemsJerichoUSA
  4. 4.Department of EcologyUkrainian National Forestry UniversityLvivUkraine
  5. 5.Lviv Regional Forestry AdministrationState Forestry Committee of UkraineLvivUkraine
  6. 6.Faculty of GeographyIvan Franko National UniversityLvivUkraine
  7. 7.Community Development and Applied EconomicsUniversity of VermontBurlingtonUSA
  8. 8.Institute of Ecological EconomicsUkrainian National Forestry UniversityLvivUkraine
  9. 9.Department of Forest EconomicsUkrainian National Forestry UniversityLvivUkraine
  10. 10.Department of Forest EngineeringUkrainian National Forestry UniversityLvivUkraine
  11. 11.Department of Forest Inventory and ManagementUkrainian National Forestry UniversityLvivUkraine

Personalised recommendations