The Soignes forest is on a Unesco shortlist that might allow it to be recognized at natural heritage for the human race. The three regions submitted a formal request for part of the forest to be classified at the end of October. The forest is now on a list of 33 primary beech woods. Unesco wants to enlarge the European network of authentic beech wood,s after some of them were recognized in Romania and Germany.
The three regions of Belgium have signed a declaration of intention detailing their future projects for the Soignes forest, and submitted a formal request for recognition in October. Before the end of January, Belgium added the forest to its indicative list of property it considered cultural and/or natural heritage of exceptional universal value. They could be added to the list of World heritage sites.
Belgium has therefore joined a small group of 12 countries, with 33 sites or forests between them. The final application must be submitted before the end of January 2016. The third and final phase, Unesco’s final choice, will happen in Spring 2017.