2011 has been declared the "International Year of Forests" by the United Nations. This is why the theme selected for this year's Europa stamp series will focus on the "forest" topic.
Forests are vital to the survival of mankind and today require our attention more than ever before. They support life on Earth by protecting soil and water, help stabilize our climate and supply us with energy and natural, durable materials.
Luxembourg forests are now managed following the principles of lasting forest management. These principles aim at maintaining a forest's ecological, economic and social functions. With the goal of preserving the many services that forests provide, it is crucial to protect forests against threats such as climate change, atmospheric pollution and urban sprawl.
Alan Johnston Ph.D., the artist who created these stamps, has travelled a great deal and has worked at the National Museum of Natural History in Luxembourg. While working outdoors, the artist is inspired and affected by the climactic, ecological and geological characteristics of the environment, conferring a documentary-like authenticity on his works.