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Forests are the green gold of Europe

By February 21, 2024March 19th, 2024No Comments

Forests play a vital role in the green transition of our societies. European forests range from the pine forests of the Canary Islands in the south, to the birch forests north of the polar circle in Sweden and Finland. Applying the same set of policies for a region as diverse as this is challenging, if not impossible.

The Future of Forestry has together with forestry organisations from Austria, France and Poland produced the report Same but different – European forests and forestry on the diversity of the European forests and forestry management. The purpose of this report is to display the heterogeneity of European forests and forestry, and to provide an updated report of the status of European forests.

Forest areas in Europe have increased in the last three decades from 145 million to 159 million hectares, thanks to natural processes, afforestation, sustainable management, and active restoration. Forestry innovation needs to continue in order for biodiversity to be better understood and for new wood-based products that can replace fossil-based products to continue to be developed.

In the forest debate forest management is often portrayed as one of two distinct types: continuous cover forestry or periodic cover forestry. In reality, the bulk of European forest countries apply some version of either patch cutting or small clearcutting, with local exceptions.

Our report emphasizes the importance of tailored approaches that celebrate the diversity within the EU. It’s not about uniformity but about adapting strategically. Forests, with their various benefits, have become essential in steering us toward a greener future.

Read and download report here Same but different (PDF).


Visit our partners:

Fachverband der Holzindustrie Österreichs

Les Coopératives Forestières