#ResponsibleForestry campaign – Responsibly managing Europe’s most precious resource

 

PRESS RELEASE
Brussels, 17 March 2022

Today, EUSTAFOR launched its new communication campaign #ResponsibleForestry. The first video “Sustainable Forest Management 101” explaining the main principles of Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) is available here.

Forests cover almost one third of the entire continent of Europe and today European State Forest Management Organisations (SFMOs) manage almost one third of this vital resource. For decades SFMOs have managed their forests responsibly and sustainably, growing forests to produce wood, protect nature, provide green spaces for the citizens of Europe and help tackle climate change.

In recent times, more attention has been paid to forests and the many benefits they deliver to society. In an environment of ever-increasing climate change concerns, biodiversity emergencies and increased use of the outdoors by the public, the demand on forests have never been higher, but equally the opportunities for well managed forests have never been greater.

Sustainably managed multifunctional forests hold the key to responding to those demands, ensuring our forest ecosystems’ continuous regrowth and creation of renewable, sustainable raw materials, while combating climate change, protecting nature and providing outdoor recreational opportunities for society. Forestry professionals across Europe have embraced the multifunctionality of forests and manage their forests to deliver these multiple benefits. This multifunctionality approach, driven by sustainability should guide all forest policies, supporting the development of a new European bioeconomy, delivering ecosystem services, pivoting the European market towards a new and correct post-fossil economy and contributing to energy self-sufficiency. We therefore call for forest-related policies to recognise and safeguard the multiple functions of forests and balance the different priorities within the sector.

The forests of Europe are not homogenous, but diverse and fragile ecosystems. Responsible forestry means managing and regenerating healthy forests based on the variability of regional forest practices and local tailor-made care and craftsmanship. Recognition, maintenance, and development of those practices is crucially important for the health of European forests now and in the future. Current national policies guarantee adaptive and dynamic sustainable forest management and we strongly advise for the preservation of flexible forest management, which is supported by a robust system of national strategies, programs and tools. Recognition and support of local tailor-made experience in growing healthy and diverse forests is more important now than ever before.

Finally, the role of wood, trees and forests in helping to fight climate change by both removing and storing carbon and also substituting fossil heavy conventional materials is critical for the development of a new European bioeconomy. Recognising the value of wood as renewable and truly sustainable raw material with a positive contribution to combating global warming must become a priority; quite simply wood can save the world.

The challenge of prioritising, balancing and delivering different needs from the forests of Europe is high. The faster we work together to create a united and sustainable vision, supported by policy, the better the results will be for everyone.

#ResponsibleForestry represents the European state forests’ understanding on how to manage forests for a future-fit Europe.

Landing page of the campaign: https://eustafor.eu/public-campaigns/

For further information, please contact:
Sophie Hugon – EUSTAFOR Communications Officer
sophie.hugon(@)eustafor.eu

For more information on our association:
Visit our website at www.eustafor.eu;
Follow @EUSTAFOR on Twitter and European State Forest Association |EUSTAFOR on LinkedIn.

Published 05/05/2022, Brussels

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