In Finland 70 % of the annual growth increment is harvested, while in Europe the amount utilized is 66%. The most recent State of Europe’s Forests report shows that the forest resources in Europe are not depleting due to the use of wood.

The State of Europe’s Forests 2015 report was published in the 7th Ministerial Conference on the Protection of Forests in Europe (FOREST EUROPE), held in Madrid in October 2015.  The State of Europe’s Forests 2015 report compiles the latest information on forest resources, including the following extracts:

  • Forests cover 33% of Europe’s and 73% of Finland’s land area.
  • In Europe, 66% of the annual forest growth increment on average is harvested, while in Finland that amount is 70%.
  • In Europe, approximately 30 million hectares of forests, or approximately 12% of forest area, have been protected to conserve biodiversity. In Finland, the corresponding figure is 13%.
  • European forests sequester approximately 9% of total European greenhouse gas emissions. In Finland, forests sequester over 40% of the total national greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Wood energy consumption per capita in Europe is highest in Finland and Sweden.
  • The forestry sector contributes approximately 0.8% to the European GDP, while the corresponding figure in Finland is one of the highest in Europe at approximately 4%.

Luke plays a key role in updating the indicators for sustainable forestry

The Ministerial Conference adopted updated pan-European indicators for the monitoring of sustainable forestry. The updating of the indicators was led by the Natural Resources Institute Finland.

The updated indicators enable better assessment of the effects of climate change on forests and carbon sequestration by forests, the significance of various forest products and services, and biodiversity, for example.

Today, the most topical issues with respect to European forests are the role of forests in climate change mitigation, the promotion of the green economy and the related green jobs in rural areas, the bioeconomy and development towards a low-carbon society.