THE IMPORTANCE OF FORESTS IN FINLAND AND THE NFP

pargaru-draganThere are many aspects to look at regarding the forests in Finland, first and foremost are the ecological effects.

CLIMATE: Growing forests intake CO2, temporarily less, however

WATERS: Load of forestry decreases; Local overloads possible

LANDSCAPES: Landscape effects of forest harvesting increase

BIODIVERSITY: Increased harvesting increases risks

SOIL NUTRIENT LEVEL: Whole tree harvesting of energy wood?

In this country they run a national forest program. This program in needed because the change of operating environment like: Globalisation of production and economy; Raw-wood tolls of the Russian market; Possibilities of reneable energy; Challenges in energy production; Climate change; Growing importance of environmental issues; Growing significance of international agreements; Social significance of forests to people is growing and changing; Values are changing.

This program is focused on 6 areas:

  1. Finland provides a competitive environment for sustainable forestry and forest industry
  2. Use of forests against climate change and as a source of clean energy
  3. Safeguarding forest biodiversity and environmental advantages
  4. Promotion of recreational and cultural use of forests
  5. Strengthening the expertiseof Finnish forest sector and its public acceptability
  6. Finland’s international forest policy promotes sustainable use and management of forests

 

  1. Finland provides a competitive environment for sustainable forestry and forest industry

Increasing of process value, development of new products and services; value of production increases by 20%.

Utilisation of cutting possibilities; Cuttings increase by 10-15 million m3

Sustainability of wood production; Better level of silviculture, growth->100 mill. m3/year

Condition of traffic network; Seasonal traffic limitation for max 500 km, Basic improvement of rail roads, Basic improvement of forest roads 4.1km/year

Profitability of private forestry and the (small) sizes of forest holdings; Net income of private forestry ->120 €/ha/year, Average forest holding size->50 ha in 2050

Need of labour and forest entrepreneurship; Forestry 23000 persons, Forest industry 50000 persons, Proportion of women >25%.

Necessary measures:

  • Research and development (product development, technology, work procedures)
  • Financing Act of Sustainable Forestry
  • Advicory work, use of the Forest inventory data
  • Taxation means to support forestry
  • New forms for forest holdings (co-operational forests)
  • Promoting entrepreneurship
  • Road investments and maintaining

 

  1. Use of forests against climate change and as a source of clean energy

Use of wood products; More carbon storage into wood products (delayed return to atmosphere); Annual use of sawn wood to be raised to 1,2 m3 per capita (0,94 m3 in 2006)

Climate change and forestry; If NFP implemented, annual carbon storage of trees and soil first decrease but is positive with some 10-20 million tn CO2-ekv/year (2002 – 06 average of 35,4 mill. tn/year). In the following decades increases at least to the level of 2008.

Use of wood-based energy; Raise of wood chips energy to 8-12 million m3/year (3,4 mill. m3 in 2006); (wood to replace fossil fuels)

 

  1. Safeguarding forest biodiversity and environmental advantages

Necessary measures:

  • METSO Programe (2008-2016)
  • Older forest protection programmes completed in time
  • Research increased in studying the effects of forestry (harvesting, ditching, soil management) on water quality of lakes and rivers; results taken into account in guidelines and legislation
  • Natural management of water systems

 

  1. Promotion of recreational and cultural use of forests

Recreational use and “everyman’s right”; Everyman’s rights will be preserved, needs of recreational use and hunting are considered in forest management. In 2015, contracts of natural and recreational values has become a standard procedure

Nature tourism and nature products; Entrepreneur ship based on nature tourism is promoted; Livelihood is developed to process nature products

Forest – and wood-based culture; Forest – and wood-based culture is supported and promoted; Culture inheritance placed in state-owned forests mapped and evaluated by 2015; data collection has start in private forests

Necessary measures needed for this are: Promoting entrepreneurship, Definition and product development of immaterial values of forests; development of trade of recreational values and other forest-owner-based business chances, Trekking routes, Mapping of culture heritage sites in the forests, Use of the Regional forestry programmes to compromise different interests in the use of forests

 

  1. Strengthening the expertise of Finnish forest sector and its public acceptability

The measures that are necessary to be taken:

  • Research strategy of the forest cluster
  • Information centres and networking of different bodies and actors
  • Reorganisation of sectorial research
  • Development of the structure and content of forestry education, suggested by the working group of the Ministry of Education
  • Programmes for children and young people prepared by Forestry Centres, to strengthen their forest knowledge
  • Establishment of forecasting procedures

 

  1. Finland’s international forest policy promotes sustainable use and management of forests

Necessary measures

  • Global net decrease of forest cover to less than 9 Mha/y
  • Forests as a carbon sink
  • FLEGT
  • Applying ecological principles in public orders, certification of forests
  • Use of renewable energy sources
  • Competitiveness, new products
  • EU Forest Action Plan 2007-2011
  • National Forest Programmes
  • Better coordination of forestry related issues on different levels (FAO, UNFF, MCPFE)

 

Also the economical and social effects must be taken into consideration as the value of forest sector’s production would increase 500-700 mill.€/year, also Forest-owners’ income would increase 400-500 mill. €/year; State’s taxpayer income would increase ca. 200 milj.€/year; Value of nature tourism would increase 200 milj. €

Without National Forest Program the employment of forest sector would decrease by 5 000 persons more before 2015.

If wood import (from Russia) cannot be replaced by domestic wood supply, leading to mills and sawmills closures, then more than 8.000 jobs will be lost for this reason and State’s tax-payer income would decrease 500-800 mill. €/year.

Ways of implementing

  • As an ordinary part of public administration
  • Legislation, budgeting, incentives, management by results, strategic planning, advising, media
  • Cross-sectoral programmes and strategies
  • National and regional projects
  • Private sector activities
  • Financing from different ministries and private sector

ION PÂRGARU – Ph.D Valahia University Târgoviște.

ALEXANDRU DRĂGAN – Ph.Student Within Valahia University Târgoviște.

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