The United Nations’ International Day of Forests, held annually on the 21st of March, offers a great possibility for us to consider the importance of forests. One third of the Earth’s land area is covered with forests. In addition to providing timber, forests also supply a wide variety of other ecosystem services vital to life – both to man and animals. Among several material and non-material goods, forests supply fresh water, for example, and act as carbon sinks.
Even though deforestation remains a global phenomenon, forest coverage has increased in Europe. Forests cover some 75 percent of Finland’s land area.
Towards the future, sustainably
In Finland, forests are of great importance, as we have always managed to make use of nature’s green gold. Forest-based industries form one of the founding pillars of our economy. Also, the so-called “Everyman’s Right” enables almost endless possibilities for various outdoor activities and picking wild berries in forests, for instance.
The Finnish Forest Industries Federation supports forest management that is based on sustainable development. Forest management according to FSC or PEFC forest certification standards take ecological, social and economic sustainability into account. In addition, nature management in commercial forests promotes ecological sustainability and is an integral part of forest management. Cost-efficient conservation also has its place in securing biodiversity in forests.
The Finnish Forest Industries Federation wishes everyone a happy International Day of Forests!