The dual positive climate effect of forests

Forests sequester large amounts of carbon dioxide as they grow. However, they also have considerable climate impact when they are felled because products produced using wood form forests replace fossil-based products so that oil and coal can be left in the ground.  “We must consider both these parameters to be able to make political decisions that have the greatest positive impacts on the climate. There is a holistic calculation model that helps do just that,” says Peter Holmgren, an expert on forestry and climate.

The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change states that saving the climate rests on a two-pronged approach of reducing fossil emissions and increasing carbon storage. 

“The forestry industry contributes to both of these approaches, but at EU level there tends to be more focus on carbon storage in forests. The contribution forests make to reducing fossil emissions is overlooked, even though this is actually how the forestry sector provides the greatest benefit. When you use forests as a raw material to build houses and manufacture packaging and biofuels, for example, this replaces products made from cement and plastic that have a negative impact on the climate,” explains Peter. 
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