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Södra Study: Good Forest Management Could Reduce Global Emissions By 50%

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VÄXJÖ, Sweden, Dec. 11, 2015 (Press Release) -Politicians should place greater emphasis on the forest as a means of tackling the climate challenges. According to a study conducted by Södra, the sustainable management of the world’s production forests could yield a reduction in global emissions of up to 50 percent.

We need to significantly reduce our greenhouse gas emissions to avoid potentially irreversible effects on our planet that could put the very existence of our society at risk.

“Many people are unaware of the role the forest plays in the context of climate change. In the forest industry, we have fallen short when it comes to explaining the correlation between the two. Growing, well-managed forest binds carbon dioxide, thus preventing it from entering the atmosphere,” says Lena Ek, Chairman of Södra Skogsägarna.

The world’s forests contain more than 1,000 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide – more than all of the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. Unfortunately, since deforestation is greater than afforestation, the more recent statistics show that approximately 1.5 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide is lost annually. A study conducted by Södra Skogsägarna shows that if effective forest management practices were adopted in the world’s production forests, it would be possible to bind a further 9-17 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. This corresponds to 30-50 percent of global emissions.

“We must work together to highlight the potential of the forest to lead society towards a fossil-free future with renewable products that are also reused and recycled,” says Lena Ek.

The forest and forest products play a key role in achieving our goal of a fossil-free society. The main advantage is the potential to replace products made from fossil materials with products made from wood. This reduces the emissions from finite materials, at the same time as we manufacture renewable wood products that continue to store carbon dioxide throughout their lifetime. An increasing demand for forests to make renewable products will also result in more growing forest that also absorbs and binds carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

This article was originally published on December 11, 2015 by PPI Magazine.