- Timber stock continues to grow – overdue forestry operations are decreasing
- Environmental anxiety could become an epidemic – but treatments exist, for both the concern and the environment
- Area of productive forest land under strict protection has grown fivefold since early 1980s in Finland – almost all structural features describing forest biodiversity have improved significantly
- Recycling paper is sustainable economy – but without new wood fibre from forests it would end quickly
- Finns appreciate forest industry – share of environmental critics only 25 percent
According to a nature management evaluation carried out by the Finnish Forest Centre, the quality of the management was good or extremely good on four regeneration felling areas out of five in 2017. The quality of nature management of Finnish family-owned forests has improved steadily until 2005. Since then it has been in slight decline.
In 2017, the quality of nature management was evaluated on 474 loggin sites, with a total atea of 1,796 hectares. 105 logging areas with known nature values were evaluated by selective sampling.
Extremely good or good results were reached on 79 percent of the sites. Tolerable results were reached on 14 percent of the sites. Only two percent were evaluated as poor.
In the evaluation, around one hundred extremely valuable habitats defined by the Forest Act were observed. Of these, 98 percent remained totally or nearly unchanged in the loggings.
As in previous years, most deficiencies were observed in regard to maintaining close vicinities of brooks and trickles. Safeguarding them can be improved by careful planning of harvesting operations.
Retention trees left unfelled in connection with regeneration fellings amounted up to similar figures as in 2016, 11.9 trunks per hectare on the average, while the recommendation is at least ten. Of the retention trees, 80 percent were alive.
As to the biodiversity, the most valuable retention trees are the ones with larger diameter than 20 centimetres, measured from breast-height. 32 percent of the trees were such. The combined volume of the total of retention trees was 67 percent.
According to Jarkko Partanen, Chief of Finance and Inspection at the Finnish Forest Centre, more attention should be paid on the sites and selection of the retention trees. They should be concentrated in groups in the vicinity of ecologically valuable sites, undergrowth should not be cleared around them and the soil should not be prepared.
Finnish Forest Centre follows the quality of nature management in Finnish family forests annually. Evaluation is based on the recommendations of nature management principles.