Scientific advisory board stresses need for forest adaptation in face of “existential threat”
Clean Energy Wire
The adaptation of forests to the consequences of climate change is the most important task facing forest policymakers today, according to a new report by Germany’s Scientific Advisory Board on Forest Policy, which advises the federal government on the management of the country’s forest land. Forests are facing an existential threat from the consequences of climate change, which has already damaged some 280,000 hectares of forest in Germany that have to be reforested. The Scientific Advisory Board recommends a number of measures as part of an active and comprehensive forest management, including maintenance and development of resilient and adaptable forests; improvement of forest protection against biotic risks; extreme event risk management; an increase of biodiversity; soil and water protection and the promotion of sustainable wood use. The German food and agriculture ministry (BMEL) has already started a 1.5 billion euro forest conversion programme, the largest ever in Germany, planting mostly pure deciduous and mixed forests with a high proportion of deciduous trees on several thousand hectares, which are site-adapted and climate-stable.
In its new Forest Strategy 2050, issued in September, the BMEL said Germany’s forests needed to be adapted to global warming in order to remain intact and contribute to balancing the country’s emissions.