Forests should be carbon sinks, not fuel, campaigners say

Environmental group Fern has warned about the impacts on European forests of the EU’s long term climate strategy, saying that it relies too much on burning wood

Environmental group Fern has warned about the impacts on European forests of the EU’s long term climate strategy, saying that it relies too much on burning wood rather than protecting trees as carbon sinks.

The organisation argues in a policy briefing that the EU’s long-term climate strategy views forests primarily as an alternative energy source to fossil fuels, risking harm to both the climate and the environment.

According to Fern’s analysis, most of the scenarios proposed by the European Commission for the future climate policy show a decline from the current amount of CO2 European forests remove from the atmosphere. In addition, it says,  more demand for wood would lead to the conversion of natural forests into faster growing plantations (50% of forested areas could be converted by 2065, according to the paper) and to an increase of imports.

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