Want to save the planet? Chop down more trees

World

Want to save the planet? Chop down more trees

Or, or least, that’s the conclusion of a study by the Swedish forestry industry, and it’s not as crackpot as it sounds

Jesper Starn

Sweden’s forestry industry has defended itself against critics who say trees should be left in the forest to bind carbon and help fight climate- change.

At the heart of the conflict is the EU’s need to regulate sustainable activities across the bloc, where forest-based carbon sinks are on average declining in net terms. That has prompted concerns that forestry accumulates a so-called carbon debt because trees take several decades to grow back.

In densely forested Sweden, the industry is keen to show trees are, overall, sequestering more carbon dioxide than is released. The companies, which make their profit from pulp, packaging and timber, commissioned a study that shows a bigger climate benefit from cutting trees than reducing or halting harvests...

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