In a clear nod to the strategic importance of agroforestry, the term has now cropped up in both the European Green Deal, the European Commission's roadmap for making Europe the first climate neutral continent by 2050, and the EU’s flagship new food policy, the Farm to Fork (F2F) strategy.
While recognising the positive role of forests in mitigating global warming, the European Commission has riled the agroforestry and biomass industries by stating its intention of limiting growth in the sector.
The European Commission on Thursday (17 September) defended its plan to bring carbon removals from agriculture, land use and forestry into the EU’s updated climate target for 2030, saying this was in line with UNFCCC standards.
The European Commission's commendable move to aim for emission reductions of "at least 55%" by 2030 risks being completely undermined if the target also takes into account “reductions and removals” from forest growth and tree planting schemes, warns Bert Metz.
The forests in Europe that can be considered “old growth” – and therefore declared protected areas – depends on the definition, says Petri Sarvamaa. “And that’s where the political fight begins,” he told EURACTIV in an interview.
The Green Deal promoted by European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has the potential to strengthen European, as well as global, forests and make a significant contribution to the fight against climate change, writes Hannah Mowat.
Donald Trump surprised environmentalists when he announced the US would join the World Economic Forum’s one trillion tree planting initiative, writes Peter Wohlleben. However such schemes can turn into disasters if they aren't implemented the right way, he warns.
Bioenergies, including wood, biofuels and forest-based industries, should be recognised under the EU’s draft sustainable finance taxonomy, in line with the recently-updated renewable energy directive, an industry coalition has claimed.
Climate change is causing problems for Germany's forests, as large woodland areas are dying. The ministry of agriculture is now planning to unlock millions of euros in aid to help prevent new forests from dying out. EURACTIV Germany reports.
Almost three out of four companies with a significant footprint on the world's forests have failed to provide data on their impact on global deforestation in 2018, according to a study published by environmental non-profit organisation CDP on Tuesday (16 July).
There is no debate that burning wood for energy emits more greenhouse gases per unit of energy than burning fossil fuels. Yet the EU's renewable energy directive continues to uphold that burning forest wood is "carbon neutral," write Jean-Pascal van Ypersele and Mary S. Booth.
A group of plaintiffs from Estonia, France, Ireland, Romania, Slovakia, Sweden, and the US are filing a lawsuit against the European Union on Monday (4 March) to challenge the inclusion of forest biomass in the bloc’s renewable energy directive.
As the world awakes to the threat posed by palm oil and soy to our forests, it’s in danger of overlooking how paper and packaging drives industrial logging, mis-shapes millions of hectares of forest landscapes and creates monoculture plantations, writes Sini Eräjää.
Campaigners have warned about the environmental dangers of bioenergy, saying burning wood is not low-carbon. However, forests can – and must – be managed in a sustainable way that maintains or even increases the carbon stock, writes Tony Juniper.
Opposition to the use of forest biomass for energy generation is going mainstream, writes Linde Zuidema, as evidence builds that wood is being burnt in large scale inefficient coal-fired power stations.
Biomass is only sustainable and renewable when sourced from responsibly managed forests that are growing, not from old growth, primary forest or protected biodiverse areas. And this should be independently verified, writes Dr Rebecca Heaton.
The need for fast, accurate and balanced information is always important. We value EURACTIV's good, independent journalism and support this initiative
Mella Frewen, Director General of FoodDrinkEurope
EURACTIV plays a vital role in bringing Europe closer to its citizens. EURACTIV has long recognised that the story of Europe has to be told across the continent, and not just in Brussels. We need to support a truly European and informed debate.