“Sustainable forestry must equally take into account the economic, social and environmental aspects of forests and respect local views”, underlined Herbert Dorfmann MEP, EPP Group Spokesman on Agriculture, on the proposal for a European Forest Strategy.
“Forests and forestry create a value chain that is fundamental for jobs and welfare, not only in rural communities but also in wider regions all over Europe. They support a wide variety of SMEs and over 16 million private forest owners who own 60 percent of European forests and of whom many are family farmers”, recalled Dorfmann.
“Without creating incentives, supporting innovations and respecting local solutions, the carbon-storage potential of European forests can never be fully achieved”, said Dorfmann. He underlined that the Forest Strategy must respect the subsidiarity principle and the Member States’ competence on the issue: “Forest-related issues cannot be solved by a one-size-fits-all top-down approach.”
Thanks to sustainable forest management, European forests have increased by 9 percent over the past 30 years. At the same time, the area of protected forests has also significantly grown.
“It is of the utmost importance that we continue on this same path to fight climate change and the loss of biodiversity. In this respect, we agree with the targets of the strategy. This is exactly why we must carefully and thoroughly evaluate the best ways to reach this target”, concluded Dorfmann.
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 179 Members from all EU Member States