Protected areas, Natura 2000 network and Forests

Forests

Foresta_SassoFratino.jpgIn our Region, forests cover about 543,000 hectares, up to 611,000 hectares, also considering other wood-covered areas, such as shrubs, poplars and other tree plantations: a quarter of regional land is covered by forest.

These are mainly diffused on hills and mountain areas, whereas forests are lacking from plains and valleys, apart from a few exceptions on the coast, i.e. the pinewoods of Ravenna or the Bosco della Mesola.

Quantitative and quality growth of woods is a key factor to face some of the hardest challenges of society today, protecting and improving local biodiversity status and increasing carbon sequestration, for instance.

From the Second World War, in fact, Italian forests have almost doubled their areas: nowadays nearly a third of national territory is covered by woods. Such transformation was due to reforestation programs, massively adopted during the second half of last century and, above all, by natural process of wood expansion over abandoned pastures and cultivated lands, caused itself by a gradual mass depopulation. 

Publicly owned forests consist of 33.000 hectares, having, in general, an extremely high environmental value, which is primarily preserved by the protected areas system (32.000 ha) and the Natura 2000 network (110.000 ha), indeed the 85% of the two National Parks area is covered by woods. An extraordinary example of this is the Strict Nature Reserve of Sasso Fratino, property of the State, which was recently inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage List “Ancient and Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and Other Regions of Europe”.

Sustainable use of forestry resources protects the environment and assure to the community several irreplaceable goods and services, such as timber (7.000 ha of forests are certified by PEFC), mushrooms (e.g. the PGI Fungo di Borgotaro), oxygen, soil and landscape preservation.

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published on 2018/11/19 13:16:00 GMT+2 last modified 2019-04-17T14:16:41+02:00

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