Publications Forestry and wood Europe

Wood industry: What are European countries doing?

30 October 2023 - Foreword of the week - By : Julia GRIMAULT

Year after year, France becomes aware of the drastic deterioration in the carbon sink of its forests. Tree mortality increases sharply with droughts and health crises. Yet France needs this carbon sink to achieve its climate objectives and needs to preserve it by improving the resilience of its forests, but also – and this is less obvious – by making the best possible use of the harvested wood from the forests. France’s climate strategy is counting heavily on maximising the carbon sink in wood products, i.e. making greater use of the wood harvested to manufacture long-lasting products, particularly in the construction industry. Some products store carbon over the long term, and are not only those that we imagine at first glance, as we showed in a previous study. 

 

But the development of these wood products and sectors will not happen on its own. As with the ecological transition as a whole, market trends and innovation will not be sufficient to drive change quickly enough. We need steering and planning, with public policies and associated funding. Which is why we took a closer look at  European countries, to see how they have developed longer-lasting uses for wood.  

 

In this new study, you will discover how Germany has temporarily subsidised demand for bio-based insulation to enable manufacturers to invest and industries to develop. You will also discover that a better balance needs to be struck between incentives for the different uses of wood, one that favours material use over energy use, but also the “less noble” uses of wood in construction.

 

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