German Forest Summit: 3 ways to revive dying woods

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Germany’s forests were spared the flames, but have been suffering from bark beetle plagues, among other things In 2018, German forests burnt at around four times the rate they had in previous years, especially in the northern state of Brandenburg. But wildfires are not the problem for monoculture spruce conifer forests that dominate the wooded area covering one-third of Germany. These forests are instead falling victim to bark beetle plagues thriving in the dryer and hotter weather induced by global heating. Germany’s second national forest summit, appropriately titled “Waldsterben 2.0” (Forest Dieback), explores how to manage the German woods back to health in the midst of a climate crisis. Here are three suggestions that are on the table. 1. Better ecological forest management One of the key themes at the second national forest summit being hosted at the Wohlleben Forest Academy in western Germany is forest restructuring and ecological forest management. German woods have almost no old growth, and very little biodiversity. That makes them extremely vulnerable to climate change. This is due to poor forest management, say some of the experts attending the summit. The prime target for reformation is “artificial” conifer forests that were largely planted after […]

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