Wood as an eco-sustainable raw material to be enhanced, woods and forests in the mountains and poplar groves − in particular − in the plains are a unique heritage of our country and in particular in Lombardy: it is the third Italian region by forest area with its 619,893 hectares covering 26 percent of the Lombardy region and 2 per cent of the national territory, registering an increase in the area of 2.1 per cent in the last decade. The forest areas are concentrated in particular in the provinces of Brescia (28 percent), Sondrio (20 percent), Bergamo (18 percent) and Como (10 percent).
This is what emerges from the report on the state of the forests in Lombardy edited by Ersaf, the Regional Authority for Agriculture and Forestry Services, presented in Milan, at the FederlegnoArredo headquarters. At the speakers’ table the director Sebastiano Cerullo, Alessandro Fede Pellone, President Ersaf, Andrea Negri, president Afi and Fabio Rolfi, councilor for Agriculture and Green Systems of Lombardy Region. Photography at the center of a debate on the prospects and the future of this heritage, too often subject to abandonment − with serious damage to the territory − and underutilized from an economic point of view unlike what happens in other European countries such as Austria or Germany, large timber exporters.
“The numbers in the report confirm that we must continue to promote an Italian forest culture based on management and not on abandonment” commented Sebastiano Cerullo, general manager of FederlegnoArredo. “Our federation has been committed to these issues for some time, especially with regard to poplar cultivation, which represents an essential raw material for the supply chain, starting from the panel industry, as well as raising awareness of the urgent approval of the implementing decrees of the forestry Consolidation Act in order to reactivate the real and only “green mine” we have in Italy too “. For Cerullo, it is also necessary to reduce the paradoxical dependence of the sector from abroad: “Italy − he explains − stands at the top of the countries that import timber, thus indicating a scarce enhancement of the national productive realities of excellence. It is essential to start a widespread and effective sustainable forest management, which enhances ecosystem services and increases the share of Italian wood used by businesses, supporting the sawmills engaged in enhancing local wood. In a supply chain logic. The hope is that the photography provided by Ersaf is as a stimulus to focus on the Italian forest and wood transformation companies “.
“Ersaf’s report − added Andrea Negri, president of the Italian Forestry Association − is a precious document for the community and for the production chain linked to the forest world. The evolution of forest resources is essential for defining and implementing planning strategies of their management”. Four fundamental aspects emerge from the Report. The first is the confirmation of the continuous growth of forestry firms’ ability to invest. The second, the certified areas at the Lombard level have doubled. The third is the Vaia storm of October 2018: it was a wake-up call to understand how we must manage our forests and protect surfaces.
“We want Lombardy’s forests to be increasingly an environmental and economic resource. This is why we are investing in the supply chain and certification of wood with important results given that in 2019 we went from 38,000 to 71,000 certified hectares, equal to 11.4 per cent of the total in Lombardy − stressed the regional councilor Fabio Rolfi. “Certification means not only eco-sustainable interventions, but also having a raw material that can be used by the processing industry with an important economic impact and a decrease in transport from abroad. Lombardy must be able to exploit this extraordinary resource in a sustainable way “.