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Biodiversity means the variety of life in genes, species, and in entire ecosystems. It is vital for the humankind. Sustainable forest management safeguards forest health and productivity, and protects biodiversity – whilst securing the long-term availability of our renewable resources. Our wood comes from European forests and eucalyptus plantations in Uruguay, Brazil, and China. Read more about our own forest holdings.
At Stora Enso, we are determined to put biodiversity at the top of the forest management agenda. We are working hard to become the industry leaders in biodiversity, and letting this mindset lead how we manage our forests.
We only harvest in forests where a nature value assessment has been carried out. We audit our biodiversity impact every year and undertake numerous far-reaching projects to safeguard key species and habitats. We will keep measuring the effects of our work. Our long-term goal is to measure biodiversity holistically to balance forest growth and biodiversity. Together with researchers, we are developing new methods to improve biodiversity as part of everyday forest management and wood sourcing.
We follow our progress in responsible forestry with a key performance indicator (KPI) that measures the proportion of land in wood production and harvesting owned or managed by Stora Enso that is covered by forest certification schemes. Biodiversity is an integral part of forest certifications including protection of valuable ecosystems. In addition Stora Enso is in the process of developing specific biodiversity indicators and has a long term research programme on biodiversity with the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU).
We promote biodiversity in everyday forest management on three spatial scales:
The Veracel Station centre, in the middle of an area of preserved rainforest habitat, conducts research and conserves native and endangered ecosystems while raising environmental awareness.
As trees take many years or decades to mature, long-term forestry planning is essential. Such planning involves ecological landscape plans and biodiversity assessments to identify, conserve and restore vital ecosystems. Stora Enso invests in conservation efforts by protecting and restoring significant areas of land. For more information, see our Sustainability 2020 listing our owned and managed lands.
We know the origin of all the wood we use: 100% comes from sustainable sources. We use various tools to ensure this, including forest certification and third-party traceability systems such as the Forest Stewardship Council's (FSC*) Chain of Custody/Controlled Wood scheme, the Chain of Custody/Due Diligence System of the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC), and the ISO 14001 environmental management standard. We follow our progress on responsible forestry with a key performance indicator measuring the proportion of land in wood production and harvesting owned and managed by Stora Enso that is covered by forest certification schemes. Our target is to maintain the high level of 96%. In 2020, coverage amounted to 98%. The proportion of third-party certified wood in our total wood supply was 78% in 2020.
We always ensure that the forests we harvest from are regenerated.
* Stora Enso Communications’ FSC® trademark license number is FSC-N001919.
Compliance with national legislation is only the starting point for our work. We actively support and implement voluntary forest conservation and restoration measures on lands owned, leased, and managed by Stora Enso, and in other areas where we purchase wood.
Forest planning involves finding ways to optimise wood production and conservation. We work together with forest owners to identify sensitive forest areas in need of protection. Our experts are trained to identify such areas and we regularly consult the authorities on these matters.
Around ¾ of the wood we use is purchased from European markets and ¼ originates from forests and tree plantations owned and managed by Stora Enso. Regardless of the origin, we ensure that all wood comes from sustainable sources where biodiversity values are secured. Stora Enso closely monitors the management of the forests and plantations from which it sources wood.
About 13% of our wood comes from tree plantations. Stora Enso never establishes plantations in natural forests, protected areas, or water-sensitive locations. We only use land with low biodiversity value, such as former pastureland.
In Brazil, our joint operation Veracel goes beyond regeneration by conserving and restoring areas of natural Atlantic Rainforest. Since the plantations were established, Veracel has worked systematically to protect and restore local biodiversity. Approximately half of Veracel’s 213 000 hectares of land are dedicated to rainforest preservation and restoration. In total, 7 200 hectares of forest has been restored between 1994 and the end of 2020. This work is part of a regional restoration programme that helps connect the remaining areas of valuable natural habitat to each other with forest corridors that enable wildlife to move more freely from one area to another. Veracel is the first tree plantation company in Brazil to receive FSC recognition for preserving and responsibly managing ecosystem services. Visit Veracel's website here.
Click here for a description of Stora Enso's biodiversity management practices in plantations.
We follow sustainable forestry best practices, including the protection of key biotopes and leaving additional voluntary set-aside areas, restoring endangered species’ habitats and leaving decaying wood in final felling areas.