Forest dynamics in Europe and their ecological consequences

Publication Created 27 Nov 2018 Published 27 Nov 2018
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Forests used to constitute the dominant natural vegetation in most of Europe, covering up to 80 % of the land surface. However, the current extent and condition of forest ecosystems are the result of the process of human appropriation (domestication), which started more than 5000 years ago. By the end of the 17th century, more than half of Europe’s original forest had disappeared and covered just a few percent of the total land area in countries such as Denmark or Ireland. In response to forest depletion, stricter forest management practices emerged to replant, protect and maintain forest cover and the multi-functionality of forests in terms of wood production and protection against, for example, soil and wind erosion.
Publication Created 27 Nov 2018 Published 27 Nov 2018
Briefing No 16/2018
Forests used to constitute the dominant natural vegetation in most of Europe, covering up to 80 % of the land surface. However, the current extent and condition of forest ecosystems are the result of the process of human appropriation (domestication), which started more than 5000 years ago. By the end of the 17th century, more than half of Europe’s original forest had disappeared and covered just a few percent of the total land area in countries such as Denmark or Ireland. In response to forest depletion, stricter forest management practices emerged to replant, protect and maintain forest cover and the multi-functionality of forests in terms of wood production and protection against, for example, soil and wind erosion.

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: 978-92-9480-032-9
: TH-AM-18-018-EN-N

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