Wood has shaped human development since the dawn of time. Fire, the wheel, the construction of villages and towns – none of these things would have been conceivable without wood. And even today, in the digital age, wood is our most important renewable resource and is still opening up new perspectives – in particular, as an essential factor in climate change mitigation. Thanks to its environmental value, we can use wood not only to conserve our resources, but also to improve our overall climate footprint.
Mitigating climate change. Creating value. Utilising resources efficiently.
In November 2016, the Federal Government enacted a series of ambitious objectives and measures by adopting the Climate Action Plan 2050. It describes the Charter for Wood 2.0 as a milestone on the path to achieving its climate change mitigation targets. One of the goals of this Charter is to develop measures that will strengthen the contribution made by sustainable wood use to achieving climate change mitigation targets. The Climate Action Plan also calls upon us to closely link efforts to increase the contribution to climate change mitigation provided by forests, sustainable forestry and intelligent use of wood with the requirements of resource and material efficiency.
Subsequent to the Climate Change Conference in Paris, the agricultural ministers of the Federal Government and the federal states (Länder) passed a resolution to implement a “Charter for Wood” based on their conviction that “… sustainable forest management, sustainable wood use and consistently using wood as a substitute for energy-intensive materials that have a harmful CO2 impact can make a significant contribution to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and to mitigating climate change overall, making these factors indispensable for reaching the goals set in the Paris Climate Agreement.” In this resolution, the agricultural ministers also emphasised the significance of sustainable forest management and wood use for strengthening the forestry and wood sector and thereby strengthening rural areas in particular.
In light of the major social and political challenges, the use of wood as the most important renewable resource is of particular significance. Sustainably produced wood from structurally rich forests has the potential to increasingly replace materials produced on the basis of fossil resources and to conserve energy from finite resources while simultaneously mitigating climate change.
The Charter for Wood 2.0 is available as pdf (open access) on the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture’s Website: bmel.de.