It is the busiest time of the year, when forests are being regenerated by planting or seeding. This year, Stora Enso will plant a total of more than 48 million tree seedlings in Finland, Sweden, Russia and Estonia. In northern forests, the planting season is typically about 150 days long, which means that, during this year’s planting season, about 320 000 seedlings are planted every day.
Using cultivated plants and seeds, forests can grow as much as 20% faster than they would naturally. This means added value for forest owners and Stora Enso, as well as for nature and the climate. In 2020, Stora Enso invested 68 million euros in forest growth.
In 2021, Stora Enso and Tornator are, together, planting 14 million seedlings in Finland. In Sweden, where Stora Enso owns approximately 1.4 million hectares of forest and where seedlings are delivered from Stora Enso’s own nurseries, the company is planting 33 million seedlings. Russia follows, with approximately 850 000 plants in Carelia and 250 000 in Novgorod. In Estonia, Stora Enso is planting around 31 000 seedlings in private forests.
Healthy and growing forests mitigate climate change impacts, and with sustainable forest management, including planting, the role of forests in this can be enhanced further. Only growing forests absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and store carbon throughout their lifetime. Carbon stays in the fibers when the tree is used in wood-based products, such as building elements, books and packaging – and it stays there even when these products are recycled.
“Planting and following forestry work are the most important climate actions that can be carried out in the forest. The more trees grow, the more they absorb carbon dioxide,” says Kari Kuusniemi, Forest Service Manager at Wood Supply Finland.
“Properly timed and implemented forest management measures increase the growth and vitality of the forest. Therefore we always strive to keep forests healthy while promoting biodiversity and other aspects of sustainable forestry. We want to ensure that our forests are fit for the future,” says Jari Suominen, Executive Vice President, Forest Division.