The Forestry Commission has recently released a NFI (National Forest Inventory) summary report of the 25-year forecast of softwood availability for the UK.
The Forecasts, covering the period 2017-2041, are calculated by taking the ‘current’ woodland structure and applying the Forestry Commission’s growth and yield models to grow the woodland into the future. By applying a range of management scenarios (describing harvesting and restocking regimes) The Forestry Commission has forecasted the future timber availability and the corresponding growing stock in the woodland.
According to the report, softwood availability will change over the period in exam; it is expected to increase from 18.1 million m3 per annum in 2017–21 to 19.3 million m3 per annum in 2027–31 before reducing to 16.8 million m3 per annum in 2037–41.
In terms of volume, the forecast of softwood availability for the UK forest estate is an average of 18.3 million m3 of softwood timber per annum over the 25-year period. The forecast for England is an average of 4.1 million m3 per annum; for Scotland 11.9 million m3 ; for Wales 1.8 million m3 ; and for Northern Ireland 0.5 million m3 .
These figures assume that FC/NRW/FS estate and Private sector estate profiles are different. Over the forecast period, the Forestry Commission (FC), Natural Resources Wales (NRW) and Forest Service (FS) [FC/NRW/FS] estate will show an overall reduction in forecast availability with an average of 5.5 million m3 per annum for the next 25 years, if existing forest management plans are followed and production is not constrained.
On the contrary, over the next 25 years, the Private sector estate will experience an overall increase. The upturn will run for the first half of the forecast period and will be followed by a decline in the second half of the period, with annual availability in the last period (2037–41) returning to a level similar to the 2017–21 period. The potential availability of softwood timber from the Private sector estate for the UK is expected to reach an average of 12.2 million m3 per annum.
For the complete report click here.
[News URL: http://www.cti-timber.org/content/forestry-commission-publishes-25-year-softwood-availability-forecast-uk]