The European Forest Institute (EFI) is an international scientific organisation established by several European states, and currently headquartered in Joensuu, Finland. It is a principal exponent behind an emerging science policy framework, Climate-Smart Forestry (CSF). This framework aspires to be a “targeted approach or strategy to increase the climate benefits from forests and the forest sector" by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and adapting forest management with the aim of building sustainable, productive, and resilient forests.

CSF Quantifications

From Yosefpour et al. (2018).
Graph of costs for an efficient carbon forestry in European countries with major tree species. Image source: Yousefpour et al. (2018) [graph]. Retrieved 28 March 2022, from https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-017-18778-w

Climate-Smart Forestry (CSF) research using some EFI data by Yousefpour et al. (2018) simulated conditions for European commercial forest growth along with an algorithmic simulation of CSF implementation in 68.3 million hectares of forest across 18 European countries. The researchers calculated the carbon sequestration potential and economic impacts of different tree species and national contexts in terms of wood and labour costs, as well as different forest management strategies and climate change scenarios. They argue that their model shows that climate mitigation efforts could be addressed most efficiently by CSF policies in northern, eastern and central European countries, with a focus on fast-growing conifer species.

This account of CSF takes a quantitative approach that considers but does not extensively interrogate socio-economic and political factors shaping forest management and measures of efficiency. What do quantitative approaches contribute to forest management practices aimed towards mitigating environmental change, and what are the socio-political implications of understanding forests through logics of carbon cost efficiency?

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