Current issue: 54(2)
Annual variations in wood utilization makes it complicated to estimate the balance between wood utilization and wood production of forests. According to the article, the balance is unsustainable especially in the private forests in the southern part of Finland. The annual wood utilization of the country was 37.3 million m3 in 1913, and the annual wood production 35.2 million m3, according to a report of a committee that was appointed to find methods to prevent overcutting. The committee suggested legislation to forbid forest devastation. Also the growth of the forests could be increased, if the forests are well managed, the article argues. To prove this, the potential wood production capacity is estimated for the municipalities of Viipuri, Mikkeli and Kuopio, and compared to the present wood production and wood utilization of the area.
The PDF includes a German summary.
In the densely populated Central Europe, forestry has always had different functions than in Scandinavia or Canada. Today the increasing pressures on the environment and more numerous demands of the people have put emphasis on environmental management and the demands of recreation in forest management practiced in the area. This paper outlines the trends in the utilization of forests in Central Europe, and especially in the Federal Republic of Germany, due to these changing targets. The regulations concerning forestry in Baden-Würtenber, and the forest plan of the Bavarian state forests are used as an example to clarify the principals of forest management and planning.
The purpose of the present investigation was to study the extent of human interference with the forests of different epochs in the district of north Ostrobothnia in Northern Finland, and its effect on the condition of the forests.
The study revealed that the quantities of wood removed were not most detrimental to the condition of the forest; the regionally irregular loggings and the logging methods employed were the most harmful. The old forms of wood utilization, tar industry, shipbuilding, sawmill industry and timber exports, were characterized by timber selection. Public opinion considered it the only recognized cutting method long after the conditions had changed and silvicultural methods should have been used.
The spread and abandonment of selection cuttings are illustrated in the results of first National Forest Surveys in Finland. According to the first survey (1921–1924), nearly half of the loggings in the province of Oulu were based on selection, which spoiled and devastated 41% of the forests. In the 1930s one-fifth of the North Ostrobothnian forests were weakened by selection cuttings, in 1960s the figure was 6%. The article also summarises the extent of tar and pitch production, sawmill industry, shipbuilding and household wood consumption of wood in the area.
The PDF includes a summary in English
Tar was an important export article in Finland, then a part of Sweden, in the 18th century. For instance, in 1640 half of Finnish trade consisted of tar. In other countries, like Norway, Poland, Archangel in Russia, and North Sweden, burning of tar was minor compared to Finland. In Finland, tar was produced of young pine trees. Tar production concentrated in more remote locations of the country, where it would be too difficult and expensive to transport timber and wood products. The cheapest products, such as wood, boards and planks, were produced on a coastal zone at farthest 30 km from the coast. Tar was produced in the zone beyond the coastal district. The inland parts of Southern Finland were, however, hilly which made even the transport of tar difficult. Tar production ended by the middle of the 19th century when wooden ships were abandoned, and the value of forests and other wood products increased.
The PDF includes a summary in English.
The Jokioinen Estate was established in 1562 when king Erik XIV of Sweden granted a large area around Jokioinen in the southwest Finland to Klas Kristersson Horn. The estate had several landlords until it was acquired in 1872 by Jokkis Stock Company, and finally sold to the government in 1918. The forestry of the estate was influenced by complications concerning the ownership of the land. A part of the tenants of the estate had originally been independent and owned their farms, but some farms were so-called family-right-farms, which were inherited from father to son, but the farmer did not own the land. A third type of farmers were ordinary tenants, who were directly dependent on the landlord. Especially ambiguous was the family-right-farmers’ right to harvest timber from the forests. The Finnish government acquired the estate to solve the problems and gave the tenants right to buy their farms.
Until the 18th century most of the farmers in Jokioinen area practiced shifting cultivation. This method of farming influenced strongly the forests, and continued until the increased market price of timber made it unprofitable. The forests were also the source of fuel wood for both the farmers and the landlord. The estate had own saw-mill industry since the 18th century. In 1871 a trained forester was hired for the estate. When the government acquired the estate, it comprised 32,000 hectares of land. The state retained 7,000 hectares of the forests. They were managed by a trained forester and administrated under the Board of Agriculture.
The PDF includes a summary in English.
Metsähallitus (Forest Service) commissioned a study about condition of forests on the coast of Gulf of Finland in the Karelian Isthmus. The study was made because of a growing concern on overcutting of the private forests in the area. Dominant tree species in the area is Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.). In fresh mineral soil sites Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.) grows in mixed forest with pine or as pure stands. The forests are in average 50 to 70 years old. Younger or older stands are less frequent.
At the beginning of 18th century the local peasants sold plots for Russians, and a villa area was created along the coast. When Finland became independent, many of the properties changed owners. Timber harvesting of the forests increased and many small sawmills increased the demand of wood. Because of the cuttings, productivity of the forests decreases and danger for wind damage in the forests increases.
The author suggests that legislation created to prevent deforestation as well as counselling should be applied to improve forest management. In addition, a protective area should be formed in the Karelian Isthmus where forest preserving directives should be followed.
A summary in German is included in the PDF.