Increase UK Woodland Planting: Joint Industry Statement

Published 6th Oct 2017

Increase UK woodland planting

"Ambitious uplift in the area of woodland cover in the UK"

A concerted effort from the major rural organisations representing UK woodland planting has resulted in the launch of a joint statement presented to the Conservative Party.  Delivered to the Forestry Minister Dr Thérèse Coffey at the Conservative Party Conference in early October 2017, the statement from the group - Confor, The Woodland Trust and CLA (Country Land & Business Association) - said increased tree planting targets should be introduced.

6 Key Points to increase woodland planting

The statement lists six key points from the Statement are:

  • The UK would benefit from more forests and woods. Tree planting targets should be clearly linked to the needs of the UK economy, helping to tackle climate change, enhancing biodiversity and providing places for recreation.
  • Support for woodland creation and tree planting should be improved after Brexit. A new countryside ‘contract’ between farmers, landowners and society should include measures to increase woodland cover, and see more woodland managed sustainably.
  • Tree planting needs to be environmentally and economically sustainable. Tree planting should take into account future needs of people, business and wildlife, including the need to mitigate flood risk and to protect and enhance existing habitats.
  • Owners of existing woodland should be rewarded for the public benefits it delivers. In any future policy, owners who manage their woodland to the UK Forestry Standard should be rewarded for delivering a wide range of public benefits.
  • Forestry in the UK needs to be more visible, better understood and encouraged: Forestry is a £2 billion business, supports 80,000 jobs – and has huge growth potential.
  • Britain needs to use more timber in construction

Plant more trees

Stuart Goodall, Chief Executive of Confor, said: “I am very pleased to be able to launch this statement with these prestigious organisations. There is a lot of common ground here in terms of supporting and working with rural communities to plant more trees and to help create economically strong and environmentally robust rural areas.”

"Supporting and working with rural communities to plant more trees."

Confor is the UK’s leading membership organisation for sustainable forestry and wood-using businesses.  Promoting forestry and wood, the organisation represents over 1600 businesses.


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