FSC unveils landmark publication: Forest Futures

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A look into the state of forests and the transformative potential of forest stewardship

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) proudly announces the release of its flagship publication, Forest Futures. This pivotal work leverages current scientific research to assess the state of the world’s forests and explore their potential for profound change. It underscores the vital role of forest stewardship in fostering resilient and healthy ecosystems.

Forest Futures provides an in-depth analysis of today’s forests, addressing critical issues such as biodiversity loss, the ability of forests to support livelihoods, and the urgent need to tackle the climate crisis. It sheds light on the shared understanding of forest stewardship and highlights how this approach has been undervalued by many decision-makers as a viable solution to these global challenges.

Envisioning the forests of the future

To explore three potential trajectories for the world's forests by 2050, FSC collaborated with Reos Partners, renowned for their expertise in systems-change studies and transformative scenarios mapping. Input from over 200 stakeholders helped identify four key drivers influencing forest management, conservation, and sustainable use. Leveraging these drivers, the three distinct trajectories were outlined and mapped out. These drivers are (1) Forests & Planet, (2) People, (3) Economy & Markets, and (4) Governance. These trajectories, developed through an innovative modelling exercise, demonstrate the profound impact that different levels of commitment to forest stewardship can have on our planet.

"Forests are at the heart of our environmental and socio-economic future," said Kim Carstensen, Director General of FSC. "Our flagship publication demonstrates that by embracing forest stewardship, we can unlock their potential for positive change. This is not just about preserving forests, but about enhancing their role in addressing global challenges such as climate change, biodiversity loss, and social inequity".

FSC continues to lead the way toward a future where forests can thrive, advocating for responsible forest management practices that meet societal needs while preserving ecological integrity. Forest Futures calls for transformative change, offering a tangible strategy for achieving environmental targets. It urges governments, businesses, NGOs, and other key actors to join in creating a future where forests flourish, communities thrive, and our planet achieves harmony.

Read the full publication here.