A better collective management is required to conciliate both outputs woodlots in biodiversity-bioenergy debates - INRAE - Institut national de recherche pour l’agriculture, l’alimentation et l’environnement Access content directly
Conference Poster Year : 2022

A better collective management is required to conciliate both outputs woodlots in biodiversity-bioenergy debates

Abstract

In the current intense debates about the increased use of wood for energy production, especially for heating, and the consequences for biodiversity, forests are often considered globally, without distinguishing between different types of situations. Large old forests, biodiversity hotspots, are thus considered in the same way as small woods in rural agricultural landscapes or recent growths resulting from agricultural abandonment. In this presentation, we will focus on small woods in rural agricultural landscapes. Very common in many rural landscapes in Europe, the wooded areas that make up small woods, hedges and tree lines, generally private, contribute to traditional agri-forestry systems. Because of their history, these areas are very varied in their composition and structure. They are subject to variable management and exploitation practices, often opportunistic, traditional, and with a strong socio-cultural dimension. In general, management is not optimised to achieve high silvicultural productivity, due to a lack of skills and resources. These wooded areas provide many services, particularly to neighbouring agriculture, and many of them are owned or managed by farmers. For example, they serve as refuges for crop auxiliaries, pest predators or pollinators, they regulate water flows and contribute to the well-being of inhabitants and visitors. Their biodiversity is often considered to be of lesser value than that of large forest areas, but they nevertheless contribute strongly to the connectivity of the landscape. They are home to a biodiversity that is considered to be commonplace but which may be of local interest. Because of their proximity to places of activity and ease of access, these wooded areas are also of great interest for timber harvesting. As was the case in the past, and as is still the case in certain regions of Europe, wood can easily be harvested by the neighbouring inhabitants for their direct use, particularly for heating. These uses could become much more important in the future. However, there is a risk that this will happen in an unplanned way and that the negative effects of overharvesting observed in the past will be repeated. We propose that these potentials be analysed in much greater detail in order to draw up management and exploitation plans that enhance the value of this local resource without harming the other services it provides. A commoning approach, stemming from recognising the community of people who hold an experiential knowledge of these forests and benefit from them in multiple ways, may support the emergence of collective ways of managing small woods in a just and sustainable manner.

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hal-04160356 , version 1 (12-07-2023)

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  • HAL Id : hal-04160356 , version 1

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Marc Deconchat, Floriane Clement, Émilie Andrieu, Florin Malafosse. A better collective management is required to conciliate both outputs woodlots in biodiversity-bioenergy debates. Biodiversity and Human Well-Being - Europe's Role in Shaping Our Future, Nov 2022, Francfort, Germany. ⟨hal-04160356⟩
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