Woodland Planting Schemes: Why Forests Are Vital To Life On Earth

Global deforestation has reached fever pitch all over the world, with billions of trees cut down every year. It’s now estimated that just under half of the trees in the world have been cleared in the past 12,000 years. These shocking figures have had a real-life impact for many people on Earth, as climate change ravages countries causing flooding and carnage on a global scale. Just one way that we can try and redress the balance is through woodland planting schemes. All over the world, these schemes are going on and they’re vital for the continuation of life as we know it on Earth. Here’s why.

Why We Need Woodland Planting Initiatives in The UK

A Brief History of Woodlands in Britain

The end of the last ice age, more than 10,000 years ago, shaped Britain’s woodland areas. Following this glacial period, trees and plant life occupied vast swathes of the land. Different species of plants arrived in waves during the 9th millennium BC, starting with birch and followed by hazel, oak and elm. It’s thought that almost all of Britain was covered in a thick forest, interspersed with grasslands created by grazing animals. During this period, early British natives would manage small woodland areas to generate timber for firewood and structures.

Between the 4th millennium BC and the 1st century AD, neolithic people had a significant impact on woodland areas. Many of these woodland areas were cleared to create space for agriculture and domesticated animals. During this period, British natives developed more sophisticated wood-working techniques and woodland areas were increasingly managed to generate resources.

The arrival of the Romans and the following centuries saw woodlands decrease further to around a quarter of the landmass to accommodate more construction and developing urbanisation. This downward trend of woodland management and deforestation has continued ever since. The Black Death in 1349 drastically reduced pressure on woodland areas as the population of Britain was slashed by The Plague but as the population regrew, and heating fuel rose in price, woodlands came under threat again.

By the start of the 20th century, only 5% of Britain was covered by woodland. The industrial revolution and advancement of the railway system completely savaged woodland areas. However, as the need for woodland areas has increased, this figure has slowly risen again. According to Forest Research, roughly 13% of the land area of the UK is now covered by woodlands. Although this is still not large enough, it shows that woodland planting schemes are beginning to take hold.

The Need For Woodland Planting

With this drastic decline of woodland areas in mind, we must do what we can to ensure that future generations have forests to enjoy. Forest planting schemes can help to redress the balance. Through a careful process of creating a woodland plan and then forest planting, woodland companies can help to create a greener nation. Proper site selection, followed by planting different species, helps to generate abundant woodlands which are beneficial to all of us.

Woodlands are vital for the survival of our rich biodiversity, our supply of natural resources as well as tackling levels of CO2 in the atmosphere. Read on to discover why they’re so important to our way of life and why forest planting has become such an essential process.

How Forest Planting Has an Impact on CO2 Levels

It’s common knowledge that the emission of CO2 is damaging to the environment. If too much CO2 is released into the environment, it traps additional heat creating the ‘greenhouse effect’. This then causes the ice caps to melt and sea-levels to rise, which in turn causes extensive flooding. Trees and plant life can reverse this process over time. Through the energy of the sun, trees and plants convert CO2 into oxygen. Over time, and in conjunction with other initiatives, this can help us to reverse the damage that climate change is wreaking on the environment.

By forest planting, we can increase the amount of COwhich is ‘captured’. A new native woodland area can capture as much as 400 tonnes of carbon per hectare in 50 years. Within 100 years, this figure rises to as much as 600 tonnes of CO2. With more than 24 million hectares of land in the UK, if an additional 10% of the land was covered by new native woodlands, that alone would have the potential to capture 1.4bn tonnes of CO2 in a century.

How Forest Planting Positively Impacts Biodiversity In Britain

As well as having a positive impact on the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere – which benefits us all – increased managed woodland areas are also critical for the native wildlife in the UK. Without thriving woodlands, many animals, plants and trees would become endangered and even extinct. The biodiversity in the UK is dependent on having thriving woodlands which are well-maintained and protected.

The type of woodland has an impact on the type of wildlife found in the habitat. Woodland management companies can create the richest environment possible to ensure that as many species of animals can survive. If the amount of sunlight reaching a forest floor is reduced too much, this will have an impact on the diversity of the habitat. Conversely, if trees are thinned too much, then this will also reduce the diversity of the habitat.

Professional woodland plans can ensure that the right balance is struck as much as possible. Woodland management companies, like Woodland Creation Scotland, will always ensure that endangered species are protected during the planning and establishing stages. By erecting enough woodland areas, we may even be able to bring some creatures back from the brink of extinction.

Successful Forest Planting Projects In the UK

Here in the UK and globally there are countless stories of successful forest planting projects. At Woodland Creation Scotland, we are currently reforesting a 40-hectare property in the Scottish borders. This project will produce a resource of timber in the future but will also create a habitat for natural wildlife in the area.

Across the rest of the UK, a project of gargantuan proportions is in place to help battle climate change. The campaign aims to plant 20 million trees in the next decade. Led by The National Trust, this scheme is designed to achieve ‘net zero’ CO2 emissions by 2030.

All over Britain and the rest of the world, initiatives like ours are taking place to ensure there is woodland for future generations to enjoy and to protect us all from the dangers of climate change.

Woodland Creation Scotland: Forest Planting Specialists In Scotland

Woodland Creation Scotland are specialists in forest planting and woodland management. Through our forest planting services, we can help to bring down CO2 levels by working with landowners and purchasers to create a woodland area on their land. We understand the important role that the creation of woodlands has on the environment. As a specialist forest planting service, we offer a comprehensive forestry management provision from start to finish.

From constructing a woodland plan after an initial assessment to planting trees and then managing the ongoing maintenance, we provide our clients with an end-to-end service. Ensuring that we cherish our woodlands and keep them healthy for future generations is of the utmost importance to us and guides everything we do.

We’re one of the leading forestry management companies in Scotland. Based in Perth, we’re ideally located to help you with forest planting on your land. If you have been considering planting a woodland in Scotland and require a woodland plan, look no further! We’d be happy to discuss how we can help nurture a woodland area with you. Check out some of our current projects to see what we’re already working on.

To find out more about us, please feel free to contact us today. You can find us at Durn, Isla Road, Perth PH2 7HG. Alternatively, call us on 01738 442 903 or email us at info@woodlandcreationscotland.co.uk.

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