Stora Enso to strengthen biodiversity for own forests in Sweden

Stora Enso has launched a biodiversity programme and related targets for its land holdings in Sweden, which covers the company’s forest land in Sweden, and has five focus areas, each with specific actions and measurable targets for 2030.

According to the press release by Stora Enso, the company now owns 1.4 million hectares of land in Sweden. Safeguarding biodiversity has been an integral part of Stora Enso’s forest management for decades, and the new programme aims to strengthen this work further.

“We know that the humankind needs to take strong action to safeguard biodiversity, and we know that Stora Enso is part of the solution,” says Ida Bränngård, head of forest management at Stora Enso Skog.

Combined with the ongoing biodiversity work, the new biodiversity programme with more than 30 actions will lead to increased nature values and strengthened biodiversity across Stora Enso’s land holdings in Sweden. Some examples of activities from the programme’s focus areas and main targets for 2030:

Deadwood: Over 40% of red-listed forest species depend on deadwood. Stora Enso aims to increase the amount of dead wood on its land holdings by another 40%.

Broadleaved trees: Broadleaved trees provide habitats for many species. Stora Enso reported that it will double the number of broadleaved trees in young forests and plant 700,000 birch trees annually.

Water: Watercourses and wetlands are often rich in biodiversity since many species depend on water for different life stages. Stora Enso will identify four major water landscapes for restoration and remove migration barriers in all identified valuable watercourses.

Species and habitats: The new biodiversity programme focuses on protecting four umbrella species, which in turn benefit hundreds of other red-listed species.

Active biodiversity management: Actions in this focus area include increasing annual prescribed burning by 20% on average in the protection areas over a five-year period.

Stora Enso uses selected areas of its Swedish forests to test and develop biodiversity management methods and capabilities. This work is reportedly done in close collaboration with universities, environmental organisations, NGOs and authorities to share knowledge and foster joint innovation and development.

“Forest biodiversity is largely about creating a diverse forest landscape. Different structures, different ages and different forest types are important parameters for biodiversity. Stora Enso’s biodiversity programme aims to create a mosaic in the landscape, increase variation and promote nature values throughout the forest land,” concluded Bränngård.