More than 40% of the Alpine area is covered by forests. This figure is growing due to the abandonment of some cultivated areas and due to the rise in temperature. Forests are carbon sinks. They not only supply wood as a construction material but are also a source of renewable energy. They are a distinguishing element of the Alpine landscape and offer natural protection against avalanches, floods and other disasters. Forests also have an important recreational function. Thus, when managed sustainably, they carry out many important functions: soil conservation, protection against natural disasters, renewable sources of raw materials, energy sources, employment opportunities, mitigation of climate change, ecosystem conservation and protection of Alpine landscapes (Article 2, 2h of the Framework Convention).
The topic of future-oriented farming and forestry (nature protection, socio-economic and cultural aspects) is addressed in one of the subgroups of the EUSALP Action Group 6.