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How tree plantations can contribute to climate change mitigation?

As part of the LIFE C-FARMs project, the partner FederlegnoArredo (FLA) studies, with innovative methods, carbon stocked in tree plantations in specific agroforestry pilot sites in the Lombardy Region.

Here following our interview with FLA experts.

Who are you and what role do you play within your organization?

FederlegnoArredo is  the Italian Federation of Woodorking, Cork, Furniture and Furnishing industries. Our team for the C-Farms project is made up of the representatives of the Environment Office, the Project Development office for general project management and two colleagues with expertise in the forest-wood supply chain (and more specifically in poplar cultivation and panels production). We also have collaboration with Bluebiloba, a Spinoff of the University of Florence, in order to obtain an updated and georeferenced mapping of poplar crops in the Lombardy Region.

What activities do you carry out in your daily work?

The prevailing daily activity is related to the support our associated companies , in many different ways. Among our activities, there is the facilitation of  a constant and institutional dialogue at local, national and European levels, study and training activities related to environmental regulations and standards, constant cooperation with research and certification entities.

In parallel, we develop research and innovation projects, within the main framework programs co-founded by the European Commissionand related to the wood-furniture supply chain, with a focus on sustainability, circular economy, digitization, and education.

How is going the identification of different tree plantations proceeding in terms of carbon stock in the Lombardy Region?

The analysis conducted until now has made it possible to clearly identify the poplar (Populus spp.) areas of the Lombardy Region and their evolution over the last three years. We are awaiting the 2021 data – that will be soon available – to complete this review.

It is surprising how poplar plantations, while representing less than 1% of the national forest area, positively stimulate both the wood-furniture supply chain and contribute to the prevention of soil erosion, to the development of a positive fauna ecosystem and also to the improvement of water quality. 

Are there any critical issues that you have registered so far in this work? The gap of data about  wood harvesting use does not help to get a clear context of the introduction of wood into the paper and panel supply chains or of their use as biomass for energy production. The next phase of work will investigate this aspect in order to be able to quantify the carbon stock in the plantation and production.

Are the available data sufficient for the objectives of your action?

There are data from various sources (mainly private): private companies research and studies, data from FederlegnoArredo Study Center and specific data related to carbon stock. The current challenge is to select the most recent and most appropriate sources for our project purposes. 

Has the analysis of wood products retractable from crops begun? What are the first results in this regard?

Yes, it has begun: we have a secure database that helps us measure the carbon stock depending on wood species. It is a starting point that we will develop with an investigation that also includes the wood-processing phase.. In the meantime, we are directly talking  to  some poplar plantation managers to investigate agricultural practices and field tools in order to favor increasingly sustainable crops.

What are the next steps for this activity?

There are two open fronts: to conclude the mapping of the poplar areas of the Lombardy Region, using the f 2021 data and to investigate the carbon stock depending on  wood species and by production type.


The project supports the design and implementation of targeted payments for the application of Carbon Farming practices through the development of a regulatory framework for a carbon certification system in collaboration with relevant actors and institutions.



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