Ever smaller area notified for final felling
A continuous decrease in notified area for final felling in December according to monthly statistics from the Swedish Forest Agency. The total area notified decreased by 27 per cent compared to the same month 2018. Regions South of Sweden and South of Northern Sweden showed the largest decrease in notifications
The total area notified for final felling was 16 945 hectares in December, which is the lowest note for seven years for December and clearly lower than the average 20 333 hectares for the period 2007 – 2019.
In 2019 at total of 273 638 hectares have been notified for final felling. It is 7 per cent lower than in 2018.
The area notified for final felling decreased in all regions:
- In region South of Sweden, the decrease was a high 37 per cent down to 40342 hectares, which is the lowest note in the region for December in seven years.
- In region South of Northern Sweden, the notified area decreased by 35 per cent to 3 567 hectares compared to the same month 2018. The note is below the average level of 5 853 hectares for December during the period 2007-2019, and it is the lowest note for November since 2007.
- In region Northern Sweden the notified area decreased by 26 per cent to 3 359 hectares.
- In region Central Sweden the notified area decreased by 11 per cent to 5 677 hectares.
Reduced timber prices and large volumes of timber in the whole chain from forest to industry could be some of the reason for the decrease in notified area for final felling.
A decrease in 19 out of 21 counties
County Kronoberg had the largest decrease in notified area for final felling by 65 per cent to 288 hectares compared to 2018, which is the lowest note for December since 2007. In county Halland the decrease was 55 per cent (157 hectares) – the lowest note for the month since 2008. In county Gävleborg the notified area decreased by 49 per cent (1 021 hectares) compared to December 2018, and in county Västra Götaland the decrease was 45 per cent. It is the lowest note for December for both counties since 2012.
Other counties with large decreases in notified area for final felling in December in comparison with the same month 2018 are Skåne County (39 per cent), Kalmar County (36 per cent), Västernorrland County (32 per cent), Jönköping County (31 per cent), Västerbotten and Örebro Counties (both 30 per cent) and Dalarna County (29 per cent).
The area notified for final felling in counties Jämtland and Gävleborg is still impacted by the large areas notified after the extensive forest fires in the summer of 2018.
Only two counties, Gotland and Södermanland, show an increase in notified area in December compared to the same month 2018. The increase in Gotland County was 72 per cent to 186 hectares, which is the highest note since 2007 and significantly higher than the average (81 hectares) for the month. Södermanland County also shows the highest note of area notified for December since 2007 (684 hectares). The increase of the area notified for final felling in Södermanland County thus continues also in December. The reason is most likely the problems of forest damages caused by bark beetle.
Statistics refer to total notifications and applications for permission in productive forest land for final felling. A notification or application for final felling need not mean the forest has been felled.
The survey is part of Official Statistics of Sweden.
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