Boreal forests and forestry play a crucial role in the global carbon cycle and climate change mitigation. The use of boreal forests and forest-based biomass (timber and energy biomass) responds to the increasing demand for renewable energy and wood-based materials. Using wood-based materials and energy biomass from sustainably managed forests has great potential for the long-term reduction of carbon emissions.
Sustainable climate change mitigation requires increases in carbon sequestration and carbon stocks in forest ecosystems (soil and tree biomass) and related technosystems (i.e. outside forests). A consideration of existing forest sinks is also included in the land use, land-use change and forestry (LULUCF) sector proposal of the European Commission under the EU´s Climate and Energy Framework, aimed at a total emissions reduction of 40% by 2030 for all sectors, as part of the Paris Climate Agreement. In the LULUCF proposal, the forest sink is allowed to compensate for the emissions of a member country only above a forest (management) reference level.