Finnish Forest Research Institute  Metla

Press release 14.06.2006

Results of 10th Finnish National Forest Inventory: Annual increment of growing stock 97 million cubic metres

Increase in increment greatest in young Scots pine stands

According to latest surveys carried out by the Finnish Forest Research Institute (Metla), the growing stock of Finnish forests amount s to 2,177 million cubic metres. The annual increment rate of the stock is 12% higher than that measured in the previous inventor y. The data are based on measurements over the first two years (2004 – 2005) of the 10th National Forest Inventory (NFI10). The inventory results are published in the latest Metsätieteen aikakauskirja.

Timber reserves 2.18 billion cubic metres
The Inventory results indicate a total growing stock volume of 2.18 billion cubic metres. Half of the stock is Scots pine, less than one third Norway spruce, 12% common white birch, 4% silver birch, and the remainder other deciduous and coniferous stock.

Compared to the previous inventory (NFI9, 1996-2003), timber resources of our forests have grown by 4% or 85 million cubic metres. The increase has consisted of Scots pine and deciduous stock. The increase in Scots pine and deciduous stocks is explained by the fact that predominantly Scots pine and deciduous forests are mostly young stands. In young stands, growth is rapid, but logging potential smaller. Norway spruce volumes on forest and scrubland have decreased by 40 million cubic metres, or approx. 6%. The percentage of fully grown and mature forests is high in Norway spruce stands, which permits relatively large-scale regeneration fellings of Norway spruce.

Annual increment of growing stock 97 million cubic metres
As part of the inventories, diameter increment of sample trees is measured, and with conifers also the height increment. The average increment over five years prior to the inventory is 97.1 million cubic metres. The increment is 12% greater than increment of stock measured in NFI9. Of the stock increment, 47.4 million cubic metres (49%) is Scots pine, 27.7 million cubic metres Norway spruce (29%) and 22.0 million cubic metres (23%) broad-leaved trees. The increase in increment has been in Scots pine and deciduous stocks, with no significant change in increment of Norway spruce. The notable increase in Scots pine and deciduous stocks is explained by the fact that Scots pine and broad-leaved forests are mostly young stands, at the stage of rapid growth. In the case of Scots pine, the result is also explained by the fact that during VM19, the level of Scots pine increment in a large part of the country was clearly lower than the long-term average increment level.

The annual stock drain (through logging and natural causes) over the last five years has been 71% of average increment for the period. Increment of Scots pine and broad-leaved stock has clearly been greater than the drain, while Norway spruce increment has been slightly lower than the drain.

NFI10 under new system
Finnish forest reserves and the state of forests have been monitored through Forest Inventories since the 1920s. The sampling system has now been changed, so that surveys are conducted annually throughout the country, unlike the previous inventory, which progressed region by region. The new sampling system will speed up monitoring of forests, and information on the whole country may be produced based on measurements taken in the same years.

Metla is responsible for carrying out National Forest Inventories, but from 2005, Forestry Centres have also participated in the collection of data. The field surveys for NFI10 were begun in 2004, and the last ones will be completed by the end of 2008. The field surveys are continuing this summer in various parts of Finland, carried out by 22 field groups. The media are welcome to acquaint themselves with the activities of the field groups.

Publication: Kari T. Korhonen, Juha Heikkinen, Helena Henttonen, Antti Ihalainen, Juho Pitkänen & Tarja Tuomainen. 2006. Suomen metsävarat 2004–2005. Metsätieteen aikakauskirja 1B/2006. (In Finnish)

Appendix 1: Data on Finnish forest resources

Additional information:

Press releases in English are available at:   Metlan RSS-newsfeed
Finnish Forest Research Institute - Metla/Communications
Unioninkatu 40 A, FI-00170 HELSINKI, FINLAND. Phone +358 10 211 2000    E-mail: info @