Policy questions that the indicator addresses: Forests are highly diverse ecosystems; covering 30% of the total land area on earth, they provide habitats for around two-thirds of all species. As well as being important for biodiversity, forests also serve a wide range of ecosystem functions essential to human life. Forests themselves are home to around 300 million people, and forest resources are used for building materials, food and medicines. Forests also protect other landscapes and habitats against nutrient loss, erosion and landslides through the binding action or roots. The loss of forests would have significant impacts on biodiversity and also humankind.
Indicator relationship to main Aichi Biodiversity Target: Target 7: By 2020 areas under agriculture, aquaculture and forestry are managed sustainably, ensuring conservation of biodiversity.
The forest certification indicator measures the area of responsibly managed forests, including natural or semi-natural forests that are used to produce timber and non-timber forest products, and forest plantations. An increase in the area FSC certified forest represents an increase in the area of commercial forest managed responsibly with respect to biodiversity conservation, such as establishment of set-aside areas, protection of rare, threatened and endangered species and their habitats, identification and preservation of High Conservation Values, as well as exclusion of forest conversion to plantations or non-forest land uses.