Mountain Forests: Protection for Man und Nature

Forests are an essential part of any mountainous region. Without forests, the Alps would become desolate over time, making even the alpine uplands uninhabitable. We must not forget that nearly half of the Alpine region is covered by forests.
Only a healthy and stable mountain forest is able to provide a variety of important protection measures.

  • It regulates the water supply and provides us with drinkable water.
  • It prevents erosion, as well as boulder and snow avalanches.
  • It helps to regulate our climate and purify the air.
  • It absorbs carbon dioxide, thereby helping to reduce the greenhouse effect.
  • It helps to reduce noise levels.
  • It plays an essential role in the protection of species and their habitats and enriches landscapes.
  • The forest is also an important recreational area for people.

The population growth in recent times has made it necessary to search for new living space, resulting in an increased encroachment on nature. For that reason, nature is being increasingly exposed to new kinds of forest damage (storms, snow, disease etc.). The balance between man and nature can only be preserved if we take constant care of our forests.

Without human interference, woodlands – such as virgin forests – are naturally subject to large-scale deterioration over time. It is the job of various forestry services and their directors to take care of the forests by intervening in this process.

An integral part of silviculture is the various measures necessary for forests to fulfill their allotted functions (economy, protection, and ecology). That is the basis for what we call the “usefulness” of the forest:

  • The forest supplies us with wood, a raw material and source of energy which grows back, is environmentally sound and carbon-neutral..
  • It forms the basis of domestic lumbering and paper industries.
  • It ensures forest owners their incomes and
  • It provides jobs in structurally weak rural regions.
Modern-day silviculture keeps the principle of sustainability in mind, necessitating exact planning when it comes to how trees are used. The amount of trees cut down doesn’t exceed the amount of trees which can grow back, constantly securing a sufficient timber supply.
de | it | fr