Satellite surveillance curbs forestry violations in Finland

According to the state-funded Center, satellite monitoring of Finnish forests is increasingly helping to uncover illegal forest practices.

Surveillance detected nearly 180 forest crimes in 2021, compared to nearly 300 crimes in the previous year.

The state-funded Forest Center, which promotes forestry and related activities, began using satellite imagery in 2019 to ensure that the forest sector complies with the .

With the help of satellite images, the group detects logging in which timber buyers or forest owners have failed to report as required by the Forest Act.

The law seeks to promote "economically, ecologically and socially sustainable management and use of forests to ensure that forests produce good returns in a sustainable way and that their biodiversity is preserved."

According to the organization, research focuses in particular on critical areas, such as forests along watercourses, which often have sensitive habitats. Last year, 11 logging sites were found in such areas.

Of the 180 suspected violations detected last year, 66 led to a investigation. About 80 percent of the suspected crimes were related to the fact that foresters did not report the logging to the authorities before it began.

The number of infringements detected during the first two years of satellite surveillance increased, but last year the trend turned downwards, according to the center.

Source: The Nordic Page


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