The AFP is the first Italian association of lowland forest owners, created for the efficient, responsible and sustainable management of lowland forest resources
AFP aims to organize member properties through forest planning; facilitate Members in accessing funds, investments and contributions; increase the market outlook for forest products and services; develop the wood-wood supply chain of production-oriented forests; enhance the tourist-recreational use, teaching and the ecological function of the forest; promote and disseminate knowledge of lowland forests.
Since 2003 the forests managed by the Association have been managed according to a Forest Management Plan that regulates their environmental and forestry planning, in achieving the tourist-recreational purpose to which the properties of the Associates have been devoted.
A series of parks in Italy and around the world are linked to the initiative. For each park, you can decide what kind of trees and how many trees to plant. Just to give an example, in Tuscany (Rincine forest), 700 hornbeams, over 500 oaks and almost 1000 beeches have already been planted. Each park presents a different situation.
In addition to this initiative, the association also supports the design of forests in such a way as to maximise the production of Ecosystem Services through design that is attentive to synergies and trade-offs.
AFP benefited of public funds and resources from private investors. Among the private investors, AFP counts on funds through ecosystem services sale from around 56 private companies.
The Association has also benefited from the funds provided by the Forest Stewardship Council® (Smallholder Funds).
Evidence of success
Each Italian citizen emits on average 5000kg of Co2 per year. A tree captures about 700kg of Co2 over its lifetime, so you would need to plant 7 trees every year to balance your CO2 emissions.
Through this simple (obviously approximate) calculation, the initiative promotes the adoption of trees by citizens who can "finance" the absorption of their CO2 emissions through donations to plant trees.
The Association is taking care of very diversified forests: from urban forest to productive poplar plantation till seaside protective forests. Answering the needs of these diversified ecosystem is a never ending effort.
Potential for learning or transfer
The association was born from the coalition of private companies and public administrations to support multiple benefits from forests towards CO2 reduction and compensation. AFP have made possible for those benefits to circulate among multiple private and public beneficiaries by innovative approaches of FSC certification, carbon credits, and ecosystem services payments. Innovative communication campaigns and management approaches with the support of scientists have brought the AFP initiative to expand to other forestry resources outside Italy.
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