Mix Public and Private Forests (Le Foll)

Stephane Le Foll
Mix Public and Private Forests (Le Foll)

Bring public and private stakeholders a step closer for the management of forest? Even though it contradicts the recent French Act for the Future of Agriculture, this is a direction announced by Minister Stephane Le Foll, on January 12, 2016.

How to help overcome the fragmentation of the French forests and better organize their stakeholders? In the eyes of Stephane Le Foll, the French Minister of Agriculture and Forest, a response is to mix the public and private players to “aggregate the supply” of timber.

In the Senate, January 12, 2016, during the debate “The French forest in questions”, Stephane Le Foll said:

“Experiments will be conducted to achieve economic and forest interest groups which, unlike what was passed in the Act, will concern not only the public forest, but will be able to mix private forest and public forest issues, in particular in these forests where there is a need to mobilize timber for wood energy.”

However, the economic and environmental forest interests groups (GIEEF) defined by the Act for the Future of Agriculture, Food and Forest were thought for private forests. The Forest Ministry dwells on that point in a presentation published in 2015 (PDF available in French).

In any case, this approach is reminiscent of the strategy of French Forests Office (ONF). The Office, responsible for managing public forests, scored "the streamlining of national forest land” in its 2016-2020 contract. It reads:

“The exchange of parcels with private forest owners or local authorities […] will be encouraged.”

Same for community forests:

“The increase in the size of local forest management units will be sought.”

A redistribution of forest land or at least of the local forest management can therefore be expected.

C. C./Forestopic