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Woodlands

Volume 456: debated on Thursday 1 February 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much coniferous woodland has been planted in the UK during the last 10 years. (117714)

The total areas of conifer planting (new planting and restocking) over the last 10 years for each country and the UK total are given in the following tables.

England

Hectares—thousand

Year ended 31 March

New planting

Restocking

Total

1997

0.5

2.7

3.2

1998

0.6

2.9

3.5

1999

0.7

2.7

3.5

2000

0.7

2.5

3.2

2001

0.7

2.7

3.4

2002

0.7

2.6

3.2

2003

0.5

2.4

3.0

2004

0.2

2.3

2.5

2005

0.2

1.9

2.1

2006

0.1

2.1

2.2

Scotland

Hectares—thousand

Year ended 31 March

New planting

Restocking

Total

1997

6.7

5.8

12.5

1998

5.9

5.3

11.3

1999

5.3

5.3

10.6

2000

5.2

6.5

11.7

2001

3.9

6.6

10.6

2002

3.0

6.6

9.6

2003

3.0

7.4

10.3

2004

2.6

7.6

10.2

2005

1.9

8.0

9.9

2006

1.0

7.1

8.1

Wales

Hectares—thousand

Year ended 31 March

New planting

Restocking

Total

1997

0.1

2.6

2.6

1998

0.1

2.3

2.5

1999

0.1

2.7

2.9

2000

0.2

2.4

2.6

2001

0.1

1.9

2.0

2002

0.0

1.6

1.6

2003

0.0

1.6

1.6

2004

0.0

1.4

1.4

2005

0.0

1.2

1.2

2006

0.0

1.6

1.6

Northern Ireland

Hectares—thousand

Year ended 31 March

New planting

Restocking

Total

1997

0.5

0.5

1.0

1998

0.4

0.6

1.0

1999

0.4

0.5

0.9

2000

0.4

0.5

0.9

2001

0.4

1.0

1.4

2002

0.2

0.7

0.9

2003

0.5

0.6

1.1

2004

0.1

0.9

1.0

2005

0.0

0.9

0.9

2006

0.0

0.8

0.8

United Kingdom

Hectares—thousand

Year ended 31 March

New planting

Restocking

Total

1997

7.7

11.6

19.3

1998

7.0

11.2

18.2

1999

6.6

11.3

17.9

2000

6.5

11.9

18.4

2001

5.1

12.2

17.4

2002

3.9

11.4

15.3

2003

4.0

12.0

16.0

2004

2.9

12.1

15.1

2005

2.1

12.0

14.1

2006

1.1

11.6

12.7

Note:

The figures in the tables are individually rounded, so the constituent items may not sum to the total given.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether the Government plan to increase the area of coniferous woodland planted. (117715)

The English Woodland Grant Scheme (EWGS) provides grants to establish new multi-purpose woodlands providing public benefits, including biodiversity and social benefits. The UK Forestry Standard, which underpins the EWGS, requires the choice of species to be suited to the site conditions taking into account silvicultural and environmental needs as well as management objectives.

In recent years around 5 to 10 per cent. of the total new woodland area planted has been with conifers. The extent and type of planting over the next five to 10 years will be influenced by the outcome of the refreshed England Forestry Strategy, the Comprehensive Spending Review 2007 and the budget that is agreed for the Rural Development Programme for England 2007-13.