Illegal logging in the Baltic states

In Europe, production of pulp, the key ingredient for the manufacture of tissue, relies to a significant extent on timber from Russia and the Baltic states. Sweden and Finland, major tissue and paper producing countries, for instance, are major buyers of pulp from these countries.

In Russia and the Baltic states, unlawful harvesting of timber and related criminal activities are causing losses to biodiversity, as well as to economy and society. The scale of illegal logging is dramatic—almost a third of timber logged in the north-west of Russia is considered illegal.

Big losses

Russia loses approximately 1 billion US dollars per year to illegal logging and trade, which in turn restricts money available for good harvesting practices, local communities and development.

Bad practices put wildlife in Russia's Boreal forests—such as the capercaillie, white-backed woodpecker, Siberian tiger and Far Eastern leopard—at high risk.

The problem of illegal logging in the new EU member states is still largely unrecognized, and yet uncontrolled and illegal harvesting damages both nature and local communities.

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