We treat the forest responsibly

Responsible forestry and forest management

By acting responsibly, we are building a more sustainable future. We care for biodiversity, take climate and water impacts into account in our forests, restore and protect forest areas and provide conditions for research and recreation. We also act responsibly in the financial, services and product markets.

Biodiversity and climate programme

Finsilva’s biodiversity and climate programme presents the most important measures to increase biodiversity and address the climate change challenge.

The aim of Finsilva’s biodiversity programme is to safeguard and increase the biodiversity of forests. This is achieved by developing new practices to improve biodiversity, increasing active nature management, protecting valuable areas, promoting research and stakeholder cooperation and by monitoring and analysing the biodiversity impacts of our measures. Our goals are nature positive forestry by 2030 and continuous improvement.

With its programme, Finsilva contributes to the achievement of Finland’s climate goals and carbon neutrality by 2035: we increase carbon sinks and pools and facilitate the production of clean energy.


Together with our partners, we improve and develop the ecological diversity of Finnish forests. In other words, we operate in our forests, including those used for commercial purposes, in a way that takes nature into account. We use the Metsä Group Plus forest management model, which is based on the principles of regenerative forestry. In planning and implementing our actions, we comply with the requirements of legislation and certification, as well as the guidelines of our own climate and biodiversity programme.

In the nature management of commercial forests, we focus on preserving habitats that are particularly important for biodiversity. This means, for example, protecting valuable habitats, leaving retention tree groups and hunting thickets in felling, making artificial coppices to increase the number of species, and saving dead and decaying trees.

Finsilva takes care of water protection through sufficient protection zones and taking water protection measures in connection with its operations.

Forest certification

Finsilva’s forests have been certified in accordance with both the PEFC and the FSC forest certification system.

The forest certification requirements, in particular those of FSC, create a clear requirement level for Finsilva’s nature management. In sustainable forest management, natural values and wood production are in balance – the biodiversity of forest nature and the cultural and recreational values of forests are preserved while practising productive, responsible and socially sustainable forestry. Forest certification promotes the market access of wood and wood products.

The Metsä Group Plus forest management model measures come on top of the actions required by the certifications, so for example more trees and artificial coppices are left per hectare than required by the certificates.

FSC is an abbreviation of the words Forest Stewardship Council. FSC is the world’s most trusted responsibility certificate for forestry products. The FSC certificate guarantees that forests are utilised with respect for the environment and human rights. For more information, please visit fsc.org.

PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) is an international forest certification system that promotes ecologically, socially and economically sustainable forestry. For more information, please visit pefc.fi/english.



Climate and climate change

We act for the climate through the means of climate smart forestry by increasing tree growth and curbing emissions into the soil. We promote and facilitate the use of wind power, solar power and renewable wood raw material for the replacement of fossil raw materials. The implementation of our climate actions and the achievement of our goals is monitored annually.

From the viewpoint of forestry, the most important threat posed by climate change to forest growth is the increasing risk of forest damage. Adaptation to climate change and ensuring the growth capacity of forests through timely forest management is a good way of decreasing the risks of climate change.

The health, viability and damage resistance of forests is crucial to Finsilva. Choosing the right tree species for the right habitat is a major means of adaptation. It is also essential to identify root rot areas already before logging and consider this information in the selection of the renewal method and the tree species.

Based on Finsilva’s forest management strategy and forest treatment forecasts, the carbon sinks and pools of both the tree stand and forest soil are expected to increase in the next 50 years.

According to the calculations of Natural Resources Institute Finland, the carbon storage of Finsilva’s tree stand is about 17 Tg CO2eq, i.e. about 131 t CO2eq. ha-1. In mineral soil areas the carbon storage of forest soil is about 20 Tg CO2eq. According to Natural Resources Institute Finland, the average carbon storage of peatland is about eight times higher than that of mineral soil. This means that the carbon storage of Finsilva’s peatlands is about 40 Tg CO2eq.

Conservation and the METSO and Helmi programmes

5.7% of Finsilva’s forests, i.e. a total of 7,500 hectares are outside of the scope of forest treatment. 4.6% of the forest area is in the scope of special forest treatment methods.

5,7 %

of our forests are not used for commercial forestry

4,6 %

of the forest area is in the scope of special forest treatment methods


private conservation areas in total

We take a very positive stance on the voluntary METSO and Helmi programmes and actively look for sites that are suitable for them. Finsilva has established 35 private nature conservation areas under the METSO or Helmi programmes. In addition, Finsilva has 31 private conservation areas that were established in 1945–2010.

METSO and Helmi programmes are voluntary tools that allow private landowners to set up nature reserves and receive compensation for the area they protect.

Karttakuva, jossa näkyy Finsilvan Metso- ja Helmi-kohteiden sijainnit. Kohteita on eniten Etelä- ja Keski-Suomessa.
A total of 35 METSO and HELMI nature preservation sites are located on our lands.

Controlled burning

Finsilva performs controlled burning on 3% of burnable regeneration areas each year and also maps and burns areas suitable for controlled burning for the purpose of nature management.

The controlled burnings are mainly performed through burning retention tree groups, producing burnt wood. The aim is to produce at least 20 fire-damaged stems with diameters of over 20 cm on each hectare of the burnt area. The stems can also be already dead. Spatial continuity is important for species specialised in burnt wood.

Participation in research and development operations

We actively promote versatile forest-related research and development operations. We cooperate with educational and research institutions e.g. by offering our forests for use as sample plots even in long-term studies. Through research and development work, we increase information and knowledge on sustainable forestry and create conditions for our own success.

For example, we have participated in the following research and development projects:

Natural targeted timber cuts, 2022–2024
Responsible party: University of Helsinki

Forest management regimes of mixed forest (SEKAVA), 2021–2023
Responsible party: Natural Resources Institute Finland

Forest-Human-Machine Interplay – Building Resilience, Redefining Value Networks and Enabling Meaningful Experiences (UNITE), 2020–2023
Responsible party: University of Eastern Finland

Benefits of artificial high stumps for pollinators and diversity, 2021–2022
Responsible party: University of Helsinki

B4est, 2020–2022
Responsible party: Natural Resources Institute Finland

Recreational and leisure use of forests

We promote recreational use of forests through diverse forest management, by maintaining the forest road network and by providing opportunities for hiking, mountain sports, berry picking, hunting and other diverse uses of forests, shores and water bodies. Active trails are maintained during forest management. We also make contracts for regional and national hiking, skiing and snowmobile trails.

Want to know more?

For questions related to sustainability, please contact our CEO Juha Hakkarainen (juha.hakkarainen[a]finsilva.fi) or our Sustainability Manager Silja Pitkänen-Arte (silja.pitkanen-arte[a]metsagroup.com).