Shortage of UK foresters prompts government to offer free courses

By Helena Horton
The Guardian
February 7, 2023
Category: Forestry
Region: International

UK – A shortage of foresters has prompted the government to launch free courses as it rushes to meet targets for tree planting. There will be training in chainsaw maintenance, coppicing, woodland management, hedge laying and the sale and marketing of timber. The Institute of Chartered Foresters said in November 2021 that the industry faced a shortfall of 10,000 trained workers. Without those positions being filled, the government will not be able to meet its climate goals of increasing woodland cover. The government has promised to increase England’s woodland cover from 14.5% to 16.5% by 2050, and tree-planting across the UK to 30,000 hectares a year by the end of parliament. The government hopes the courses will prompt people to consider a career in forestry, so the sector can grow and woodland goals can be met.

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