All of the separate projects to grow more trees in Iceland have now been united under a single government reforestation agenda.
Austurfrétt reports that all voting MPs voted in favour of a new reforestation bill aimed at centralising and supporting the project, which has been ongoing since the 1950s. The headquarters for this project will be based in Egilsstaðir.
RÚV reports that the aim of the project is to unite all the various and sundry local reforestation projects around the country under a single umbrella. This is not expected to result in an increase of the cost of reforestation, nor will any jobs be cut.
Forests comprise only about 0.3% of Iceland’s total land area. Historically, birch forest and woodland covered some 25% to 40% of Iceland at the time of the first human settlements some 1,140 years ago. Clearing trees for pastureland, building materials and fuel contributed to Iceland’s signature landscape today.
The new reforestation initiative will commence on July 1.