Public and Commercial Services Union
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Forestry sell-off would change social and environmental landscape

Plans by the government to privatise up to half of Forestry Commission land would deny future generations of our woodlands and forests, PCS says.

The union also fears that hundreds of jobs would be at risk as a result of the sell-off and vulnerable rural communities would lose out.

In 2009 a detailed study of the long term role of the public forest estate was carried out by the Forestry Commission. It reported that public forests were good value for money providing multiple social and environmental benefits and concluded that public ownership was essential in supporting the estate.

The union has pledged to campaign alongside other unions, environmental groups and communities to secure the future of our forests for our children and grandchildren in the decades to come.

PCS Forestry Commission group officer Allan Mackenzie said “Our public forests contain some of the nation’s most important natural treasures and any thought of selling these to the highest bidder would go against all the progress being made to secure our natural environment now and into the future.”

PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka added: “Public forests are a national asset enjoyed by all of us and selling them off to make room for golf courses or holiday parks would be a huge loss to the nation.

“Forests also play a major role in protecting the environment and this too would be under threat if they were sold off to private hands to chop down for profit.”

 

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