Libya - Forestry



The only important forest areas in Libya are shrubby juniper growths in the Jabal Akhdar areas of Cyrenaica. A few conifers are found in more isolated districts. Tripolitania has some forest remnants in inaccessible regions. Encroaching sand dunes in the north create a need for afforestation, and many acacia, Aleppo pine, carob, cypress, eucalyptus, olive, and palm trees have been planted. Some 358,000 hectares (884,600 acres) of Libyan territory are classified as "forest," but almost all of this land could more properly be called maquis. Dune fixation, both for reforestation and to preserve agricultural land, has been an important part of the forestry program.

Up to 1976, the government had planted 213 million seedlings, mostly in western Libya. By 1981, 165,405 hectares (408,722 acres) of forest and 63,443 hectares (156,770 acres) of windbreak had been planted. During the 1980s, reforestation was proceeding at the rate of 32,000 hectares (79,000 acres) per year, but that rate slowed to 5,000 ha (12,300 acres) during the 1990s. In 2000, roundwood removals were estimated at 652,000 cu m (23 million cu ft), of which 536,000 cu m (18.9 million cu ft) were used for fuel.

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