Red Listing the world’s timber species

This joint project between the Centre for Conservation Ecology and Environmental Change at Bournemouth University and GTC is assessing the current extinction risk of the world’s timber tree species.

Timber trees are considered significant for their value to manufacturing industries and trade, contributing some $468 billion to the global economy every year. However, these species are also of immense value to society, as they provide many of the crucial regulatory and provisioning services underpinning ecosystem stability, function and biodiversity.

The contribution of timber tree species to carbon storage, nutrient and water cycling, climate regulation, habitat provision and cultural services is critical to human wellbeing, yet remains largely overlooked by policy-makers.

Jennifer Mark is undertaking a PhD project that aims to address this knowledge gap by assessing the current extinction risk of the world’s timber tree species, and comprehensively exploring the likely impact on human wellbeing that would result from their disappearance.

As a first step, a Working List of Commercial Timber Tree Species has been produced.

For more information about this project, please contact:

Did you know?

During the Middle Ages, Yew wood was used to craft long bows and spears as the timber was both strong and elastic.  This led to the exhaustion of Yew forests once widespread across Britain.