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European cities choose PEFC-certified Christmas trees – for a sustainable celebration

Dec 21 2018

Christmas is just around the corner. That means it is once again time for magnificent Christmas trees to light up city centres and spread seasonal splendour. Even better, several European cities have chosen PEFC-certified firs and spruces as their Christmas trees.

A traditional gift

London started the festiveLondon Christmas Tree season in sustainable style with the lighting of the iconic Trafalgar Square Christmas tree, the traditional annual gift from Norway to the UK.

Since 1947, Oslo has sent a tree to London every year as a token of gratitude and commemoration of Britain’s support during World War II, when the Norwegian government and royal family lived in exile in London during Norway’s occupation.

The 55-year-old spruce measures 22 metres and was harvested from a community-owned, PEFC-certified forest from the Ostmarka area just outside Oslo.

Solidarity in adversity

Italy’s capital is ready for Christmas with itsItaly tree new Palazzo del Quirinale and the Castelporziano Estate embellished by white fir trees grown in the PEFC-certified forests of Veneto and Trentino.

The Italian Chamber of Deputies spruced up with a Christmas tree from a PEFC-certified forest of the Asiago plateau, donated by the Municipality of Caltrano in Vicenza.

From the nearby Friuli Venezia Giulia Region comes the 23-metre spruce that was welcomed and decorated at St. Peter's Square in the Vatican.

Although all the areas donating these trees were heavily affected by the storms that damaged several Italian forests last October, the Christmas trees were in place on time.

By selecting PEFC-certified trees from forests hit by the storm, Italian and Vatican officials have sent a message of sharing and communicated the concept of sustainability and solidarity.

A long running choice for sustainability

An imposing Christmas tree adorns Brussel’s Brussels TreeGrand-Place, and just like in 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017, this year’s tree comes from a sustainably managed, PEFC-certified forest.

The 22-metre high fir originates from Baelen in the Walloon region of Belgium.

“This year, Brussels once again has the honour to receive this magnificent gift of Wallonia. We are proud to erect this tree in our beautiful main square,” said Brussel’s Mayor Philippe Close.

Seasonal splendour has also come to the Hessian federal state parliament in Germany.

Following what has already become a tradition, a PEFC-certified Nordmann fir brings Christmas spirit into the entrance hall of the parliament building. Again this year, the tree was a gift from the Hessian forest owner association.

By choosing a Christmas tree from a PEFC-certified forest, these cities and countless others demonstrate their commitment and support of sustainable forest management.

Through PEFC certification, companies and consumers alike are assured that these trees come from forests that are managed in line with the strictest environmental, social and economic requirements.

Further information

Previous PEFC Christmas Trees:

PEFC Certified

Forests area: 307 million ha
Forest owners: > 750,000
Companies (CoC): > 20,000

(as of September 2018)
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