By Sands, R. (Eds.)

This e-book with 11 chapters explores forestry in a world context. The e-book includes dialogue at the following issues: historical past of human interplay with forests; forests of the area; environmental price of forests; wooden and paper items; bioenergy, cutting edge biomaterials, non-wood woodland items; wooded area dynamics within the tropics; sustainable wooded area administration; forestry and weather switch; plantations for wooden construction with environmental care; social forestry; and overseas wooded area coverage. on hand In Print

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There were still relatively extensive tracts of forest in the betterwatered and/or less accessible country at the end of the classical period. The Mediterranean remained a centre of civilization for many centuries after the fall of the Roman Empire. The centre of activity was first in the east around Constantinople, but later moved to the west around the maritime republics of Pisa, Genoa and Venice, and later Spain and Portugal. The rise of these maritime trading powers and the consequent increase in population and living standards re-imposed the need for clearing forest for agriculture and timber.

This in itself was not necessarily an indication of deforestation. However, it coincided with the time when the population of Rome began to increase, in turn accompanied by agricultural expansion. Records indicate that floods increased after that date (Hughes, 1994). Deforestation caused significant erosion in Italy. Silt from deforestation of the Tiber River catchment landlocked Rome’s coastal port. The Po River catchment was originally covered in forests but the lowlands were cleared for agriculture, followed by the foothills and then some of the higher country.

Timber species were fir, pine, oak, elm, chestnut, poplar and cypress. The architects of the day had good knowledge of their wood properties and uses in construction. Building activity was assisted by the relatively regular occurrence of disastrous fires in the city. Julius Caesar initiated an unprecedented building boom commencing about 50 bc, which continued after his assassination in 44 bc through to and following the death of Augustus in ad 14. Italy was still well forested at the start of the building boom and it was only in the later days of the empire that Italian forests came under significant pressure, particularly for fuel.

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