Wood is a natural resource undervalued in the Pyrenees catalanes. The wood is little used because of difficulties of the access in mountain areas, fragmentation of private forests and small business opportunities due to lack of recognition. Covering more than 55% of the area of the Natural Regional Park of Pyrenees catalanes (SM PNRPC), the forest is an important economic and environmental issue. The SM PNRPC works to revive the exploitation of forests with the certification of the mountain pine (pinus uncinata).
Mountain pine is a specie that covers 87 000 ha of the French and Spanish pyrenees on their Mediterranean side. Common in the eastern part of the Pyrenees, it’s rare in France, and it represents an asset to invest new economic markets. It represents the main forest resources of the Natural Regional Park and it remains to this day under-exploited.
Fir, spruce and scots pine are the main woods used on construction and carpentry, however, mountain pine has qualities that local actors (catalan and french) want to acknowledge. This wood has all the necessary technical qualities to be used as frame wood and could provide many economic opportunities for the territory. To obtain this recognition by builders and the timber industry, the Regional Park and its partners have undertaken to certify this wood to obtain the european standard CE (European conformity) for timber.
This wood was used on construction but now construction materials are regulated by European directives. Its certification is essential to promote its potential and to organize a local timber industry.
This certification is part of an european project between France and Spain “Unciplus” gathering eight partners including the Natural Regional Park of Pyrenees Catalan, French National Forestry (ONF), CIRAD, Region of Catalonia, … The certification of mountain pine as a building material required to organize technical and scientific studies and tests. This step was aimed at meeting the requirements of the European Directive “construction product” and to highlight the qualities of this mountain wood. The certification results are expected in 2013…
More informations on the european project website: http://www.unciplus.eu/