A sustainable forest is one that is neither lacking enough trees nor has too many. In a sustainable forest, once a tree is cut down, seedlings are then planted so that another tree will grow to replace that one. Sustainable forests must be managed to ensure so there is a balance and that we have forests while still being able to have lumber and other resources.
Forests, as an ecological system, are already sustainable. Forests only become unsustainable when humans begin harvesting the resources necessary to continue the survival of the forest. Even then, a forest can continue to exist and repair itself when the ecological system is damaged, but only to a certain point.
Humans have the ability to manage forests sustainably. A definition for sustainable forest management was conceived by the Ministerial Conference on the Protection of Forests in Europe. The definition states:
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