The RERAM project has received funding from the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under the grant agreement no. 609573.

North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany



North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), with an area of 34,100 km² and a total of 18 million inhabitants, is the most densely populated federal state of Germany (pop. density 515 inh. per km²). Located in the Western central part of Germany, NRW shares borders with the Netherlands and Belgium.


The strongly industrialised state produces 22% of the German GDP. Its capital city Düsseldorf and its largest city Köln/Cologne (population 1 million) belong to the Rhine-Ruhr Area, one of the largest industrial and urban agglomerations in Europe.


n the rural area, forests cover 915,000 hectare or 27% of the territory. The forest area shows nearly equal balance


NRW forest cover map (Source: IIWH - click to enlarge)

of coniferous (52%) and broadleaved tree species (48%). With 600,000 ha or 67%, the share of private forests is higher than in any other federal state (German average: 43%). However, these forests belong to a total of 150,000 private owners and hence are largely fragmented.


The heavyweight forest-based sector of NRW comprises 18,000 enterprises, 180,000 employees and 25 billion EUR yearly turnover and represents around 8% of total manufacturing. NRW is a major centre in Europe of the sawmilling, wooden panel and furniture industries with large-scale production capacities and strong players on the European market. The continuously growing demand for wood from wood industries, the bioenergy sector and the emerging chemical industries will add further pressure to the regional timber market and lead to major structural changes during the coming decades.


Official webportal:

RERAM partner: Wald-Zentrum / IIWH