Definition of Native Forests

Uruguay’s definition of native forests

Uruguay defines native forest in the public law N°15939, 1987, and its regulatory decrees (Forestry Law): “Forests are plant associations in which trees of any size, exploited or not, predominate, and which are in a position to produce wood or other forest products or to exert some influence on soil conservation, on the hydrological regime or on the climate, or that provide shelter or other benefits of national interest.

Based on the Decree N°452/988 that regulates the application of Law N°15939 and the methodological and operational criteria used for satellite imaging (cartographies), forests are considered to be those plant associations which, in addition to the characteristics established in Article 4 of the aforementioned law, has a minimum area of 2,500 m2 and at least 200 trees per hectare and a coverage of at least 30% of the area.