Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Rural people key to saving the world’s forests

09.03.2002


The best way to conserve many of the world’s forests — and alleviate poverty in some of its poorest countries — is to allow rural communities to generate income by selling forest products, rather than tightly regulating forest use, according to a report released on 7 March.

Forests are vital to one quarter of the world’s poorest people, who depend on forest resources for their subsistence, the report says. It adds that improving the lives of these people through commercial forestry is essential to conservation.

The report, Making Markets Work for Forest Communities, runs counter to conventional wisdom on forest conservation.



“If we want to protect the world’s forests, let’s not lock them up,” says Sara Scherr, one of the authors of the report and senior policy analyst for the US-based organisation Forest Trends, which released the report together with the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) in Indonesia.

Eight per cent of the world’s forests are in legally protected areas, where there are tight restrictions on the use of forest products. The report deals with the management of the vast areas of forest outside of these reserves.

“When local people get involved, they have an incentive to conserve the forest,” says Scherr.

Rural communities and indigenous people now control over one quarter of the developing world’s forests. But, the report says, local communities are often not allowed to commercially exploit forests.


In the Brazilian Amazon, for example, the government has recognised the rights of indigenous groups to about 75 million hectares of forest. But timber harvests are banned in the same area.

“This restriction creates conditions under which illegal logging becomes the only viable option, with mahogany sold for US$30 per tree to traders, who resell it for upwards of US$3,000,” says Andy White, programme director of Forest Trends and another author of the report.

“We have to make it easy for small producers to operate legally,” says Scherr. “Existing regulations are hurting the small landholders, not the large plantation owners. There is a need to level the playing field.”

But John Palmer, manager of the UK Department for International Development’s forestry research programme, argues that it is not just a ‘simple’ matter of reforming legislation.

“The capacity of most developing countries for legislative drafting is very weak, especially on environmental issues,” he says. “What most communities need to know is how to operate under the existing regimes of rampant corruption and unsuitable legislation.”

Katie Mantell | SciDev.Net

More articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation:

nachricht Value from wastewater
16.08.2017 | Hochschule Landshut

nachricht Species Richness – a false friend? Scientists want to improve biodiversity assessments
01.08.2017 | Carl von Ossietzky-Universität Oldenburg

All articles from Ecology, The Environment and Conservation >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

A Map of the Cell’s Power Station

18.08.2017 | Life Sciences

Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form

18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers printed graphene-like materials with inkjet

18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>