UK, WWF and IUCN Forest landscape restoration
The World Conservation Union (IUCN), the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) and the United Kingdom Forestry Commission launched a new Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration, to serve as a meeting point for governments, communities, organizations and other bodies interested in restoration activities that promote sustainable development. Partnership activities will include exchange of information on potential forest landscape restoration, analysis of the contribution of forest landscape restoration in implementing current laws and agreements, presentation of case studies, and organizations of international workshops. Successful forest landscape restorations are already taking place in Tanzania, Borneo, Mexico and England (See link to the summary below).
Harmonizing forest-related definitions
Director of Forest Products Division of the FAO Wulf Killman introduced the topic of harmonizing forest-related definitions. The process, he explained, emerged from recommendations made at 2001 sessions of COFO and the Committee on Agriculture (COAG). The process was endorsed by FAO, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO), the Center for International Forestry, the United Nations Environment Progamme (UNEP), the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO), and the Collaborative Partnership on Forests, with the objective of harmonizing core-related definitions as used by different stakeholders. The process resulted in a report which can be found in the FAO website (see link information below).
Senior Forestry Officer of FAO Dieter Schoene provided examples of different definitions used by the IPCC, the Forest Resource Assessment 2000 and the Convention on Biodiversity. He highlighted the significant ambiguities that arise from inconsistent definitions of forests and reforestation, and how they lead to serious discrepancies in carbon accounting. Outcomes of the process included stakeholder recommendations comprised of consistent “forest” parameters, and merging of reforestation and afforestation definitions; and process recommendations including standardized carbon terminology; definitions for low forest cover countries; and a typology of planted forests.
Forests and biodiversity
World Conservation Union (IUCN) Chief Scientist Jeffrey McNeely gave a presentation on biodiversity and forestry. Reviewing the relevance of biodiversity and climate change to forest management, he emphasized that sustainable forest management (SFM) based on ecosystem principles is entirely consistent with the needs of biodiversity conservation. He called for protection of remaining large forest areas; rebuilding connectivity among small adjacent protected areas by including intervening habitat and promoting reforestation of the landscape; protection of the forest edge against structural damage; diversification and promotion of less intensive types of land use and control the introduction of invasive species; allocation of the total forest landscape to specified land uses; inclusion of ecological reserves within commercial forests; and basing forest management decisions on local peoples’ legitimate needs for sustainable access to the diversity of forest resources. In the ensuing discussion, participants emphasized the need to bring in sectoral communities, including WTO and small forest owners, into the discourse on forests and biodiversity.