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RECOFTC: May People and Forests E-Newsletter
We’re nearing the middle of the International Year of Forests. The launch celebrations have subsided, but they left the forestry world with a call to action: to safeguard "forests for people."
In this issue’s commentary, Ben Vickers explores how Asian forests can contribute to the global focus. Planting in Asia is slowing the rate of the world's forest loss, but is that enough?
This month saw the launch of a new RECOFTC Community Based Learning Centers program in Pred Nai, Thailand, and brought a big advancement for people living in and around forests in Cambodia, where 38 RECOFTC-supported sites gained official Community Forest status. To learn more about the status of social forestry throughout Southeast Asia, check out RECOFTC’s latest study.
As a friendly reminder, we're accepting case study presentation proposals for the Second Regional Forum for People and Forests until 25 May. If you have a story of successes or valuable lessons in community forestry, we'd love to hear from you!
Until next month,
Editor, People and Forests E-News
International: Films Explore Who Gets to Decide About Forests
Six new, short films by the Forest Governance Learning Group ask the question "Who gets to decide about forests?" Videos highlighting Ghana, Malawi, Uganda, and Vietnam show how small teams can impact forest governance.
Bangladesh: Facing Dwindling Forests, Minister Calls for Social Forestry
At Bangladesh’s first-ever forestry congress, the finance minister revealed that forest coverage has dropped to 9%. To address the issue, he called for social afforestation and massive tree plantation in each village.
Indonesia: EU and Indonesia Sign Deal on Illegal Timber
Indonesia and the European Union have finalized an agreement aimed at ending the trade in illegally sourced wood, which mandates that timber exports to Europe must be certified. The EU hopes that the system will serve as a model for Indonesia's foreign timber trade across the board.
Indonesia: Scheme to Save Rainforests Seems Too Good to Be True
A forest protection project in Borneo seems to offer many benefits including conservation of trees and wildlife and “community development” initiatives. However, three years on, the final land-use decree has yet to appear. Such problems will likely continue to plague REDD+.
Malaysia: Forest Plunderers Now Protectors
The number of cases filed for stealing resources in Madhupur forest dropped significantly after the forest department provided 400 local people forestry training for two months last year. People who once stole resources are now helping to develop the traditional sal forest.
Nepal: Forest Users Protest Conservation Area Declaration
The Federation of Community Forestry Users’ Committee Nepal has threatened legal action against a conservation area declared in Gaurishankar without obtaining the free, prior, and informed consent of the local community.
Papua New Guinea:Controversial Grants of Community Forestland Suspended
The government has suspended a controversial program that granted logging and plantation development concessions to mostly foreign corporations across 5.2 million hectares of community forestland. In some cases leases had been granted without permission or knowledge of the local community.
Thailand: Forest Initiative Raising Suspicions
Disputes over rights to use forests in Cambodia and Thailand are raising concerns about the repercussions of REDD+ for local communities. RECOFTC’s Rawee Thaworn notes that respect for indigenous rights will play a major role in the scheme’s success or failure in Thailand.
Read the rest of the newsletter here.
Posted By Adam Houston at 10:24am on May 24, 2011
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