Smallholder forestry fight climate change

The potential of locally controlled forestry is part of the solution to climate change. This message IFFA advocated during the Climate Change Convention Conference, COP 22, in Marrakech in Morocco.

  • Published: 10.11.2016
  • Published by: Lennart Aczell
  • Tags: #Climate 
  • The G3 Alliance together at COP 22, from left Lennart Ackzell, IFFA, Edna Kaptoyo, IAITPTF, Ghan Shyam Pandey, GACF, and Peter deMarsh, IFFA.

    IFFA provided its position at various discussions and in collaboration with our alliances in the Rights holders group.

    Locally controlled forestry is an important tool through land tenure reforms, efficient forest producer organisations and market access for products from sustainably managed forests.

    Market demand financing

    A market demand for wood and forest products will incentivize the willingness to establish more trees and forests. This is the best climate action. Sustainable management forests maintain the forests' uptake of CO2 and provides renewable raw material for a range of forest products to replace fossil fuel- based products and energy. And the financing is market driven!

    Improving livelihoods, sustainably managing forests, and fighting climate change must not be treated as separate problems, requiring distinct solutions. If that approach is taken, there is a big risk that the separate solutions will undermine each other, and the positive interactions and synergies from an integrated solution will be lost, underlines IFFA.

    Non-manage trees will decompose

    If local people is excluded, non-managed, "protected" forest will have trees that reach climax stage and die and emit CO2 in the decomposition process. Other means of improving livelihoods will have to be found, increasing the stress on other resources and budgets outside the forest. 

    Sustainable forest management can increase both forest stock and the production of forest products. Both of these increase carbon storages and reduce emissions of CO2. Increased production of forest products improves livelihoods and increases the financing available for further improvements in SFM.

    This locally controlled forestry provides substantial support for a range of the sustainable development goals such as poverty eradication, climate change action, food security etc., IFFA said.

    Forest action day

    IFFA was particularly heard when participating in a Round table discussion which was part of Forest Action Day organized by FAO and the Government of Morocco.  IFFA interventions were reinforced by statements from many African countries and different NGOs. Strong emphasis on the importance of focusing on forest smallholders and communities, and on secure tenure were expressed by FAO’s Assistant Director General for Forestry René Castro and by Mr. Bad Raoui from the Government of Morocco and Stewart Magginis from IUCN.

    Mr. Castro also informed the meeting that the on the previous day at the Collaborative Partnership on Forestry (CPF), FAO proposed a new financial mechanism to provide support for smallholder and community forest producers.

    IFFA at Forest Action Day, Peter deMarsh in the center and FAO forestry director René Castro to the far right

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