In March 2001, the FAO Committee on Forestry (COFO) requested FAO to assist countries in incorporating linkages between sustainable forest management and other sectors, including agriculture. COFO also requested that FAO develop effective national policy frameworks and national forestry programmes and promote information exchange between forestry and related sectors. As a result of this demand coming from FAO member countries, the Forestry Policy and Institutions Service of the Forestry Department initiated in 2001 a series of studies on available information and research needs. This included a review of the use of the integrated system of environmental and economic accounting (SEEA) to monitor and measure cross‑sectoral policy impacts.
The purpose of the current manual on Environmental and Economic Accounts for Forestry (EEAF) is to strengthen cross-sectoral policy analysis - promoting its use by regional or local institutions at sub-national level - by providing a tool for better monitoring and evaluation of cross-sectoral linkages, and for integrating forest goods and services into national economic development. The target audience includes policy analysts and decision-makers in government ministries at national and local levels, universities and research organizations, NGOs and other citizen groups. The manual is meant to be user-friendly and therefore strike a balance between the technical aspects of forest accounting and a clear explanation of how forest accounts can be used by each stakeholder in formulating policy.
Dr Glenn-Marie Lange, Centre for Economy, Environment and Society, Earth Institute, Columbia University, drafted the manual under the technical supervision of Yves C. Dubé, Forestry Officer.
It is hoped that this manual will be used and tested by many government agencies responsible for forestry and complement other information systems such as national forest resource assessments. It is part of a larger effort on cross-sectoral linkages that is carrying out work on other aspects of this issue: governance, institution strengthening, legal framework or economic and social aspects. Your comments and suggestions for improving it would be most welcome.
Chief, Forestry Policy and Institutions Service
Forestry Policy and Information Division