Table 9 : Status and trends in forest management

Criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management

Membership of ecoregional processes on criteria and indicators are listed using the following acronyms:

ATO = African Timber Organization
DZAf = Dry-Zone Africa Process on Criteria and Indicators for Sustainable Forest Management
DFAs = Regional Initiative for the Development and Implementation of National Level Criteria and Indicators for the Sustainable Management of Dry Forests in Asia
EUR = Pan-European Forest Process on Criteria and Indicators for Sustainable Forest Management
ITTO = International Tropical Timber Organization
LEP = Lepaterique Process of Central America on Criteria and Indicators for Sustainable Forest Management
MON = Montreal Process on Criteria and Indicators for the Conservation and Sustainable Management of Temperate and Boreal Forests
NE = Near East Process on Criteria and Indicators for Sustainable Forest Management
TARA = Tarapoto Proposal of Criteria and Indicators for Sustainability of the Amazon Forest

Four countries that were invited to join the Pan-European Forest Process (Bosnia-Herzegovina, Georgia, San Marino and Yugoslavia) as of December 2000 have been included in the table.

Area under forest management plans in 2000

For industrialized countries (Europe, CIS countries, Cyprus, Israel, Turkey, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United States), the areas listed include all forest areas managed irrespective of whether a formal plan exists or not. See further explanation under the geographical regions below. For additional information on these countries refer to UNECE/FAO (2000).

Some countries (including all the industrialized countries and many in South America) provided information both on the total area of forest managed or under a management plan (in hectares) and on the area in percentage of the latest figure available for the total area of forest.

In this study, the area figures provided have been used and the percentage figures (which are in percentage of the estimated forest area in 2000) may therefore differ from national statistics and should be treated with some caution. One notable exception concerns countries that reported that all forest areas were under management. In these cases the percentage figure (100 percent) was used and the actual area figure was recalculated to correspond to the 2000 forest area figure. The figure of the area under management may, therefore, differ from national statistics for these countries.

All national-level information was provided as part of FRA 2000 reporting or as national reports presented to Regional Forestry Commission meetings. Partial data were obtained from a variety of sources.

Africa. The definition used for area under forest management plans in Africa is: "The area of forest which is managed for various purposes (conservation, production, other) in accordance with a formal, nationally approved management plan over a sufficiently long period (five years or more)".

Asia. Two definitions for area under forest management plans were used in Asia. Industrialized countries (CIS countries, Cyprus, Israel, Japan and Turkey) reported on "Forest [and other wooded land] which is managed in accordance with a formal or an informal plan applied regularly over a sufficiently long period (five years or more). The management operations include the tasks to be accomplished in individual forest stands (e.g. compartments) during the given period". It was also recommended that any areas where a decision had been made not to manage the area at all should be included. The figures used are those pertaining to forests only, excluding other wooded lands.

The remaining countries reported on "The area of forest which is managed for various purposes (conservation, production, other) in accordance with a formal, nationally approved management plan over a sufficiently long period (five years or more)".

For Georgia, forests classified as "undisturbed" were listed as not managed.

For the Philippines, the area under forest management plans included forest land with less than 20 percent crown cover.

Oceania. With two exceptions (Australia and New Zealand), the definition used for area under forest management plans in Oceania was: "The area of forest which is managed for various purposes (conservation, production, other) in accordance with a formal, nationally approved management plan over a sufficiently long period (five years or more)".

For Australia and New Zealand, the definition included informal management plans and areas where a decision had been made not to manage the area at all.

For Australia, only the forests managed for wood supply were included in the figure provided.

Europe. The definition used for area under forest management plans in all the European countries was: "Forest [and other wooded land] which is managed in accordance with a formal or an informal plan applied regularly over a sufficiently long period (five years or more). The management operations include the tasks to be accomplished in individual forest stands (e.g. compartments) during the given period". It was also recommended that areas where a decision had been made not to manage the area at all should be included. The figures used are those pertaining to forests only, excluding other wooded lands.

For Italy, only forests with specific management plans were included in the figure given for forests under management. All other forests in the country are submitted to general silvicultural prescriptions.

For Finland, the original figure provided on the area of forest managed was 18 609 000 ha. However, as of December 2000 a total of 21.9 million hectares had been certified. Since this implies the existence of a management regime, this latter, more recent figure has been used.

North and Central America. With two exceptions (Canada and the United States), the definition used for area under forest management plans in North and Central America was: "The area of forest which is managed for various purposes (conservation, production, other) in accordance with a formal, nationally approved management plan over a sufficiently long period (five years or more)".

For Canada and the United States, the definition included informal management plans and areas where a decision had been made not to manage the area at all.

South America. The definition used for area under forest management plans in South America was: "The area of forest which is managed for various purposes (conservation, production, other) in accordance with a formal, nationally approved management plan over a sufficiently long period (five years or more)".

For Guyana, the figure provided on area under management equals the area under concession agreements, as all concessionaires must prepare a long-term forest management plan to be approved by the government.

Areas under forest management in 1990 and 1980

Figures for areas under forest management in 1990 and 1980 are taken from FAO (1988), FAO/UNEP (1982), UNECE/FAO (1985) and UNECE/FAO (1992). The percentages represent the percentage of the respective forest areas in 1980 and 1990 as provided in these references.

The definitions of forest under management were as follows:

For tropical countries in 1980, "Area of forest under intensive management" was defined as follows: "The concept of intensive management is used here in a restricted way and implies not only the strict and controlled application of harvesting regulations but also silvicultural treatments and protection against fires and diseases".

For UNECE countries in 1980, the definition was "Area of forest being managed according to a forest management plan".

For UNECE countries in 1990, "Forest under active management" was defined as "Forest and other wooded land that is managed according to a professionally prepared plan or is otherwise under a recognized form of management applied regularly over a long period (five years or more)".

Note that the definition of forest changed for industrialized countries between 1990 and 2000 (from crown cover of 20 percent to crown cover of 10 percent), so the figures are not directly comparable in some cases.

Europe. For Bulgaria, the area under forest management plans (1980) included other wooded land and the percentage is thus above 100.

For Yugoslavia, the figures from 1980 and 1990 correspond to the former Yugoslavia, hence the sharp decrease in area under management plans for the year 2000.

For further details, please refer to the references cited.

Certified forest areas

The cumulative area of forests certified under the following schemes is listed:

ATFP = American Tree Farm Program (as of December 2000)
CSA = Canada´s National Sustainable Forest Management System Standard (as of 21 December 2000)
FSC = Forest Stewardship Council - Accredited Certification Bodies (as of 31 December 2000)
GT = Green Tag (United States) (as of 31 December 2000)
PEFC = Pan-European Forest Certification (National schemes endorsed by the PRFC Council) (as of December 2000)
SFI = Sustainable Forest Initiative Program, American Forest and Paper Association (for Canada as of 21 December 2000, for the United States as of October 2000)

Although about 29 million hectares of land are enrolled in the SFI program in the United States and Canada, and plans are to have 56 million hectares under third-party certification by the end of 2001, only those areas which had already been independently certified by the end of 2000 have been included (12 million hectares in the United States and 1.04 million hectares in Canada).

Areas certified under the ISO 14001 Environmental Management System Standard scheme have only been included if also certified under specific forest certification schemes.

In Canada, a total of 30 980 046 ha of forest has been certified under the ISO 14001 Environmental Management System Standard scheme (as of 21 December 2000). However, only those area which have also been certified under CSA, FSC or SFI - equivalent to 3 615 000 ha - have been included in this table.

In New Zealand, more than 300 000 ha have been certified under the ISO 14001 Environmental Management System Standard scheme (as of May 2000). These areas have not been included in the table.

Ghana, Malaysia and Indonesia, among others, are developing national certification schemes and additional areas may soon be certified under these. A total of 2 325 356 ha of forests in three states of Malaysia (Pahang, Terengganu and Selangor) have, as a first step, been assessed to the requirements of a mutually agreed standard and were awarded audit statements by an independent third-party assessor (the Keurhout Foundation) under the Malaysia/Netherlands cooperation programme (H. Singh, National Timber Certification Council, Malaysia, personal communication, 2001).

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