Unasylva 239: The power of forests 28 December 2012 This edition of Unasylva comes in the wake of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, Rio+20, which, among other things, produced a document called The Future We Want . In it, world leaders renewed their commitment to sustainable development and recognized the enormous capacity of forests to address many of the most pressing sustainable development challenges. The articles in this edition of Unasylva suggest that awareness of the role of forests, and a willingness to pay for that role, will grow in coming decades; forests are too culturally, ecologically, economically and socially important to be neglected for much longer. Their move into the mainstream of development policy will do the world a power of good. [more]
21 December 2012 The United Nations General Assembly has proclaimed 21 March the International Day of Forests. The Day will be observed starting from 2013 in order to celebrate and raise awareness of the importance of all types of forests and trees outside forests. The Day captures the spirit and continues efforts of the International Year of Forests 2011, which enabled countries to facilitate activities on the sustainable management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests and trees.On each International Day of Forests, countries are encouraged to undertake local, national and international efforts to organize activities involving forests and tress, such as tree planting campaigns.The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations’ (FAO) Conference supported the idea of the Day and member states of the United Nations General Assembly facilitated the negotiation process for its establishment.FAO looks forward to support its members and work with international partners, including the Collaborative Partnership on Forests, to help celebrate the Day. [more]
18 December 2012 The global forest products industry is slowly recovering from the economic crisis, with the Asia-Pacific region and particularly China taking the lead. New data published by FAO indicate that on average global production of the main forest products grew by 1 to 4 percent in 2011 compared to 2010. [more]
Global forest land-use change 1990-2005 14 December 2012 FAO's new report, Global forest land-use change 1990-2005 , presents the key findings on forest land use and land-use change between 1990 and 2005 from FAO’s 2010 Global Forest Resources Assessment Remote Sensing Survey. This survey was the result of a partnership between FAO, countries and the European Commission Joint Research Centre. It is the first report of its kind to present systematic estimates of global forest land use and change. [more]
13 December 2012 The Schweighofer Prize is donated by the Austrian Schweighofer family, who has been engaged in the European woodworking industry for generations. Since 2003 the award is presented every second year, and is endowed with a total prize money of € 300,000. The Schweighofer Prize awards innovative ideas, technologies, products and services in order to strengthen the competitiveness of the European Forest Based Sector. [more]
Video: International Mountain Day 11 December 11 December 2012 In a changing climate, mountain regions are among the most vulnerable. They provide the world with resources such as water, timber, biodiversity and hydraulic energy and they are at risk. [more]
African partnership to halt desertification and land degradation 6 December 2012 The Great Green Wall initiative is bringing together more than twenty countries from the Sahelo-Saharan region, African and international organizations, research institutes, civil society and grassroots organizations to tackle social, economic and environmental impacts of land degradation and desertification in the Sahara and the Sahel. Supported by European Union, the Global Mechanism of the UNCCD and FAO, this African Union initiative is a flagship program to help countries of the Sahel and the Horn of Africa to make progress in their fight for food security, poverty alleviation and combating desertification. The African Ministerial Conference on Environment, held in September at Arusha, Tanzania, agreed that this initiative would be Africa’s contribution towards a land-degradation neutral world in the context of sustainable development commitments made at Rio+20, the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. [more]
Improving the assessment of forest biomass and carbon stocks, using tree equations 1 December 2012 Forest services in most countries are now required to make more accurate assessment of forest carbon stocks. Jointly published by FAO and the French research centre CIRAD, the Manual for building tree volume and biomass allometric equations is the first tool to provide all the necessary information from the field up to the biomass estimation. The appropriate development and use of tree allometric equations are particularly important when assessing forest carbon stocks and will help policymakers to make decisions regarding climate change mitigation activities. [more]
Africa Forest Communicators Network now online 29 November 2012 Facilitated by FAO and hosted by South Africa, the network is a voluntary partnership of forestry communication officers from both private and public sector organizations in Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and South Africa. The network will strengthen forest communication capacity by sharing solutions and best practice techniques to address forestry issues and challenges in the region. [more]
Mitigate and adapt to climate change through sustainable forest management 29 November 2012 Working at the forefront of climate change policy and practice, FAO, with its team of more than 150 forestry professionals, supports countries to raise awareness, strengthen technical capacity and create enabling policy environments. Recognizing that climate change affects us all, FAO also promotes collaboration among the forestry, agriculture, fisheries and energy sectors and between climate change and food security policy-makers. [more]
FAO Knowledge Event on climate-smart approaches for agriculture 23 November 2012 FAO will support countries during the upcoming 18th session of the Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP18) to be held from 26 November to 7 December 2012 in Doha Qatar to ensure that linkages between climate change, forests and food security issues are taken into account during the Conference. [more]
inFO News from FAO Forestry 22 November 2012 Read FAO Forestry's regular news round-up of recent and forthcoming events, projects, personnel and publications. [more]
Time to connect forest and agricultural producer organizations 19 November 2012 Did you know 2012 is the International Year of Cooperatives? Read more about the connection between forest and agriculture producer organizations in a new International Year of Cooperatives issue brief. [more]
Improving lives with poplars and willows 16 November 2012 Dehradun, India: Hosted by the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education and the Forest Research Institute, 22 countries gathered to attend the 24th Session of the International Poplar Commission. Forest scientists, researchers, tree growers, processors and traders addressed topical issues related to the theme Improving Lives with Poplars and Willows. [more]
International Conference on Forest Tenure Reform: 21-23 November 9 November 2012 Hangzhou, China: Hosted by China’s State Forest Administration, FAO-EU China Forest Tenure Project, Rights and Resources Initiative and Peking University, this conference will review the status of forest tenure reforms in China; share experiences from around the globe on the development and implementation of forest tenure policies, laws and regulations; and identify key pathways for China’s collective forest reforms including cooperative agreements with other countries. [more]
International Forestry Students Association takes part in World Forest Week 5 November 2012 For the first time, over 20 IFSA students took part in WFW/COFO, held from 24-28 September 2012. IFSA also co-sponsored a jobs fair with FAO on Friday, 28 September, which enabled students to interact with representatives from WWF Italy; Futuragene; Carbon Sink Group; the World Agroforestry Centre; the University of British Columbia; and FAO. IFSA President, Daniel Schraik, also participated as a panelist during the ‘Future Needs of the Forestry Workforce’ on Friday, 28 September. [more]
Project briefing on using treated waste water for forestry and agroforestry 25 October 2012 Rome: His Excellency Gianni Pittella, Vice-President of the EU Parliament, met with the Assistant Director General of Forestry, Eduardo Rojas-Briales, project staff and representatives of the Italian partner institutions to be briefed on the activities of a FAO project on the use of treated waste water in forestry and agroforestry systems to sustain livelihoods. [more]
Strength in Numbers: Effective forest producer organizations 4 October 2012 Forest producer organizations can be highly effective agents of poverty reduction through their advocacy and economic roles. Given the increasing amount of forest land now managed and controlled by individuals and communities, there is a need to strengthen cooperation in terms of forest products and services. Published by FAO, the Forest & Farm Facility and AgriCord with support from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland, this publication presents a wide range of country examples of how forest farmers have organized themselves and the lessons drawn so far. [more]
EU FAO FLEGT Programme: First call for proposals 28 September 2012 The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations announces the first call for proposals for projects through the EU FAO Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade Programme (EU FAO FLEGT Programme) . The four-year initiative has two main components: providing assistance to stakeholders in putting the European Union FLEGT Action Plan into practice, and supporting the collection, analysis and dissemination of FLEGT-related information and lessons learned among stakeholder groups. [more]
27 September 2012 The first-ever Wangari Maathai Award has been given today to a forestry activist from Nepal to recognize his efforts to promote community forest management. The ceremony took place at the Committee on Forestry (COFO), at FAO headquarters in Rome. [more]
Moving forward: Selected achievements of the FAO Forestry Programme 2010-2011 26 September 2012 In this 2012 edition of Moving Forward , FAO Forestry is pleased to present a selection of the work it undertook in the 2010-2011 biennium for the benefit of the global forestry community. The FAO Forestry Programme encompasses a vast range of activities and projects, of which this booklet presents only a sample. In all regions of the world, the Programme is helping to implement sustainable forest management and boost the livelihoods of forest-dependent people. [more]
25 September 2012 The forest sector in the Russian Federation needs to be modernized using innovations and breakthrough technologies to maximize its potential as a global mitigator of climate change and an important source of timber, according to a new study presented today by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Government of the Russian Federation. [more]
14th World Forestry Congress Agreement signed 24 September 2012 FAO Director-General, José Graziano da Silva and Pieter Willem Mulder, South African Deputy Minister for Agriculture, Forestry and Water, today signed a Cooperation Agreement allowing FAO and South Africa to begin preparations for the 14th World Forestry Congress to be held in September 2015 in Durban."By 2015 we expect that the Congress will present an opportunity for the global forestry community to raise awareness and analysis of key issues that will face the sector then. We will be pleased if the outcome will include new ways to address technical, scientific and policy actions within the forestry sector, ” Mulder said. [more]
24 September 2012 FAO Director-General Jose'Graziano da Silva underlines the importance of forestry in overall sustainable at the opening of FAO's Committee on Forestry. The nexus between forestry and sustainable development was one of the cross-cutting issues considered at the Rio+20 Conference in June. [more]
Webcasting the 21st Session of the Committee on Forestry 24-28 September 21 September 2012 Rome: Key events from the Committee on Forestry will be webcast in 6 languages. The COFO meeting brings together senior policy-makers, heads of forest services and representatives of international forest organizations to identify emerging forest issues, seek solutions, and advise on appropriate action. The winner of the inaugural CPF Wangari Maathai Award will also be announced. The US$20,000 award is an initiative of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF) in recognition of outstanding contributions made by an individual to preserve, restore and sustainably manage forests and to communicate the key role of forests in rural livelihoods and the environment across generations. The award honours the life and work of the late Kenyan and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate, Wangari Muta Maathai. [more]
Unlocking national opportunities: new insights on financing sustainable forest and land management 18 September 2012 One of the main challenges countries face in enhancing sustainable forest and land management is to increase the competitiveness of these land uses when compared with unsustainable ones. This policy brochure, drawn from experience in more than 80 countries worldwide, focuses on the development and implementation of strategies to enhance financing for sustainable forest and land management. Jointly published by FAO , the Global Mechanism, the National Forest Programme Facility, Tropenbos International and the International Tropical Timber Organization, it is intended for national and international policymakers and practitioners in both the public and private sectors. [more]
Place forests under local control to increase incomes and sustainability 7 September 2012 To increase the incomes of many of the billion forest-dependent people worldwide the current model for investment in forests must be turned on its head. An initiative, led by The Forests Dialogue (TFD), IUCN and the Growing Forests Partnerships (GFP), has found that optimizing the benefits and productivity of forests requires moving from a ‘resource-led’ model to a ‘rights-based’ system of ‘locally controlled forestry’, that places local control of forests at the heart of the investment process. [more]
26 July 2012 A new regional initiative will help ten Central African countries to set up advanced national forest monitoring systems, FAO announced today. The forestry project will be managed jointly by the Central Africa Forests Commission (COMIFAC) and FAO in close collaboration with the Brazilian National Institute for Space Research (INPE). [more]
Farmers benefit from forest privatization in China 16 July 2012 The FAO forest tenure project, underway in 6 provinces in China, is helping smooth the transition to private forest ownership. Funded by the European Commission and implemented by the State Forestry Administration of China, the project will also improve rural livelihoods as well as make forest management more sustainable. [more]
Turning knowledge into action: sustainable forest management 12 July 2012 Sustainable forest management is one of FAO's focus areas where experience, expertise and knowledge are shared to achieve results and impact on the ground. FAO promotes sustainable forest management by supporting Member Countries directly through field projects and by working at international level to address and help solve regional and global forest-related issues. [more]
5 July 2012 The EU FAO FLEGT programme is recruiting a forestry officer to coordinate the implementation of programme activities in support of forest law enforcement, governance and trade (FLEGT) in Latin America. The position will be based in Rome, Italy with possible relocation to Latin America. [more]
Job vacancy: FLEGT Forestry Officer, Asia 5 July 2012 The EU FAO FLEGT programme is recruiting a forestry officer to coordinate the implementation of programme activities in support of forest law enforcement, governance and trade (FLEGT) in Asia. The position will be based in Rome, Italy with possible relocation to Asia. [more]
Can significant financial investment reach emerging markets in forestry? 25 June 2012 Pension funds and other institutional investors are investing increasing financial resources in forestry and wood processing. Under what conditions are they investing in forests in developing countries? A survey of institutional investors, commissioned by FAO, the National Forest Programme Facility, Tropenbos International and supported by Natural Resources Canada - Canadian Forest Service, attempts to answer these questions. It illustrates the current investment patterns in forestry and downstream wood processing by institutional investors and identifies bottlenecks that appear to impede further investments. The report includes practical guidance on how to facilitate successful partnerships between institutional investors and sound forestry enterprises in developing countries. [more]
25 June 2012 By providing food, fuel, fibre, medicines, and other necessities, forests and the forest products industry present a solution for a viable, sustainable future. At the Rio+20 side-event titled “Forests: The Heart of a Green Economy”, a range of high-level speakers and experts highlighted the potential of forests in the bio-economy to boost global economic sustainability, the role of forest certification programs in the green economy, and the contribution of the forest industry to rural development and livelihoods. [more]
18 June 2012 The world's forests have a major role to play in the transition to a new, greener economy, a theme being discussed at the Rio+20 Conference. But to spark that shift, governments must enact programs and policies aimed at both unlocking the potential of forests and ensuring that they are sustainably managed, according to a new FAO report presented in Rio. [more]
Supporting small forest enterprises - a toolkit for facilitators 15 June 2012 Small and medium forest enterprises are critical to the poor. They generate local wealth, help to secure local resources and environmental accountability, promote local creativity and help to preserve indigenous cultures and market niches. The Forest Connect Alliance, led by the International Institute for Environment and Development and FAO, work to better link small and medium forest enterprises to each other, to markets, to service providers and to policy processes. The toolkit provides hands-on guidance, followed by practical tips, on a range of activities for supporting forest enterprises at all levels. [more]
Rio+20 High-Level Side Event: The Landscape: transformative action through cross-sectoral coordination 15 June 2012 Sponsored by the Collaborative Partnership on Forests, this high-level event on 19 June provides an opportunity to discuss the importance of integrated sustainable land management or a ‘landscape’ approach to improve cross-sectoral actions that contribute to economic development. The event will provide heads of CPF member organizations and principals as well as forestry ministers the opportunity to discuss examples and concrete benefits from using a landscape approach. [more]
6 June 2012 FAO Advisory Committee on Paper and Wood Products (ACPWP) has concluded its 53rd Session in New Delhi, India. The committee welcomes the proposed new FAO strategic objectives in which forestry and forest-based products play a vital role. Forestry and forest-based industries are strategically positioned close to rural communities, providing livelihoods and contributing to the eradication of hunger globally. They offer innovative solutions to many of the world’s most pressing problems including climate change mitigation and energy security. [more]
CPF releases sustainable forest management fact sheets 4 June 2012 As the world celebrates World Environment Day and prepares to gather for the Rio+20 Conference, the Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF), a voluntary arrangement consisting of 14 international organizations, institutions and secretariats, releases eight fact sheets underlining the important role of forests and sustainable forest management (SFM) for human well-being, sustainable development and a green economy. [more]
Building forest landscapes resilient to global changes in drylands 28 May 2012 Over 80 forestry experts and international development partners from 24 countries of Africa, Near East, Central Asia and the Mediterranean gathered in Konya (Turkey) from 28-31 May at an international workshop. This event was held in response to recommendations by FAO member countries to develop operational guidelines for the restoration of degraded forest landscapes and lands under the difficult environmental and socio-economic conditions in arid and semi-arid zones, for the benefit of the local population. [more]
18 May 2012 The ACP-FLEGT Support Programme in partnership with the Forestry Commission of Ghana and the EFI EU FLEGT Facility, is soliciting papers for a regional workshop on “ Experiences from the FLEGT/VPA process in West and Central African countries ”, scheduled for 23 - 25 October 2012 in Accra, Ghana. [more]
Forest management and climate change: stakeholder perceptions 18 May 2012 FAO, in collaboration with forest management, climate change experts and relevant stakeholders, is developing guidelines to assist forest managers to effectively respond to climate change challenges and opportunities. These guidelines will include actions related to both climate change adaptation and mitigation and will be relevant to all types of forests, all management objectives and all types of managers. To facilitate the development of the guidelines, a survey was conducted through which forest stakeholders provided their views and perceptions on factors that influence the ability of forest managers to respond to climate change. This publication presents the results of the survey [more]
FAO Governance of tenure photo competition closes soon 17 May 2012 Sometimes it takes a picture to see. Raising awareness of the importance of tenure governance is crucial. Photographers are invited to demonstrate their ideas on the “Governance of Tenure” that capture the diversity of regions, people, social problems and solutions that are linked to it. [more]
16 May 2012 FAO is helping scientists and policymakers in Tanzania to evaluate how much carbon is stored in forests and forests soils, which will enable them to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. A new FAO soil survey project was presented today at the UN Climate Change Conference taking place in Bonn, Germany. [more]
FAO publishes Yearbook of Forest Products 14 May 2012 The 64th issue of the FAO Yearbook of Forest Products has just been released. Published in 5 languages, the 2010 yearbook contains annual data on the production and trade in forest products for the years 2006-2010 and on the direction of trade in 2009 and 2010. The full forest products time series starting in 1961 are also available online at http://faostat.fao.org . The publication of the yearbook is made possible by the cooperation of governments who supply information using questionnaires. This edition benefits from expanded co-operation in gathering forest sector statistics among a number of international organizations. [more]
11 May 2012 In a landmark decision the Committee on World Food Security today endorsed a set of far-reaching global guidelines aimed at helping governments safeguard the rights of people to own or access land, forests and fisheries. The new Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests in the Context of National Food Security outline principles and practices that governments can refer to when making laws and administering land, fisheries and forests rights. [more]
Video: Why voluntary guidelines for land, fisheries and forests tenure governance are important 11 May 2012 The Voluntary Guidelines on the Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests has been approved by the 38th Session of the Committee on World Food Security. This video explains the three year process involved in preparing the Voluntary Guidelines, the significance of this endorsement, and next steps. [more]
Forests: 8th Roundtable at Rio+20 9 May 2012 Rio de Janeiro, 19 June 2012: Organized by CIFOR , Forests: The 8th Roundtable at Rio+20 will gather global experts and policy makers to discuss new research findings – and remaining knowledge gaps -- and their policy implications for integrating forests into the solutions to four key challenges toward a green economy: Energy, food and income, water, and climate. [more]
Nominations open for Wangari Maathai Award 2012 8 May 2012 The Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF) has launched the first ever Wangari Maathai Award to honour and commemorate an extraordinary woman who championed forest issues around the world. The USD20,000 award will be given in recognition of outstanding contributions made by an individual to preserve, restore and sustainably manage forests and to communicate the key role forests play in rural livelihoods and the environment across generations. [more]
23 April 2012 Applications are welcome for the new Erasmus Mundus Master Course Programme: MEDfOR - Mediterranean Forestry and Natural Resources Management. The programme welcomes students from all over the world. Additional scholarships are available from the Mediterranean Office for Youth (MOY) and the Projet Régional Silva Mediterranea of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ GmbH). [more]
Forests: the heart of a green economy 5 April 2012 FAO and other international organizations will join forces with the private sector to make the forest sector more visible at Rio+20 by holding a forward-looking side event on 18 June. The role of forests and forest industries in building the green economy and fostering rural development at the resource base – the two key themes of Rio+20 – will be highlighted. Increasingly, the climate-smart management of forests and the wise use of trees are seen as a collaborative effort between the public and private holders of forests, large and small private enterprises and local communities. [more]
Earth Day 22 April 4 April 2012 Anggun, FAO Goodwill Ambassador, celebrated the 42nd UN Earth Day in concert in Naples, Italy. Anggun participated in the International Year of Forests 2011 and has been witness to the initiative YUNGA (Youth and United Nations Global Alliance), whose purpose is to raise awareness and educate children and young people in environmental issues such as climate change and biodiversity. [more]
26 March 2012 The results of a new FAO global Teak Resources and Market Assessment conducted in 60 tropical countries show that natural teak forests are declining worldwide and that the quality of natural grown teak wood is deteriorating. On the other hand, the survey also reveals that planted teak forests are increasing in area and - when good management practices are applied - producing high quality wood. [more]
Global Forest Resources Assessment 2010 now available on CD-ROM 23 March 2012 The CD contains the key findings and main report of the Global Forest Resources Assessment 2010. It also contains all country reports, result tables in Excel format and terms and definitions. It is a multi-lingual CD and published in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish. [more]
New e-learning course in forest health protection 16 March 2012 FAO has released an e-learning course aimed at improving the health of the world’s forests and reducing the risk of spreading forest pests through international trade. The course – Good practices for forest health protection – is based on the Guide to implementation of phytosanitary standards in forestry that provides easy to understand information about everything you should know to help protect forests from pests. Developed as a refresher course for forest sector personnel, this e-learning course will also be of interest to anyone interested in learning more about how to protect the health of our forests. [more]
Unasylva 238: Measuring forest degradation 9 March 2012 Unasylva closes the International Year of Forests 2011 with a selection of papers on forest degradation. These were developed as part of a special study FAO and its partners conducted to create a set of indicators on the state of forest degradation. Also featured is a major study that analysed remote sensing imagery to understand forest-cover and land-use change; and a way to use such data to map the myriad opportunities for forest landscape restoration. [more]
Forest management and climate change: a literature review 9 March 2012 As part of a FAO-led process to prepare climate change guidelines for forest managers, this publication summarizes the knowledge, challenges and experiences in forest management and climate change impacts, based on a literature review and a survey of forest managers. A number of gaps in enabling conditions (related to knowledge, institutional setting and culture) that hamper forest managers from responding effectively to climate change and its impacts, are identified. [more]
28 February 2012 The School of Environment, Natural Resources and Geography at Bangor University, Wales, have secured up to 15 scholarships from the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission for MSc Forestry (Distance Learning) for September 2012 entry. The scholarship also includes a generous travel bursary to enable scholars to attend an international study tour. Applicants from the following developing Commonwealth countries are eligible for the scholarship: Bangladesh, Botswana, Cameroon, The Gambia, Ghana, Guyana, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Namibia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Rwanda, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. [more]
Global Forest Resources Assessment interactive database now online 1 February 2012 A new interactive online database provides access to most of the collected information in FAO's comprehensive and most recent Global Forest Resources Assessment (FRA 2010). The main module has options to use multiple output formats and generate simple diagrams, providing easier and more flexible access to FRA data. [more]
FAO Forestry launches multimedia app 20 January 2012 FAO’s Forestry Department has launched FAO’s first multimedia app, designed to bring its work on forests and forestry to a growing generation of iPhone and iPad users. The ‘FAO Forestry’ App can be downloaded free from the Apple App store and provides users with news, videos, select publications, interactive maps showing world forest statistics, and a quiz, all navigable with a touch-screen wheel. It also includes a ‘donate’ button that takes users to the website of FAO’s TeleFood fundraising programme – which uses public contributions to finance small-scale agriculture, livestock and fisheries projects that help poor families achieve food security. [more]
last updated:  Tuesday, April 9, 2013