The on-line consultation has now been completed. Thank you all: you made many lively and constructive contributions. Over the consultation as a whole, there were 34 individuals or groups who contributed, sometimes more than once, representing all regions and many different specialities. In addition, the webpage of the consultation received in total around 1,300 page views over the 3 weeks of the consultation. This clearly demonstrates a high level of interest in the question. Most of the contributions were quite comprehensive and all showed that the contributor had thought in depth about the issues
It is fair to say that everyone supported the basic concept of the Global Core Set of Forest-related Indicators, which should be short, comprehensive and balanced, and help the forest sector to monitor the high level policy commitments on forests, while reducing the reporting burden.
In addition to the points I mentioned in the first two overviews, the following emerged in the last few days:
- Faced with the challenge of devising indicators on difficult topics, it was suggested that provisions be made for continuous development of the Global Core Set. For instance, indicators which were not ripe for inclusion, for methodological or data reasons, could be put on a “candidate list” to be worked on.
- On process, the on-line consultation will be reported to the Expert Consultation on the FRA2020 in June, which will also discuss the core set. Thereafter, the CPF will finalise the list and present it to UNFF13 in 2018.
- Many expressed a wish for an indicator on non-wood forest products
- On forest-related jobs, many wanted to expand the scope beyond “forestry and logging” to include downstream activities (industries) and forest related jobs in tourism, research, education, conservation and so on, as well as forest-related subsistence livelihoods.
- PEFC and FSC are now working together to quantify forest areas with double certification, removing one obstacle to estimating the total area of certified forest.
- Many stressed the importance of including “Share of forest area disturbed”, while acknowledging problems in measuring the various disturbances, and combining the outcomes.
- When agreed, the Global Core Set should have a “narrative” setting out its objectives, and a set of notes on how the indicators should be interpreted.
- Throughout, the indicators should be consistent with other relevant work, notably FRA, IUCN (on protected areas), UNFCCC (on GHG stocks and flows) etc.
- An indicator on the contribution of forests and trees to food security would be desirable, because of Global Forest Goal 2.3. But how to measure it? One participant started the discussion with some suggestions, but, as she said, much remains to be done.
- In the context of “forest dependent people”, one contributor pointed out that we are all dependent on forests in one way or another, which is true.