Mountain forests

 

Mountains cover around 27 percent of the earth’s land surface, and forests cover more than 40 percent of the global mountain area.

Healthy mountain forests are crucial to the ecological health of the world. They protect watersheds that supply freshwater to more than half of humankind. They also harbour wildlife, provide food and fodder for mountain peoples and are important sources of timber and non-wood products. Moreover, they protect the earth and contribute to shielding the atmosphere from CO2 emissions.

Protecting these forests and making sure they are carefully managed is an important step towards sustainable mountain development. In the last decades, tropical mountain forests have been disappearing at an astounding rate. Deforestation is generally driven by population growth, the expansion of intensive agriculture, uncertain land tenure, inequitable land distribution and the absence of strong and stable institutions.

Crucially, mountain forests perform a protective function against natural hazards, so that when forest cover is lost and the land is left unprotected, runoff and soil erosion increase, provoking landslides, avalanches and floods, to the detriment of villages, transport systems, human infrastructure and of the food security of vulnerable populations.

Putting power back into the hands of mountain people is one important step towards alleviating their poverty and, in turn, protecting mountain forests. Measures that could accomplish these aims include providing incentives for biodiversity and agro-biodiversity conservation as well as the inclusion sustainable forest management plans into national policies. 

IPROMO 2020 call for applications: Mountains in a changing climate

IPROMO 2020 call for applications: Mountains in a changing climate

peak to peak

Peak to Peak 2020 launches the call for applications to IPROMO 2020, which will focus on the theme "Mountains in a changing climate". This month's Members' Voices is about new member "Mountain Homestays", which includes a survey for members interested in getting involved in community-based tourism. Peak to Peak July highlights four...

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Living Chapel launch event agenda

publication

Living Chapel launch event agenda

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Plateau Perspectives launches documentary on ecotourism in Kyrgyzstan

Plateau Perspectives launches documentary on ecotourism in Kyrgyzstan

peak to peak

The June 2020 edition of Peak to Peak starts off with Plateau Perspective's new documentary film on ecotourism, jointly released with the Mountain Partnership and the International Ecotourism Society on the International Day for Biological Diversity. This month's Members' Voices is about Mountain Partnership Products Initiative women producers of chamomile tea in...

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How to better include mountain areas in the next programming period? A step-by-step factsheet for managing authorities

How to better include mountain areas in the next programming period? A step-by-step factsheet for managing authorities

publication

Euromontana has created a timely factsheet to better consider mountain areas’ specificities and needs to address the challenges faced by managing authorities of mountain communities. Available in English and French, the factsheet gives recommendations on all steps of the design and implementation of operational programmes for mountain areas.

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FAO Assists in Enhancing the Resilience of Mountain Communities and Environments

FAO Assists in Enhancing the Resilience of Mountain Communities and Environments

publication

This article was written by the Mountain Partnership Secretariat Coordinator Yuka Makino for the Mountain Research and Development journal. The article outlines the ways in which the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has played a leading role in sustainable mountain development within the United Nations system.

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2020 Booklet of Good Practices for vibrant European mountains

2020 Booklet of Good Practices for vibrant European mountains

publication

To celebrate the start of 2020, Euromontana – the European Association of Mountain Areas - published a new booklet of good practices. This brochure is the result of the exchange of good practices carried out by Euromontana in 2019 and aims at showcasing innovative initiatives for the development of...

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