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This report represents a collection of papers on recent efforts to develop guidelines and codes of practices in forest operations and engineering. The papers were presented at the "Meeting of Experts on Forest Practices" which was held from 11-14 December 1994 at the Food and Agriculture Development Center of the German Foundation for International Development in Feldafing, Germany. The meeting was convened jointly by the Forest Harvesting and Transport Branch of FAO and the Subject Group S3.05, "Forest Operations in the Tropics," a Research Group of the International Union of Forestry Research Organizations (IUFRO).

The objectives of the meeting were twofold:

· to provide information and exchange experience on recently developed guidelines and codes in forest harvesting; and

· to review the FAO Model Code of Forest Harvesting Practice.

In response to the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, and in particular with reference to Agenda 21, Chapter 11, dealing with Combating Deforestation, FAO has organized the Expert Meeting on Forest Practices and developed the FAO Model Code:

· to enhance the protection, sustainable management and conservation of all forests and rehabilitation of the degraded areas; and

· to promote the efficient utilization and assessment to recover the full value of goods and services provided by forests and woodlands.

The information provided in this report and the publication of the FAO Model Code are intended primarily to serve as reference material, to promote harvesting practices that will improve standards of utilization, reduce environmental impacts and ensure that forests are sustained for future generations as well as to improve the economic and social contributions of forestry as a component of sustainable development.

K.H. Schmincke
Forest Products Division
FAO Forestry Department

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