Forest Resources Assessment WP 79

Definitions Related to Planted Forests

Jim Carle and Peter Holmgren
October, 2003

The Forest Resources Assessment Programme

Forests are crucial for the well-being of humanity. They provide foundations for life on earth through ecological functions, by regulating the climate and water resources, and by serving as habitats for plants and animals. Forests also furnish a wide range of essential goods such as wood, food, fodder and medicines, in addition to opportunities for recreation, spiritual renewal and other services.

Today, forests are under pressure from expanding human populations, which frequently leads to the conversion or degradation of forests into unsustainable forms of land use. When forests are lost or severely degraded, their capacity to function as regulators of the environment is also lost, increasing flood and erosion hazards, reducing soil fertility, and contributing to the loss of plant and animal life. As a result, the sustainable provision of goods and services from forests is jeopardized.

FAO, at the request of the member nations and the world community, regularly monitors the world’s forests through the Forest Resources Assessment Programme. The next report, the Global Forest Resources Assessment 2000 (FRA 2000), will review the forest situation by the end of the millennium. FRA 2000 will include country-level information based on existing forest inventory data, regional investigations of land-cover change processes, and a number of global studies focusing on the interaction between people and forests. The FRA 2000 report will be made public and distributed on the world wide web in the year 2000.

The Forest Resources Assessment Programme is organized under the Forest Resources Division (FOR) at FAO headquarters in Rome. Contact persons are:


The Forest Resources Assessment (FRA) Working Paper Series is designed to reflect the activities and progress of the FRA Programme of FAO. Working Papers are not authoritative information sources – they do not reflect the official position of FAO and should not be used for official purposes. Please refer to the FAO forestry website ( ) for access to official information.

The FRA Working Paper Series provides an important forum for the rapid release of preliminary FRA 2000 findings needed for validation and to facilitate the final development of an official quality-controlled FRA 2000 information set. Should users find any errors in the documents or would like to provide comments for improving their quality they should contact Peter Holmgren at [email protected].



Definitions Related to Planted Forests

1.0 Introduction
1.1 Difficulty in Definition
1.2 Emerging Logic
1.3 Scale of Plantation Forest Resources

2.0 Trends Over Recent Decades
2.1 FAO World Symposium on Man-made Forests
2.2 International Expert Consultation, Santiago, Chile
2.3 Forest Resources Assessments 1980, 1990 and 2000

3.0 Harmonization of Forestry Related Definitions
3.1 Background
3.2 Needs and Tools for Harmonization
3.3 Status of Harmonization
3.4 Managed and Unmanaged Forests, Forest Condition

4.0 The Way Forward
4.1 Basis for Future Global Forest Resources Assessment
4.2 Designation of Forest Management Objective
4.3 Forest Characteristics
4.4 Support for the Approach

5.0 Conclusions


Forest Resources Assessment (FRA) Working Papers

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