Colombia: Efforts to improve forest governance gaining momentum


FAO FLEGT Programme members met this month with delegates from Colombia’s Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development (MADS) and the Regional Environmental Authority of Risaralda, CARDER, to assess progress and outcomes of FAO support towards Colombia’s Intersectoral Pact for Legal Timber . The Pact, a voluntary agreement aimed at ensuring that timber harvested, transported, processed, marketed and used derives exclusively from legal sources, is one of the country’s main forest governance initiatives to combat illegal logging. About 72 public and private institutions and civil society organizations signed commitments to reduce illegal forest activity under the current Government. The Pact has also been included in the National Plan of Development of the country (2014-2018) as one of the main tools to reduce deforestation. The FAO FLEGT Programme continues to support work to strengthen the Pact for Legal Timber , including piloting and validating the implementation of the following mechanisms: Responsible Wood Purchasing Guide , which falls under the Sustainable Production and Consumption Policy Framework and seeks to guide Colombians in purchasing legal and sustainable timber; Strengthening tracking and controlling mechanisms by Regional Environmental Authorities with the use of digital android applications such as “cubimaderas” and “especies maderables.”; Recognizing the legal provenance of timber from natural forest and forest industries through the use of protocols for tracking and control of forest products that are harvested, transported, processed and marketed.