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Scaling up forest-based options for planetary crises



Manufacturing of latex from rubber tree (Hevea brasiliensis) in Thailand. Latex is a crucial non-timber forest product. Photograph by Michael Brady/CIFOR-ICRAF

“The world is facing climate change, deforestation, and biodiversity loss,” stated Janne Narakka, the Strategic Planning Committee Chair of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)’s Board of Administrators. “Forests are currently high up on many global agendas: there are many different expectations on them – and on the solutions they could provide.”

He made the feedback at a keynote session throughout the FSC’s Normal Meeting 2021-2022, held on 11 October 2022 in Bali, Indonesia, which got down to discover the central function of forests within the face of those crises and spotlight the work required by establishments like FSC to make sure that forest-based options are deployed as successfully – and equitably – as doable. “With an estimated strong increase in global timber demand, we have to work to expand FSC’s forest management to bring our impact to new areas,” stated Narakka; “but at the same time, it is important to work on new services to respond to the new demands on forests – such as for biodiversity and water purification.”

On that notice, Valentina Lira, the sustainability director of Chilean vineyard Concha y Toro (the second largest vineyard on this planet), shared her firm’s strategy to implementing FSC’s Ecosystem Companies Process (ESP), which permits teams to determine, measure, and confirm the constructive impacts of accountable forest administration. “Forestry is not our business; making wine is our business,” she stated. “So for us, it was a very challenging idea to work with the FSC standard to certify the forest management that we have in the natural forests surrounding our wineries.”

Nonetheless, it was more and more obvious to the corporate that these forests had been offering them with vital companies, resembling regulating the water cycle, stopping erosion, and offering biodiversity that helped with pollination and pest management. So, they signed as much as FSC’s ESP, with nice outcomes. “It was able to provide us not only with protection of the forest, but also a better relationship with the local community,” stated Lira, “and compliance for our commitment to being a [carbon] net-zero company.”

Esther Rohena, the pinnacle of local weather finance firm South Pole’s World Enlargement and Partnerships division, shared a few of her group’s work as a “one stop shop for climate solutions,” which “leverage(s) our finance through the sale of carbon credits and public buyers to projects which are implemented in collaboration with NGOs, local communities, and forest owners.” For Rohena, offering monetary help for implementers to achieve certification is a crucial piece of the puzzle.

Stephen Donofrio, the managing director of Ecosystem Market – a standardized Voluntary Carbon Markets (VCM) end-to-end transparency platform – affirmed the expansion in reputation of those sorts of initiatives. “There’s a demand part of this market that is increasingly seeking what is being called ‘high-integrity credits’,” he stated. “Many buyers consider nature-based projects to be very valuable in terms of the benefits that they provide beyond carbon, as well as the climate benefits,” stated Donofrio, affirming that buyrs are ceaselessly keen to pay extra for these. He additionally highlighted the significance of guaranteeing that Indigenous Peoples are “at the table for fair and equitable revenue-sharing from market-based approaches, and are also respected in terms of their support of biodiversity and the other [non-carbon] benefits that they provide.”

Whereas the significance of forest restoration is extraordinarily obvious at a number of ranges, Michael Brady, a Principal Scientist on the Middle for Worldwide Forestry Analysis – World Agroforestry (CIFOR-ICRAF), warned this isn’t merely about getting timber within the floor. “We coined the phrase ‘planting the wrong tree in the wrong place – and many are left untended’ to express our concern about the overreliance on tree planting, as opposed to tree managing,” he stated.

As such, CIFOR-ICRAF has been working for the reason that Nineties to advertise a strategic forest panorama restoration strategy, boosting governance, supporting communities, selling pure regional regeneration as a restoration technique, and exploring new alternatives for restoration, resembling together with biomass manufacturing for power and livelihoods, and as a part of efforts to scale back hearth and haze.

Lee White, Gabon’s Minister of Water, Forests, the Sea, and Atmosphere, supplied a compelling instance of the necessity to safeguard in opposition to unlawful deforestation as a starting-point for providing any sort of efficient forest-based options. Following the revelation in 2017 of a USD300 million-per-year unlawful forestry trade within the nation, “we had to take drastic action,” stated White.

The President declared that each one forestry operations in Gabon wanted to be FSC-certified by 2022. “We felt that we needed to bring in an international watchdog to validate management practices in order for Gabon to maintain its market share in the future,” he stated.

The federal government can also be engaged on a traceability system that may be sure that QR codes “follow living trees in the forest all the way to destinations outside of Gabon,” stated White. It is usually modernizing its system to have the ability to show that Gabonese timber is authorized, carbon constructive, biodiversity constructive, and socially accountable.

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