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TOPIC: Go-REDD+#23: REDD+ and the fundamentals of forest management science: Is sustainability ever possible?

Go-REDD+#23: REDD+ and the fundamentals of forest management science: Is sustainability ever possible? 9 years 3 months ago #417

Barbara Zimmerman and Cyril Kormos question whether timber extraction from tropical forests can be managed sustainably. If the answer is 'no', then the implications for REDD+ are dire. Zimmerman and Kormos revisit questions of SFM in relation to REDD+ elements and practices, and conclude that 'industrial scale' SFM is unsuitable as an element of national REDD+ strategies. However, they also conclude that SFM at the 'local-community scale' is indeed possible.

In a critical response to the original article, Plinio Sist and colleagues point out some flaws in these conclusions. Firstly, the categories of 'industrial scale' and 'community scale' are not well-defined. Secondly, logged forests can indeed recover, carbon stock and biodiversity benefits, with appropriate post-harvest management. Thirdly, saying that entire tropical timber industry as a lost cause, rather than incentivizing improved practice, is likely to undermine conservation efforts.

For forest managers, the principles of SFM embody best practice that "Sustainable forest management as a dynamic and evolving concept aims to maintain and enhance the economic, social and environmental value of all types of forests, for the benefit of present and future generations." However, misuse of the term by some tropical forest managers has led to association of 'SFM' with poor practice. In response to Sist, Zimmerman pointed out that logging in tropical forests under 'presently mandated protocols' does indeed lead to resource depletion. These protocols or codes of practice are not followed, in the vast majority of cases. In fact, most operators are not even aware of them.

REDD+ has reopened old fault lines in the debate over SFM. By introducing the term 'Sustainable Management of Forests' (SMF), REDD+ negotiators had hoped to bypass the controversy. Efforts towards sustainability in forest management practices should surely be encouraged, whatever terminology we use. Research into Reduced Impact Logging (RIL) measures, and their impacts on carbon stocks, biodiversity and harvesting costs indicates that REDD+ could potentially incentivize such efforts. To read the full Go-REDD+ article, click here.

Reply Topic: Go-REDD+#23: REDD+ and the fundamentals of forest management science: Is sustainability ever possible? - UN-REDD Discussion Forum - UN-REDD Programme Collaborative Online Workspace 2 weeks 4 days ago #7713

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