Bainbridge Island, WA (PressExposure) August 19, 2011 -- Forestry Research Associates (FRA), a research and analysis consultancy, has called for an increase the number of forest-for-people projects in developing countries.
Center for People and Forests' outgoing executive director, Dr Yam Malla has stated that forest-for-people initiatives are proving to be a success in many developing countries.
As a means of achieving sustainable forestry management, forest-for-people projects are extremely effective, according to Dr Malla, who was speaking at last week's Regional Forum for People and Forests held in Bangkok.
He stated, "Over the years, community forestry has proved itself to be one of the most appropriate and effective strategies for achieving sustainable forest management.
"Forests-for-people initiatives have made forestry a dynamic and more interesting field of study and community forestry is ready to take a second quantum leap," he added.
FRA's analysis partner, Peter Collins explained, "Community forestry projects offer a brilliant solution for sustainable forest management in developing countries as they care for a natural resource that is at the centre of life in many of these countries."
He added, "As a way to protect forests, while offering locals social and economic benefits, community forestry is hard to beat."
The Asian region is thought to be particularly benefiting from this community-minded approach to forestry management, with the Chinese government handing over swathes of land to community collectives. Dr Malla points out that the projects have proved that a growing population does not have to mean depleting forests and with the right sustainable management techniques, people can enjoy the benefits of more forestry products, more forests and more infrastructure.
Mr Collins added that many other sustainable forestry projects are benefiting emerging economies, such as the non-native plantation projects run by Greenwood Management in Brazil. The timber grown on the plantations is perfect for use in the international furniture industry and the growing Brazilian and Asian steel sectors. Meanwhile, the use of these timbers helps to protect the native forests for the local people and native species to enjoy.