Many forests – in Africa and elsewhere – were, and still are, mismanaged. At the Rio UN-summit in 1992 discussions were intensive whether or not a Forest Convention could positively change that situation. The RIO-result was three conventions, on Climate, Desertification and Biodiversity, and a bunch of Forest Principles, later discussed by the UN Forest Forum with meager practical results.
Soon after the Rio Summit the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) concept for certification was launched and discussions were initiated “all over”. In some parts of the tropics, where great forest management problems were obvious, the FSC certification was successively adopted.
Normally, in the tropics, governments are the legal owners of land, local people are quite involved in and dependent on the forest resources and forest industries are on long term lease often carrying out logging and secondary forestry activities. Not least in Africa this is the situation, why forest certification according to the FSC-concept – trying to merge economical/ecological/cultural interests into Sustainable Forest Management – can be an important way forward. Parallel to FSC, mostly in the developed world, the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) was created.
So far, some 15 % of the world’s forests are certified according to the FSC and the PEFC systems together, but in Africa only 1 % of the forests are certified, all by FSC. This seminar will discuss how to develop African forestry by expanding and popularizing the certification ideas.
Key note will be given by Professor Demel Teketay, new International Fellow of the Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry (KSLA), who has described the Forest Certification situation in Africa on behalf of the Africa Forest Forum.
Moderator: Prof. em. Lisa Sennerby Forsse, president of KSLA.
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