Vietnam is increasing its forest area by one percent every year. In Finland, one of the leading countries of sustainable forest management, destruction of forests is expressly prohibited by law. More than 90 percent of the sellers of forest produce are women. Russia’s far east is the ground of one tenth of the world’s forests that are threatened by illegal logging.
These are only some of the facts included short, informative videos by the FAO forestry communication team. Beautiful footage and discreet background music make the documentaries appealing to watch and the information easy to take in. The films are not longer than 11 minutes long and available on youtube. Click on the links below to watch.
This film highlights how Finland is setting an example in sustainable forest management and how the many and varied innovations emerging from Finland’s forestry sector can help, not only Finland, but the rest of Europe, in achieving the goal of greening their economies. Wood, unlike fossil fuels, is a renewable resource, because trees regrow as the result of seed sowing, replanting and natural regeneration. Finland’s work in developing innovative wood products, is demonstrating how wood can be used as a greener option not only in traditional industries such as construction and pulp and paper production but in fields as broad as energy, pharmaceuticals and medicine.
An effort is under way worldwide to better manage our planet’s forest resources and better enhance their role in mitigating climate change. Forest loss and degradation in developing countries account for nearly 20% of global greenhouse gas emissions. Monitoring and reducing these emissions has been the key goal for the international community in climate change negotiations. Viet Nam is one example of a country that’s taking important steps to manage and expand its forest resources. Previous loss of forested areas has been reversed and the country is now increasing forest area by about 1% every year.
A vibrant forestry industry can mean a brighter future for nations that pursue modern, sustainable forestry management practices: more and better jobs; lower environmental impact; a carbon neutral industry; and a renewable, sustainable approach to economic development. Viet Nam is receiving help to achieve these very goals from Finland’s government and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. In March 2011, these partners launched Vietnam’s National Forest Assessment program, or NFA, to establish an up-to-date and accurate means of assessing the state of Viet Nam’s forest resources. Data on forest biodiversity, environmental carbon stock of the forest, and information on social, economic and other factors related to forest governance will enable Viet Nam’s policymakers to plan for more sustainable forest management.
Forests provide an estimated one billion people globally with nutritious foods. Their products are consumed directly by people living in and around forests and are also sold, generating income for rural populations. In this way, forests and trees on farms make a major contribution to global food security. However, they have often been given little priority in national policymaking related to food security. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, emphasizes the importance of forests and argues that in the light of the Milliennium Development Goal to reduce hunger by half by 2015, the contribution made by forests and trees to food security and nutrition deserves urgent consideration.
The forests of Russia’s Far East play a crucial role in stabilizing global climate and may largely contribute to the global wood products market. The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) have joined forces to promote viable forestry investment and innovation in the region based on sustainable use of forest resources.
Deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries account for nearly 20% of green house gas emissions worldwide, which is why estimating and reducing these emissions has become a key goal for the international community as the Rio+20 conference on sustainable development in June draws closer. One country attempting to do just that is Tanzania, currently in the process of drawing up a comprehensive inventory of its forests to help the East African country better manage its natural resources. More than a third of Tanzania is forested, but almost 1% of that forest is being lost annually. The inventory will measure how much carbon is stored within Tanzania’s forests and will help the country to understand the role it can play in mitigating climate change.
The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is in Tanzania, where climate change is taking a toll on local populations. FAO-backed initiatives are making it easier for farmers and families to produce crop varieties that grow in dry conditions. Plus, new soil methods are increasing production and energy-saving stoves are helping people to survive and to thrive.
In a region being heavily hit by climate change and experiencing population growth that’s putting pressure on precious food and water resources, the need to ensure the future of these forests and the services they provide is more urgent than ever.
Almost half of Panama is covered by rich forests. By sustainably managing these forests the opportunities for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD+) are huge. This video, commissioned by FAO as part of the UN-REDD Programme, explores how different actors — including indigenous groups and environmental authorities — are actively engaged in unearthing these vital resources.