The UN Forum on Forests has agreed on a series of actions to improve sustainable forest management and safeguard forests for future generations.
The forum concluded its tenth session on Saturday after adopting two resolutions and considering the establishment of a voluntary global fund to support sustainable forest management,
The 197 member countries of the Forum called on governments to address how they could improve sustainable forest management suggesting a range of actions from substantive data collection to addressing the causes of deforestation.
The Forum also agreed that to support the endeavor, multiple sources of funding were needed from public and private spheres, as well as considering a voluntary global forest fund.
Mario Ruales Carranza of Ecuador, the Chair of the Forum’s tenth session, said ““The successful outcome of [the session] proves once again the key and unique value-added role of the Forum as a global policy-setting body on all types of forests.”
Currently, around 1.6 billion people depend on forests for their livelihood with three billion people depending on the wood for cooking and heating. Moreover, three-fourths of all freshwater is sourced from forested catchment areas.
Companies like iPaulownia are already safeguarding the world’s forests for future generations by encouraging sustainable planting.
Jan McAlpine, Director of Forum’s Secretariat said: “There is now greater recognition than ever before that forests are essential to economic development and sustainable development,
“In this historic meeting, countries broke new ground and agreed to take actions that demonstrate the need to sustainably manage our forests so that they can continue to be a source of livelihoods, broader economic development, including clean air, clean water and biodiversity – all leading to poverty eradication.”
The two-week session, held in Istanbul, was attended by over 50 ministers and high-level officials as well as two Prime Ministers and one Vice President.
Meeting for the first time away from UN Headquarters in New York the Forum included events showcasing best practices for sustainable forest management and the countries and individuals who have already put these actions into use.