Los bosques de México en el Congreso Forestal Mundial

Bosque en la Sierra Juárez de Oaxaca.

Bosque en la Sierra Juárez de Oaxaca.

México es un país que gusta a mucha gente. Con solo decir que vienes de este país las personas quieren practicar las palabras que saben del “español mexicano” pues incluso a los hispano hablantes les gustan nuestra forma de hablar.

Por eso no es de extrañar que a la sesión de México y sus experiencias en el manejo sustentable tuviera tan buena audiencia.

Continue reading

Deforestation-free: An important step toward full sustainability

ZanzibarDecKenya_watermarked

On Monday here at the World Forestry Congress, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) released its latest assessment of the state of the planet’s forests. While the global rate of deforestation has slowed, it remains unacceptably high in many tropical regions.

The Sustainable Development Goals, to be agreed next month at the United Nations, call for a halt to deforestation by 2020. The FAO Global Forest Resources Assessment confirms we need to work faster and smarter to get anywhere near this target by 2020.

Continue reading

14th World Forestry Congress – Moving from ‘tree hugging’ to sustainable forestry management

Children play at Batang Buat river, Lubuk Beringin village, Indonesia.

Children play at Batang Buat river, Lubuk Beringin village, Indonesia.

Delegates attending the 14th World Forestry Congress will seek tangible solutions over the next two days to the global challenge of feeding a growing human population – including a burgeoning, consumptive middle-class – while limiting the extent of climate change and environmental degradation.

One of the major trends that have emerged over the opening three days of the gathering has concerned the sustainable use of forest resources.

Continue reading

Interview with Dr. Marjana Westergren: Forest Scientist

Dr Westergren (resized)

Dr. Marjana Westergren, a researcher at the Slovenian Forestry Institute

Dr. Marjana Westergren is a researcher at the Slovenian Forestry Institute, working in population and landscape genetics, management and conservation of forest genetic resources, and adaptation of forest tree populations.

Our social media reporter Boris Rantaša caught up with her ahead of her session on forest genetic monitoring at the EUFORINNO Workshop (9.9.2015, 19:45, Hall 3A).

What is it like to be a scientist?

For me, it’s really nice to be a scientist, because you get to find out new things. The best thing about it is when you analyze the data, see the results, interpret them and see, ‘this is something that I figured out, and my colleagues have figured out with me and we actually have done this!’ and this might help somebody right now or in the future. It’s a really rewarding feeling and it makes you [keep going].

Continue reading

Youth play their part in conserving forests in Africa

Indigenous afrotemperate forest growing in a river valley. Western Cape South Africa

Indigenous forest in Western Cape, South Africa

Advocating forestry and conservation may sound boring to many young people who often lack ambition and know nothing but the latest hip-hop songs or latest trends in fashion. However, for Eric Ogallo from Kenya and Kiki Tassi from Togo, it is a different story. The two young men teach rural communities how to conserve their forests. They both attended the World Forestry Congress in Durban this week.

Twenty-five year old Ogallo is part of a youth-led non-governmental organization working in the forests of the central highlands of Kenya. “We want to rehabilitate the area by using the youth and their innovations, so that they can create solutions to livelihoods and forestry management issues,” he said.

Continue reading

Knowledge about our forests disappears as fast as the forests themselves

5380588889_6f3d69660e_o

When I as was a young child back in the 1960s, my parents, indeed the people of my village, had knowledge about protecting the forest and the surrounding environment. I am not sure where they acquired this knowledge. Certainly there was little, if any, talk about “caring for the forest” and I cannot recall any campaigns about mitigating deforestation or protecting our environment. “Climate change” was not even a concept. However, it was simply an accepted, common practice that everybody has responsibility for taking care of the environment in which we lived.

Continue reading

Over to Hazel! Live from the Working on Fire Media Tour…

S1150009[1]

Working On Fire tour

The Working on Fire tour took place on September 9, 2015 in Howick, North of Pietermaritzburg.  It was conducted by Tim Sidey, a National Operations Manager for The “Working on Fire” tour

As we were driving past the Marrianhill area in Durban, Tim Sidey showed us dead eucalyptus trees. They were poisoned by the Working on Fire team because eucalyptus is an alien invasive species. The poison kills the tree standing up, so it does not need to be harvested, saving on labour and fuel. He also explained how the Working on Fire team poisons invasive trees in high mountaneous areas, using rope access.

Continue reading

Communities, Forests and Fire Management

Eshowe awareness – look at the risks.

Wildfires are the scourge of South African rural communities and costs the economy billions of rand each year. Working on Fire (WoF) is a government-funded, job-creation programme focusing on Integrated Fire Management. WoF fire fighters are recruited from marginalised communities and trained in fire awareness and education, prevention and fire suppression skills.

They form veld and forest fire fighting ground crews, stationed at bases around the country.

Zanele Nxumalo, National Community Fire Awareness Coordinator, reports on the Working on Fire Cafe’ held on day 2 of the World Forestry Congress.

“Communities taking ownership of fire management is the key to reducing the number of unwanted fires,” says Working on Fire, the South African Government’s leading programme in Integrated Fire Management (IFM)”.

Continue reading