Forest Conservation | WWF

Forest Conservation

Geographical location:

Latin America/Caribbean > South America > Peru

Summary

Forests provide essential environmental, social and economic functions, but alarming deforestation rates in the last 3 decades have caused at least half of the Earth's original forest cover to disappear. In response to the global forest crisis, the WWF Peru Programme Office (WWF PPO) is working to save the last significant tracts of remaining and intact humid tropical forest within Peru.

This project includes components which aim to ensure the sustainable management of natural resources (specifically forests) and the effective management of protected areas within Peru, while simultaneously improving local living conditions.

Activities focus primarily on promoting sustainable forest management and voluntary forest certification, expanding forest protected areas and providing locals with the tools and knowledge to sustainably manage their own resources.

Background

The project works towards the establishment and maintenance of viable, representative networks of protected areas in Peru’s threatened and most biologically significant forest regions by 2010.

In addition, it seeks to achieve improved management in 6 million ha of Peru’s forests and 100,000 ha of community forests, through a combination of credible certification and a step-wise approach to improved forest management. This will be achieved by supporting institutional development, strengthening regional working groups, seeking approval of national standards from the Forest Stewardship Council and supporting alliances with the forest business sector to adopt forest certification.

A strong communications campaign to support this work will aim to persuade national and international consumers to purchase exclusively forest certified products.

Finally, by 2020, the programme aims to restore forest goods, services and processes in one landscape of outstanding importance within a priority ecoregion, to regain ecological integrity and enhance human wellbeing.

Objectives

- Support the institutionalization of sustainable forest management in Peru and the application of good management practices at all levels within the country's forestry sector.

- Provide native communities with the capacity to carry out land tenure and titling as well as sustainable forest management activities according to their social and cultural reality.

- Contribute to the reduction of poverty levels of indigenous populations in the Peruvian Amazon through the sustainable management of natural resources.

Solution

- Work in partnership with local, regional and national government, other non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and indigenous federations, among others. Institutional capacity building is essential to the success of this project as well as the participation of locals in the maintenance of protected areas.

- Promote timber processing within specific project areas in order to add value to final products.

- Ensure local involvement in landscape restoration activities. This includes work with communities and with local farmers to analyze current land use practices. This will allow for the introduction of more appropriate conservation practices, including reforestation of native species important for construction and timber, fruit and flower-producing species that attract native wildlife and mellifere species.

- The inclusion of plantations with systems that prevent or reduce soil erosion, improvements in land use systems for grazing, promotion of improved grazing areas, and training in order to provide an added value to main products.

- Awareness raising and training in the prevention and control of forest fires and illegal logging, and the promotion of new activities using existing local resources to generate additional income for local families.

- Increase local, provincial and regional authorities’ awareness regarding their important role in promoting, designing and carrying out land forest restoration initiatives.

Achievement

1. Improved forest management

- During the last 2 years, WWF PPO through its Centro de Desarrollo Forestal (CEDEFOR) project has been able to support 93 general forest management plans (GFMP) covering an approximate total of 2.2 million ha, and has supported the implementation of 159 forest use annual operating plans (AOP) that allow for an annual mobilization of around half a million cubic meters of timber.

- 107 forest enterprises have received assistance with business plans, and have been trained in management and accounting topics.

- The project has contributed to the organization of a total of 32 forest management committees, key entities in the coordination initiatives among forest resource users and in the solution of base conflicts.

2. Financial arrangements

- A programme dealing with the provision of credits to concessionaires was responsible for the liberation of approximately USD 250,000 to 7 enterprises.

- A strategy of integrated forest management in hydrographic basins has been designed, resulting in the selection of 8 basins which cover over 4,000,000 ha and have a production capacity of commercial timber superior to 800,000 m3 annually with a value exceeding USD 100 million, more than 50% of timber produced at the national level each year.

3. Forest certification

- 32 forest concession and chain of custody initiatives have been identified covering a total of 1,132,000 ha, of which 210,000 ha have already been evaluated, 29,000 ha of Brazil nut forest have already been certified as well as 35,000 ha natural forests managed by indigenous communities.

4. Landscape forest restoration

- 106 ha of restoration plots (52.5 reforestation, 15.5 agroforestry and 38 silvipasture).

- 42 nurseries have been implemented by locals, resulting in a total production of 37,637 saplings.

- 94 species of native trees and bushes have been used for reforestation.

- An environmental education, information and communications plan has been elaborated.

- Creation of a Tabaconas Namballe National Sanctuary (TNNS) support committee.

- Inhabitants of landscape restoration project area have participated in capacity building workshops regarding the production of artisan work, coffee cultivation mechanisms for agroforestry systems, compost production, control of burning activities, and preparation of nurseries among others.

- 205 high school students have been trained on restoration practices.

- Children and professors of the Tabaconas School have created nurseries with native plants for the reforestation of 2 ha of the school’s demonstrative parcel (2,300 plants).

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