Formalizing artisanal logging in Central Africa - CIFOR
Central Africa’s national and regional timber markets are booming. Across the region, rapid population growth, urbanization and economic development are driving an increase in domestic demand for sawn timber, which in many countries is already more important in volume than demand for industrial timber for export.
However, consumers’ purchasing power remains weak, and in general they lack interest in the origin of the timber they buy – two important considerations that contribute to the prevailing informality of local markets. Domestic demand is mostly met by artisanal loggers, who are quite well organized, yet operate outside of existing legal frameworks.
The informal logging sector creates many jobs and generates significant revenues in both rural and urban areas. In Cameroon, for instance, chainsaw milling provides 45,000 direct jobs and generates more than 20 billion FCFA ($33 million) in revenues, according to a study led by the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR). But these jobs are precarious. Because small-scale timber producers lack legal protection, they have irregular incomes and their activities are vulnerable to corruption and authorities’ abuse.
According to Guillaume Lescuyer, a scientist with the French Agricultural Research Center for International Development (CIRAD) and an associate researcher with CIFOR, in this situation informality creates two main problems: first, it does not allow producers to improve their activities to make them more sustainable and profitable; and second, it contributes very little to government revenues.
“The sustainable use of forest resources should become a driver of development in Central Africa, but informality hinders economic growth and limits the potential benefits for both loggers and the government,” he added.
Furthermore, the status quo means that informal logging is leading to widespread deforestation and forest degradation, according to Richard Eba’a Atyi, CIFOR regional coordinator for Central Africa.
“Small-scale timber production is largely neglected by existing forest governance, which is designed to meet the needs of the industrial sector,” he said. “This situation makes it difficult to adopt policies that can seriously reduce the environmental impact of artisanal logging. Unless we bring the sector to light, it will be difficult to make it more sustainable.”
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Nancy Karigithu is Kenya’s Ambassador and Special Envoy for Shipping and the Blue Economy. In an interview, she explained how the maritime sector can reduce pollution, rein in carbon emissions, and combat wildlife trafficking on a global scale.
Patricia Zurita is CEO of BirdLife International, a leading conservation organization that works with 115 national partner organizations and 13 million members to protect birds and their habitats worldwide. In an interview marking BirdLife’s 100th anniversary, she shared her vision for how the world can create a healthy environment for healthy societies in the coming century.
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On the occasion of the International Day of the World's Indigenous Peoples, 9 August 2022, we reflect on the important role of indigenous women in the preservation and the transmission of traditional knowledge.
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From 19 September to 20 November 2022, learn to develop a step-by-step ecosystem restoration plan and apply effective restoration solutions in your national and sub-national context. Now is the time to restore our damaged ecosystems. Join a FREE MOOC on Ecosystem Restoration on the Learning for Nature platform.
We, the representatives of Central African civil society who participated in-person and virtually in the 19th Meeting of Parties of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP), which was organized by the Federal Republic of Germany and took place from 5 to 8 July, 2022, in Libreville, Republic of Gabon, came together on 6 July 2022, as part of a strategic workshop of civil society organizations working to ensure effective management of natural resources in Congo Basin countries…
Berlin, 12th September 2022, the International Bamboo and Rattan Organization (INBAR), has officially joined the 124 members of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP). INBAR has submitted its application and consented to the CBFP members’ cooperation framework to promote sustainable management of forest ecosystems in Central Africa.
Please download the recommendations, conclusions, messages coming out of the deliberations of Streams 1a, 1b, 2 and 3, Technical Segment of the MOP 19 of the CBFP of Libreville towards sustainable development for Central Africa’s countries, people, forests and biodiversity...These conclusions also serve as a roadmap for the partners to implement the "Declaration of commitment of COMIFAC Member States to the forests of Central Africa and call for equitable financing" and the “Joint Declaration of the Congo Basin donors of COP26”…
Please kindly consult the main conclusions of the two side events organised by CIFOR and USFS in the margins of CBFP MOP 19 on: Slot 1: Current scientific activities on peatlands (and other wetlands) in the Congo Basin and Slot 2: Early responses to protect and manage peatlands in the Congo Basin.
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Participants at the 2022 World Water Week, which convened against the backdrop of the flooding in Pakistan, the food crisis in Africa, and the drying rivers of Europe, highlighted the need for investments and political will to implement available water solutions.
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Delegates to the fourth session of the Intersessional Process for Considering the Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM) and the Sound Management of Chemicals and Waste Beyond 2020 (IP4) advanced their work on the outline for a future global policy framework to promote chemical safety.
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The Binational Supervisory and Arbitration Committee (CBSA), on the Cooperation Agreement between Cameroon and Chad for the concerted management of the Bouba Ndjidda and Séna Oura cross-border protected area complex, has held its second session at the invitation of Mr. Jules Doret NDONGO, Minister of Forests and Wildlife of Cameroon and Current President of CBSA. Kindly download the documents....
The Climate Focus side event, entitled “The Forest Declaration Assessment - How to achieve the 2030 goals in the Congo Basin” took place on 5 July 2022 during the 19th Meeting of Parties of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership. Following a brief overview of the project, five regional experts took the floor in a string of presentations on a variety of forestry-related topics.