Forests again high on the agenda – really forests? As a result of the growing concern about climate change, forests appear to be once again high on the international agenda, particularly in relation with their role as carbon reservoirs. There is broad agreement that forests can help to either mitigate –if conserved- or worsen –if destroyed- the looming danger of climate change. However: is it all really about forests?
Issue 147 – October 2009
30 October 2009
WORLD FORESTRY CONGRESS
30 October 2009The Thirteenth World Forestry Congress (WFC) took place in Buenos Aires, Argentina from 18 to 23 October. The history of these congresses started in 1926 in Rome. They are meetings that take place every six years in different host countries, attended by representatives of governments, civil society, the private corporate sector and the academic world.
30 October 2009The World Forestry Congress taking place in Buenos Aires is viewed as an excellent business opportunity by the Argentine forestry sector.
TREE PLANTATIONS AND WATER
30 October 2009Something extremely interesting is currently happening in Kenya. On the one hand, the country’s Environment Minister, John Michuki, has ordered the uprooting of eucalyptus trees from wetlands and banned their planting along rivers and watersheds. At the same time, well known Nobel Prize winner Wangari Maathai is calling for a ban on planting alien species and particularly eucalyptus, while experts from the Kenyan-based International Centre for Research in Agroforestry (ICRAF) raise the alarm on the “thirsty” nature of eucalyptus. When planting eucalyptus was good
30 October 2009In every case where large scale fast-growth tree monocultures are established water resources either diminish substantially or disappear entirely, mainly due to the high water intake of fast-growth alien tree species. Wells, wetlands, streams and even rivers dry up. The local affected communities give testimony of that. WRM has produced the power point presentation “Tree plantations and depletion of water resources” which is a compilation of testimonies from people all around the world, providing more than sufficient evidence about the direct relationship between plantation expansion and depletion of water resources. For us, they are the true experts from whom we can all learn.
30 October 2009Uruguay and the Republic of Korea have recently signed an Agreement for Investment Promotion and Protection which, according to Uruguayan government authorities establishes a framework for Korean investment in Uruguay. From past experience in Uruguay, the establishment of a framework for investment in this country may mean reducing or eliminating all taxation, granting of foreign trade zone permits and all kinds of support to the company’s enterprises.
30 October 2009World demand for paper and paperboard is expected to grow by 2% to 3% annually in the long term, with significant growth potential for Asia and Eastern Europe - India, China and Russia in particular. Paper pulp exports from Latin America from lands converted into monoculture tree plantations, so called “green deserts”, are expected to grow by 70% between 2000 and 2010.