What follows is the synthesis report prepared as background document for the Global Workshop on Underlying Causes of Deforestation and Forest Degradation (Costa Rica,18-22 January), under the heading "An overview of the underlying causes identified, similarities and differences and possible ways forward." The process leading to the Costa Rica Workshop involved the preparation of case studies in different regions of the world and their presentation in seven regional and one indigenous peoples' organizations workshops. Presentations provided the basis for discussions in working groups and in plenary, aimed at the identification of the common underlying causes of deforestation and forest degradation, followed by the identification of actors and solutions to address them.
Bulletin Issue 19 – January 1999
GLOBAL WORKSHOP ON UNDERLYING CAUSES
26 January 1999What follows are comments by WRM's International Coordinator on the synthesis report, presentation made at the Global Workshop on January 18th. Before making any comments, it is important to explain how the process leading to this synthesis report -and to this Global Workshop- was implemented. From the start it was decided that the process would be participatory (and stemming from concrete realities), solution-oriented (and not accusatory) and that it would include all regions of the world.
26 January 1999What follows is Mia Siscawati's (Focal Point for Asia) presentation during the final plenary session of the Global Workshop on January 22nd: World forests are in crisis, especially natural and indigenous forests. We do not only face a loss of ecosystems, species and genetic resources of the forests; we also face loss of their ecological functions as well as their social, cultural and spiritual functions. The 1997 and 1998 forest fires, extensive floods, landslides, and other well-publicised natural disasters in several countries, were an example of a long process of deforestation and forest degradation. Floods brought on partly by deforestation have killed thousands of rural Asians in recent years.
26 January 1999Given that the outcome of the workshop resulted in a lengthy document including an important number of recommendations, we have not included it in this bulletin. However, the report is available in the WRM web page (www.wrm.org.uy) in the Underlying causes section (Global Workshop). Most of the documentation produced for and by the regional and indigenous peoples workshops are also available in the same web page.
26 January 1999This edition of the WRM bulletin is entirely focused on the NGO-led process, jointly organized with the government of Costa Rica and UNEP (with additional support and participation from an important number of governments and intergovernmental agencies) to identify and suggest measures to address the underlying causes of deforestation and forest degradation. For years, the WRM had fought against the findings of experts who blamed poverty, demographic pressures, fuelwood consumption and shifting agriculture for most of the deforestation processes occuring in the South. Those same experts highlighted deforestation in the South while concealing similar destructive processes in the North.