Large-scale, intensively-managed and even-aged tree monocultures for timber production have been expanding onto communities’ fertile lands. They have destroyed forests and grasslands, especially in Latin America, Asia, and East and Southern Africa. The species used are exotic and fast-growing. They include varieties of eucalyptus, pine and teak trees.
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Since the native vegetation that surrounded Quito was destroyed to make way for eucalyptus and pine plantations, the forest fires that the city faces year after year have been intensifying.
In 1989, there was a war in the valley of Lila, Portugal. Hundreds of people gathered to destroy 200 hectares of eucalyptus, fearing that the trees would rob them of their water and bring fire.
In 2017, the Finnish company UPM signed a contract with the Uruguayan government to establish a third mega pulp mill. The project is subject to exorbitant conditions imposed by the multinational.
On how pulp and paper companies are expanding in these territories while neutralizing community resistance in a process in which the population ends up economically and symbolically dependent on the companies.
Green Resources S.A., a company with mostly Norwegian capital, is considered to be the largest tree plantation company in Africa. The reality on the ground reveals serious land conflicts between the company and local communities, in Mozambique, Uganda and Tanzania. This article reflects the situation in Mozambique.
Industrial tree plantation projects in Mozambique are gaining more and more ground in processes of land acquisition and dispute. The Portuguese company, Portucel, has a “reforestation” plan through 2026 that aims to cover 356 thousand hectares.
This article gives an overview on the industrial tree plantation expansion threat in eastern and southern African countries, its external drivers, as well as the challenges this expansion presents to affected communities struggling to defend their land and livelihoods.