Approaches for the Improvement of the Economic Sustainability of Natural Forest Management in the Tropics
The conservation of tropical forests is of international concern, to which also Germany is committed. To reduce the pace of tropical forest destruction we analyse approaches for a sustainable utilization of remaining natural forests and their rehabilitation – among other countries - in Vietnam, Nepal and Suriname.
International rule systems and German political commitments in the forest sector form the background of our activities. In details these are
These commitments require advice for policy makers. We contribute with research results on a scientific basis.
We develop approaches for the optimization of forest management practices and models for different land-use options with links to market economics. Furthermore we integrate climate protection goals in our approach which contain aspects of income and food security as well as macroeconomics.
We analyse which effects subsistence, communal and concessional utilization of forests have. We identify weak points which challenge for improvement and develop solutions for an improved sustainable forest management practice of natural forests. We apply empiric methods of interviews and surveys as well as forest inventories and stand analyses.
We could demonstrate that it is economically advantageous for a concessionaire to apply low impact harvest methods in tropical lowland forests. Prerequisite is a careful forest inventory with determination of tree coordinates. On this basis optimized skid roads can be planned. We detected a loss of value when no grading of the harvested timber is applied before it is sold. Furthermore we identified a great potential for adding value in the processing chain of wood as approx. 50 % of the processed material is wasted.
When analysing communal forestry we identified positive impacts on forests. Communal-made regulations contribute to the conservation of forests and alleviate the consequences of previous forest degradation. Private forest home-gardens can bridge gaps when scarcity in timber supply occurs. The subsistence utilization of forests plays an important role for local populations with low income possibilities in remote areas. Nevertheless due to a missing market access the contribution to the household income from the trade of timber products is low.
The overall results of the project can be found in a comprehensive publication: Michael Köhl, Thomas Schneider, Prem Neupane, Jutta Lax, Jutta Poker (2014): Approaches for the Improvement of the Economic Sustainability of Natural Forest Management in the Tropics - including REDD+ Mechanism. Published by Institute for World Forestry/Johann Heinrich von Thünen Institute (Editors). Berlin: Rhombos. 352 S.
Further results: Publications, Policy Brief, Ph.D. Theses, M.Sc. and B.Sc. Theses
The project was jointly organized by the University of Hamburg and the former Thünen Institute for World Forestry (Head: Prof. Dr. Michael Köhl).
4.2008 - 9.2013
Project status: finished