News

FAO Releases Information Note on Forest Management and REDD

FAO

10 November 2009: The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has released an information note clarifying terminology used in the climate negotiations on reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries (REDD). The note states that the lack of a common understanding of the terms “sustainable management of forests (SMF)” and “sustainable forest management (SFM)” is confusing the debate on the eligibility of activities for incentives under a REDD+ instrument (REDD+ referring to REDD, plus the role of conservation, SMF and enhancement of forest carbon stocks).

The note clarifies that SFM, according to internationally agreed language, is a dynamic and evolving concept that aims to maintain and enhance the economic, social and environmental value of all types of forests, for the benefit of future generations. In the Bali Action Plan, SMF refers to the application of forest management practices for the primary purpose of sustaining constant levels of carbon stocks over time, but the FAO note states that implicit in the term SMF is that other values of the forest should not be disregarded. The note adds that in many places in the negotiation text, “SFM” is used in a way that is inconsistent with internationally accepted language describing SFM. [The information note]