In Good Company 2015: Plantations and combating deforestation – is there a win–win situation?

In September, many high-level influencers are joining FSC’s In Good Company 2015 in Durban, South Africa, to discuss the hot topics in forest product markets.

zoomYou are warmly invited to join us! One of the themes is the role of plantations in the deforestation debate.

Forests are under increasing pressure from more profitable land uses, and clearing for agriculture and pasture is by far the largest cause of global deforestation. According to the ‘WWF Living Forests Report’, up to 170 million hectares of forest could be destroyed by 2030 due to large and small-scale agriculture, unsustainable logging, mining, infrastructure projects, and increased fire incidence and intensity.

How can we make sure that plantations are part of the solution to deforestation and degradation of natural ecosystems?

Together with the goals of zero net deforestation and reduction of forest degradation, the key challenges for the forest products industry are ensuring an increasing supply of forest products, while at the same time decreasing the impact on forests and other natural ecosystems. How can we produce more timber without weakening essential ecosystems in a world where competition for land and water is increasing? Under what circumstances could plantations be part of the solution? A high-level panel at In Good Company 2015 will continue this debate and present some solutions.

Jim Heyes, Principal of the Global Environment Fund (a leading private equity investor in the African forestry sector), will speak at the event. “Africa faces an acute and growing shortage of wood products for local building materials, transmission poles, and energy,” he says. “This has led to unsustainable harvesting of both natural forests and publically owned plantation resources. Well-managed private plantations must play a leading role in filling the supply gap and reducing pressure on natural forests. FSC can be a key player in attracting responsible investment to the sector and enabling environmentally and socially appropriate plantation development.”

Other speakers will include Luis Neves Silva, Manager, New Generation Plantations, WWF International; Edgard Avezum, Commercial Director, Klabin; Michael Peter, Executive Director, Forestry South Africa; Gary Dunning, Executive Director, The Forest Dialogue; and Kim Carstensen, Director General, FSC International.

To take part in this debate, register for In Good Company 2015: