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Putting the pieces together

A worker assembles a wooden chair at Industrias del Machihembrado Daniella in Pucallpa, Peru. Photo: E. Sangama

A worker assembles a wooden chair at Industrias del Machihembrado Daniella in Pucallpa, Peru. Photo: E. Sangama

Sustainable forestry has much to offer at all scales, from the household to the planetary. Certain non-renewable resources will become scarcer in coming decades, but the demand for materials is likely to continue to escalate. There could be a resources crunch—but forestry can help avert this while also providing crucial environmental services.

In this edition, ITTO Executive Director Dr Gerhard Dieterle (page 3) sets out his argument for viewing forest products in the same way as food—that is, as essential commodities. The world is going to need a greatly increased supply of forest products in coming decades, including as substitutes for non-renewable materials and fossil energy. Dr Dieterle believes this need can be harnessed by demand-side measures to incentivize forest producers to manage their forests sustainably. ITTO is well placed, he says, to assist its member countries in this, given its broad experience in field projects and its long-running role in policy development.

Pulong Tau buffer zone: ecosystem, biodiversity and people a new ITTO project publication

This technical report describes the results of several studies conducted under ITTO project PD 635/12 Rev.2 (F): “Buffer zone management for Pulong Tau National Park with involvement of local communities in Sarawak, Malaysia”. The project demonstrated the crucial role that buffer zones can play in providing additional safeguards for core protected areas and securing a resource base for local community use. In this approach the project complemented previous projects in Sarawak focused on biodiversity conservation and livelihood enhancement inside protected areas. The project is the culmination of a long and fruitful collaboration on forestry and biodiversity conservation between Sarawak and ITTO which started in the late 1980s, and this report will further contribute to dialogue on the roles of sustainably managed buffer zones in safeguarding unique protected forest landscapes in the tropics.

ITTO and Honduras sign project agreement on lesser-used timber species

ITTO and the Honduran government signed an agreement on the implementation of a project to improve the silviculture, marketing and use of 12 lesser-used timber species abundant in the Honduran Caribbean on Monday, the 16th April 2018. The aim of the project is to shift the forest sector away from traditional selective logging and promote sustainable forest management covering a broader range of tree species.

Bamboo treatment facility opens in Indonesia

A new bamboo treatment facility in East Nusa Tenggara Province, Indonesia, will help local communities boost incomes by adding value to their bamboo products. The facility, which was developed with ITTO’s technical and financial support, will increase the longevity of bamboo products using a non-chemical, environmentally friendly preservation treatment.

Investments in SFM, reforestation and restoration crucial for green economic development, says Executive Director

Massive investments are needed in the tropics in sustainable forest management (SFM), reforestation and forest restoration to efficiently cover the looming supply gap of timber and other harvested wood products —which could otherwise rise to several billion cubic meters per year by 2050— and to grow the green economy, according to ITTO Executive Director, Dr Gerhard Dieterle, speaking at a high-level forum as part of the Conference on Forest Rehabilitation in the Asia-Pacific Region underway in Beijing, China.

“SFM, efficient timber production, and a transparent and equitable timber trade are key to the development of green economies, conserving the world’s remaining tropical forests, and ensuring the ongoing provision of public goods and services. Moreover, investments in forestry would also open up opportunities for green economic growth and industrialization in other sectors”, said Dieterle.

Celebrating the International Day of Forests: Tropical forests and sustainable cities

Forests provide immense benefits to cities—but are often taken for granted. Forests in and near urban areas cool the air through shading and evapotranspiration; store carbon; remove air pollutants; reduce flooding; assist in food, energy and water security; provide timber for construction and household items; wood for cooking and heating; conserve biodiversity; and improve the physical and mental health of citizens. If you live in a city, take a close look at the trees around you to discover the many services and products they provide.

Every year on 21 March the world celebrates the International Day of Forests, and this year’s theme is “forests and sustainable cities”. There is abundant evidence that sustainably managed urban and peri-urban trees and forests greatly improve quality of life in cities. More than half the world’s population lives in cities today, and this proportion is set to grow in coming years, including in the tropics. Urban and peri-urban forestry, therefore, is crucial for our wellbeing.

ITTO is marking the International Day of Forests with a new infographic illustrating the benefits that tropical forests provide cities. We invite you to share this infographic to raise awareness of the importance of sustainably managing forests in our cities—in the tropics and elsewhere.


Ozone and Plant Ecosystem
21–25 May 2018, Florence, Italy
ATIBT General Assembly
29 May 2018, Nantes, France
FOREST EUROPE workshop: Enhancing the Long-term Competitiveness of the Forest Sector in a Green Economy: policies for forest-based bioeconomy in Europe
29 May 2018, Brussels, Belgium
The 3rd Global Landscape Forum Investment Case Symposium
30 May 2018, Washington, D.C., USA
Biomass Expo 2018
30 May–1 June 2018, Tokyo, Japan
Carrefour International du Bois
30 May–1 June 2018, Nantes, France