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News release

ITTO Environmental Services projects: Call for nominations

23 October 2008

Assistance with Market Remuneration from Environmental Services Provided by Tropical Forests

The ITTO is currently inviting countries to nominate communities to be considered for the International Tropical Timber Organization’s (ITTO) work programme activity on environmental services. This activity is an approved part of ITTO’s biennial work programme for 2008-2009 and seeks to improve community livelihoods through the development of environmental services schemes. After receiving preliminary feedback from participants at ITTO’s series of regional investment forums held during 2006 and 2007, members of the International Tropical Timber Council decided that ITTO would work with communities in tropical countries to help them develop the necessary skills to create project proposals on environmental services for ITTO’s consideration.

The theme of environmental services has been emerging only in recent years and includes such activities as watershed management, forest management and carbon offsetting. ITTO recognizes that many countries have not had the ability to delve further into the subject of environmental services due to human and financial resource constraints. In response to this perceived need, ITTO is currently undergoing a consultation process to seek countries’ advice on potential communities that might be involved in ITTO’s activity on environmental services.

ITTO producer countries have been asked to nominate five communities from each producer country to be considered for this important activity and have welcomed the nominations before 30 December 2008. The following information will need to be submitted for ITTO’s consideration: the name, location and history of the local community; the reason why the community should be considered for ITTO capacity building activities and how it would benefit from environmental services schemes (including quantitative data, if possible); the current amount of tropical forests (in hectares) managed by or surrounding the local community; other environmental services schemes in or nearby the community; the community’s current local legislation and land tenure arrangements; and the environmental services available in the nominated community (e.g. forests; watersheds; alternative energy generation; carbon credit potential, etc). If you would like to recommend a community for nomination or are from a community that could benefit from an ITTO environmental services project and would like to be considered by your government, please forward the above information to the ITTO member country point of contact in which the community is located as soon as possible.

If a community is successful in being short-listed for consideration, ITTO will contact the relevant producer country to provide further particulars on the selection process and potential future training associated with this ITTO activity. For further information on this activity, please contact Dr. Lauren Flejzor in the Division of Economic Information and Market Intelligence

fax: +81 45 223 1111