Foresters concerned over panel decision

  • sustainable forest management
- POST REPORT, Kathmandu
Foresters concerned over panel decision

Dec 4, 2014-

Nepal Foresters’ Association (NFA), an umbrella organisation of foresters’ working across the country, on Thursday expressed its reservation over a parliamentary committee’s decision to stop ongoing activities on scientific forest management in the country.

During a meeting of the parliamentary committee on Environment Protection held early this week, lawmakers had expressed dissatisfaction over the implementation of the scientific forest management stating that the practice is encouraging illegal logging by authorities involved. The committee then directed the Ministry of Forests and Soil Conservation to halt all related activities being conducted under the sustainable forest management that basically identifies the use of forest products by promoting community forest-based enterprises to improve the livelihoods of communities dependent on forest resources.

The Forests and Soil Conservation Ministry in its programmes formulated in 2013-2014 has prioritised the concept of sustainable forest management that aims to transform from the purely conservation-based approach to a participatory management including the use of forest products. However, according to a team of lawmakers who paid a visit to a community forestry in Kailali found that harvesting of old-growth trees were being practised in the name of sustainable forest management.

In its statement, the NFA has mentioned that three basic principles including conservation, protection and utilisation have been incorporated while sustainably managing forests.

“In order to make the forestry sector productive and help improve livelihoods of communities, sustainable forest management is a need of the today’s conservation model,” said Subash Chandra Devkota, secretary at the NFA.

The decision to halt ongoing activities by the ministry and other concerned partners in promoting participatory forest management was taken without consulting experts, he added. “We urge the committee to take back the decision at the earliest,” the NFA said.

Published: 05-12-2014 09:12

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