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Science and research to halt deforestation (Vol. 2, Issue 3)

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FTA communications


The CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees and Agroforestry (FTA) participated in February in the “Working across sectors to halt deforestation and increase forest area” conference organized by the Collaborative Partnership on Forests. FTA coorganized two sessions with partners including the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO).

The session on the role of science and research showed how science-based innovations have the potential to revolutionize the way forests and landscapes are monitored and managed, thus having the ability to help stop deforestation and sustainably increase forest areas. Read the full article to find out about the panel’s conclusions.

Following that was the Asia-Pacific Rainforest Summit in April, at which FTA was a science partner and saw a number of scientists participating. Coming up soon is the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (SBSTA), on the sidelines of which FTA and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) will hold two consultations. And later on May 11, FTA is supporting a much-anticipated webinar on landscape transformation.

All this shows FTA to be a robust partnership, focused on research for development across a wide range of themes. Read on to learn more about the program’s latest initiatives and results, and please contact us at if you have any questions or comments.

Vincent Gitz, FTA Director

Special feature

The power of science to halt deforestation

imagethumb.jpgScience and research can offer significant contributions to halting deforestation and increasing the area of healthy forests around the world in a sustainable manner. With halting and reversing deforestation seen as key to achieving the SDGs and the objectives of the Paris agreement on climate change, a recent conference, in which FTA participated, discussed ways of meeting these targets in the coming years with various actors and stakeholders.


Agroforestry sites in Vietnam provide lessons for farmland in Bhutan and Nepal

imagethumb.jpgThe steep upland farming areas of Bhutan, Nepal and Vietnam share similar challenges in establishing sustainable agricultural practices that improve livelihoods and the environment. To share knowledge and experience from the steeply sloping landscapes of Northwest Vietnam, government officers from Bhutan and Nepal traveled to the country to explore an array of well-developed agroforestry systems, demonstration sites, plantations and nurseries.

Greater inclusion of women is needed to optimally intensify cocoa value chains

imagethumb.jpgThe valley of the rivers Apurimac, Ene and Montaro (VRAEM), a region of Peru which produces approximately 70 percent of the country’s illicit coca, is now also of importance to cocoa production as governmental agencies, cocoa buyers and development programs have been seeking to help expand and intensify cocoa production. Smallholders who had abandoned their farms after many years of conflict have now returned and are seeking alternatives to cocoa production.

New children’s book teaches the sustainable traditions of West Timorese honey hunters

imagethumb.jpgThis new book about honey harvesting in West Timor, Indonesia, contributes to increasing benefits from small-scale forestry management practices that use forests to support livelihoods while sustainably managing landscapes. The book shows the Olin-Fobia community’s annual tradition of harvesting wild honey from the nearby Mount Mutis Nature Reserve.

Study examines bamboo value chains to support industry growth

imagethumb.jpgDespite a significant contribution to the economy, the bamboo industry in Indonesia remains underdeveloped. In terms of policy, bamboo is also often overlooked, with timber receiving much more attention. More assistance could help to support the industry, which is currently seen as underdeveloped and missing out on opportunities according to this article.

Local wood businesses find better global opportunities with sustainability certification

imagethumb.jpgThe economy of Jepara, Indonesia – almost completely dedicated to wood products – has experienced booms and busts over the decades. The 1998 Asian financial crisis actually opened up its export market, but 2008’s global economic collapse meant declines in exports and a return to reliance on local buyers. Supporting the use of certified and legal wood and improved supply chains is now benefitting the town’s many small- and medium-scale enterprises.

Silviculture techniques help farmers improve income and develop more productive agricultural systems

imagethumb.jpgPlanting timber in agricultural systems is a common practice in Indonesia. Farmers often cultivate timber together with other crops to diversify, increase and stabilize their income. Timber acts as a savings bank, to be harvested when funds are needed. Appropriate silvicultural techniques that ensure the best growth of timber need to be promoted to farmers, according to experts.

What does restoring the world’s forests mean for women’s rights?

imagethumb.jpgAround the world, millions of hectares of land are being reforested as part of global efforts to combat climate change, restore ecological integrity and improve human well-being. But it’s not just a matter of planting trees on empty lands. As in any landscape, the areas where restoration efforts are taking place are overlaid with uses, histories and political dynamics – including different rights and responsibilities for men and women.

Halting deforestation is ‘everyone’s fight’ 

imagethumb.jpgHalting and reversing deforestation are key to achieving the SDGs and the objectives of the Paris agreement on climate change. In particular, Target 15.2 calls for halting deforestation by 2020, while the UN Strategic Plan for Forests adopted in 2017 by the UN General Assembly calls for reversing the loss of forest cover and increasing forest area by 3 percent worldwide by 2030.

Taking stock of ecosystem services in the mountains of southern Asia

imagethumb.jpgMountain forest ecosystems provide a wide range of benefits, not only to local residents, but to those living downstream: from reducing floods to stabilizing slopes and supporting rich biodiversity. Understanding these contributions is key to sustainably managing mountain forest services — but large-scale assessments are still rare, especially in data-poor regions.

Agroforestry offers pathways to sustainable landscape restoration

imagethumb.jpgAgroforestry landscapes cover 1 billion hectares of land worldwide and make a significant contribution to the overall health of the planet. The introduction of trees to farms and landscapes for multiple productive purposes could play a key role in mitigating the impact of climate change. The practice – which can include scattered trees on farmland, intercropping, home gardens and tree crop systems – is growing increasingly popular worldwide.

Banner photo by O. Girard/CIFOR. Special feature and news photos, from top, by: U. Ifansasti/CIFOR; C. Wangmo; T. Blare/ICRAF; N. Sujana/CIFOR; Riyandoko/ICRAF; D. Ramsay/CIFOR; Riyandoko/ICRAF; O. Girard/CIFOR; N. Sujana/CIFOR; N. Sujana/CIFOR; C. Pye-Smith/ICRAF.

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Decision support tools for forest landscape restoration: Current status and future outlook


Creating an appropriate tenure foundation for REDD+: The record to date and prospects for the future


Missing links in the forest-migration nexus: An analysis of trends, literature and data sources

Strengthening social inclusion within oil palm contract farming in the Brazilian Amazon


Secrets of the Mutis Honey Hunters


Informality, global capital, rural development and the environment: Mukula (rosewood) trade between China and Zambia


Corporate commitments to zero deforestation: An evaluation of externality problems and implementation gaps


Estimating water user demand for certification of forest watershed services


Tree-ring record in Ethiopian church forests reveals successive generation differences in growth rates and disturbance events


Secrets of the Mutis Honey Hunters

Playing for keeps: How a simple board game could lead to more sustainable oil palm


Carving a niche in the global market: The woodworkers of Jepara

Restoring landscapes, respecting rights

The returnee: Inside the lives of migrant workers from Nepal

Left behind in Nepal: Shanti’s story

Unpacking migration and gender in Nepal


FAO/FTA Consultations during SBSTA 48
May 2, 2018
Bonn, Germany

Landscape transformation: what does power have to do with it?
May 11, 2018
Online webinar

Global Landscapes Forum (GLF) Investment Case
May 30, 2018
International Finance Corporation (IFC), Washington, DC, United States of America

The CGIAR Research Program on Forests, Trees and Agroforestry (FTA) is the world’s largest research for development program to enhance the role of forests, trees and agroforestry in sustainable development and food security and to address climate change. CIFOR leads FTA in partnership with Bioversity International, CATIE, CIRAD, ICRAF, INBAR and TBI.

We would like to thank all donors who support this work through their contributions to the CGIAR Fund.

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