Lessons Learned from Community Forestry in Asia and Their Relevance for REDD+: Issues Brief
The Forest Carbon, Markets and Communities (FCMC) Program commissioned four reports - three regional and one global - on lessons learned from decades of community forestry initiatives. This brief summarizes key points from the one on Asia.
The region, it notes, has great cultural diversity, a large array of forest types and many different approaches to community forestry. Several countries, including Indonesia, have large areas of remaining tropical forests, making them particularly relevant to REDD+.
Estimates of indigenous peoples living in forests vary widely around 150 million and estimates of forest dependent peoples in Asia vary widely around 500 million.
In most of Asia, forests have been under state control for decades. Community forest tenure in Asia is usually only granted on a short or limited term basis. Overall, the cash returns from community forestry have generally been modest. Local communities may, however, benefit from improved forest management, and the range of non-monetary social and environmental benefits associated with improved forest management.
The brief notes types of capacity building that can be improved and necessary conditions for scaling up strong community forestry initiatives. Self-initiated forms of community forestry have particularly made significant contributions to maintaining healthy forests. The brief issues recommendations for improving community forest management across the region.
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