Nadine Block, Senior Director of Government Outreach, discusses International Year of Forests.
Earlier this month the United Nations launched International Year of Forests. A variety of leaders and stakeholders assembled to discuss everything from forest communities to forest development.
Forests mean so many different things to different people, and 2011 is a great time to step back and appreciate all the benefits we get from the land. Worldwide, we depend on forests for culture, conservation, tourism, products and more. The UN asserts 1.6 billion people across the globe depend on forests for their subsistence or for their livelihoods. Jan McAlpine, Director of the UN Forum on Forests, recently noted in an interview with the Society of American Foresters that, in fact, “more than seven billion people – the world’s entire population – rely on forests.” She went on to say that International Year of Forests is “an open door for U.S. foresters… to tell a positive story about forests.”
At SFI, we want to take this opportunity of amplified forest awareness to celebrate the accomplishments of our conservation and community partners and actions they are all executing to drive forward improved forest management. Improving wildlife habitat management, avoiding controversial fiber sources and assisting local communities through low-income green building projects are just some of the initiatives moving forward. Additionally, we will continue to drive understanding about the important role forest certification plays in North America and globally. With only 10 percent of the world’s forests certified, it is imperative that we come together to increase that number and support responsible forestry. Stay tuned to Good for Forests and the SFI website for upcoming events tied to International Year of Forests.