This talk presents a personal view of the causes of, and solutions to, tropical deforestation. Following a brief review of the environmental, social and economic importance of forests, I look at the main causes of deforestation and forest degradation, both the direct or immediate drivers and the underlying causes. Most of these are values or consumer education-related. But some, like those associated with poverty drivers, are more nuanced. I will then look at some of the main international strategies that have been promoted to counteract deforestation. The presentation particularly explores the ‘win-win’ potential of a ‘rights-based’ approach that involves supporting the land rights and forest management practices of forest-dependent communities, especially indigenous peoples. Ultimately, any effective and durable solution comes back to global governance and the values that underpin it.
Dr. Michael Richards’ article “Deforestation – What is Causing it and How can we Prevent it?” was published in the September 2014 issues of IEF Leaves
and is also available here:
Please join us on Saturday, April 24th, 2021 at:
1pm EDT (New York)
6pm GMT (UK)
7pm CET (Europe)
10:30pm IST New Delhi
Dr Michael Richards is a natural resources economist with 40 years experience in Latin America, Asia and Africa. He has worked in Malawi, Sri Lanka, Mexico, Honduras and Ghana. Since the early 1990s his work for various international NGOs and UN agencies has focused on policy, and social and institutional issues around the sustainable management and conservation of tropical forests.
This is one of a monthly series of webinars on environmental action & issues around the globe hosted by the International Environment Forum: https://iefworld.org/