Forests and human health in the tropics: some important connections
Why should foresters concern themselves with issues of human health? There are at least two important answers to this question. First, and perhaps most fundamental, forestry activities affect human health and human health affects forests. Second, the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) (see Box), which the world’s countries have committed to meet by 2015, reflect increasing global concern about human health. Four of the MDGs (1, 4, 5 and 6) address health directly. It can also be argued that improvements in human health (as part of human well-being) are a prerequisite for accomplishing the seventh goal, which is the most pertinent for foresters.