Power from the Trees: How Good Forest Governance can Help Reduce Poverty

Forestry is no magic bullet for poverty eradication any more than any other sector is on its own. But good forestry does offer some high-potential routes out of rural poverty. Forestry can contribute to food security, provide resource safety nets and sometimes enterprise opportunities where little else exists. Forests have also proven to be fertile ground for pioneering good local governance.

What is needed is for national and international governance frameworks to take a lead from local initiative and convert laudable intentions into some practical action. It is time to remove the barriers that prevent forests and trees from contributing to the livelihoods of
poor people and to support emerging opportunities for sustainable local forestry enterprises.

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James Mayers and Sonja Vermeulen
International Institute for Environment and Development
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