New report: Cutting Down the Poor

Executive Summary from the World Growth report ‘Cutting Down the Poor

The government of the United Kingdom and the European Union have introduced measures against illegal logging with their trading partners that are currently costing approximately €22.4 million annually. By the EU’s own estimates these measures are likely to be ineffective  Continue reading

New Report: Wronging Indonesia – The EU’s Bait and Switch Illegal Logging Policy

The EU is delaying implementation of a ‘Voluntary Partnership Agreement’ (VPA) with Indonesia on illegal timber exports. Indonesia has complied with EU demands at significant cost, but the delays mean Indonesia’s exporters will now have to comply with a different, more costly system of regulation. This report examines the implications.  Continue reading

New report: FSC’s Closed Shop – Shutting Down Forestry in The Developing World

Forest certification under the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) has been surrounded by controversy since its inception. Most of the controversy has been generated by activist organisations publicly attacking private sector forest operators that are implementing FSC certification. There are no other industrial standards or environmental management standards that are subject to as much controversy. Continue reading

Manufacturing Dissent: How the Green Movement is Distorting FPIC

Free Prior and Informed Consent’ (FPIC) has become a core element of environmental campaigning over the past few years. The FPIC narrative for environmental campaigners is simple: the private sector is engaging in projects that impact local communities; the way to address this supposed problem is to require FPIC for large-scale resource projects. The real problem, however, is that there is no practical definition for FPIC. Continue reading

Trees Before Poverty; The World Bank’s Approach to Forestry and Climate Change

November 2011 – A World Growth Report

At the United Nations climate change conference in December 2009 in Copenhagen, the World Bank tabled a report recommending a global strategy to reduce the 17 per cent of global greenhouse emissions caused by deforestation and land use. The strategy consisted of curbing the forestry and agricultural sectors, and then substituting them with other industries. In other words, it presented a restructuring of the forestry and agricultural sectors. The Bank sought pledges to fund that strategy throughout and following UN conference based on the 17 per cent number, Continue reading

Grappling with Inordinate Uncertainty; Measuring the Carbon Footprint of Tropical Land-Use Change

June 2011 – A Study by World Growth

It is fashionable to consider the ‘carbon footprint’ that day-to-day activities of humans have on planet earth. The rationale for this concept is that it will give us a readily understood indication of the emissions of certain gases – especially carbon dioxide and methane – that are implicated in raising the earth’s temperature and the level of the sea which has become the focus of much contemporary concern in the community. The published research has concentrated on primary forest and permanent grassland. Little has been published on secondary forest or degraded forestland. Continue reading

A Poison, Not a Cure; The Campaign to Ban Trade in Illegally Logged Timber

May 2011 – A World Growth Study

Environmental groups, such as WWF and Greenpeace, have a global goal of halting commercial forestry and forestry in native forests. One of their strategies to advance this campaign is to generate global concern that illegal logging is a major global problem. One presumption is that high volumes of illegally-sourced wood products are entering the global market. This presumption cannot be substantiated and is very likely to be untrue. The campaign urges trade bans on imports of illegal timber. It has also been driven by industrialized countries, in particular the UK. The campaign is also supported by Continue reading

Green Protectionism and the Lacey Act

April 2011 – A Submission by World Growth

The US Lacey Act is heavy-handed in its approach. Regulatory intervention under the Act is justified under the presumption that high levels of illegally sourced wood products are entering the US market. In reality, this is not the case. This view has been propagated by a political campaign aimed to protect uncompetitive industry. Impartial assessment of the issues is needed before the US Government considers widening the scope of these amendments. The limited assessments that so far have been Continue reading

How REDD Will Impoverish the Developing World and Reduce Biodiversity; An Indonesian Case Study

March 2011 – A Study by World Growth

A number of developing countries have committed to reduce greenhouse gases and to participate in international REDD (Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation) programs to cease deforestation and reshape their economies as “low carbon” economies. Environmental nongovernment organisations (NGOs) and Western donors argue this will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect biodiversity. The REDD programs will have the opposite effect. It will impoverish those economies. Continue reading