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Working paper in progress:
to be

The Dawning of the ‘Asian Century’:

Emerging Challenges before Theory and Practices of IR in India

India International Centre,

Dec 10
12 2012


Lianboi Vaiphei
, Indraprastha College, Delhi University

Climate change is one of the biggest challenges facing humanity in the 21st century. It
has become
a global environmental problem which has been receiving intense political
attention both at domestic and international levels, due to which it has become an issue of
concern in International Relations.
Climate change refers to any significant change in the

measures of climate
which last

for an extended period of time. In other words, climate change
includes major changes in temperature, precipitation, or wind patterns, among others, that
occur over several decades or longer. One of the affect of climate cha
nge can be seen in the
changes in precipitation patterns, rising sea levels, and more frequent weather
that has occurred
on account of
climate change.

forests play critical roles in accounting for most of the terrestrial plant biomass
and regulate global temperature by sequestering carbon. Besides, forest has been treated as a
public good, as they contribute to stable, fertile landscape for human settlem
ent, provide
numerous timber and non
timber resources and are also places of recreation.

In Asia, the natural forests remain in a state of crisis as they are threatened by a
complex array of forces that undermine their ability to fulfill vital ecological

and societal

The region
encompasses some of the planet's greatest cultural, economic, and
ecological diversity, with approximately 60% of the world's population resides in
communities ranging from major urban centers to the remote rural communi
ties. The rapid
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growth in large regional economies such as China and India in Asia has elevated human
prosperity and has the potential to re write the trajectories of economic growth by decoupling

from fossil fuel use; which threatens to
exacerbate the
climate challenge.

There is an urgent need to address climate change and mitigate them through a
comprehensive policy worldwide. 0ne of the policy that seeks to mitigate climate change is
Sustainable Forest Management (SFM), which was conceptualiz
ed in the Earth
Summit at Rio de Janeiro in 1992 at the

United Nations Conference on Environment and
Development (UNCED)


United Nations has formulated a framework that would help to disseminate and
articulate the effects on climate change through the United Nations Framework Convention
on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
The climate change wil
l adversely affect South Asia when the
laciers from Himalayas melt

increase flooding and affect the water resources in the
next two
three decades, besides causing rampant diseases such as diarrhea affecting on
morality in a study made by the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

The flooding
would exacerbates soil erosion, storm surge and other coastal hazards that will compound the
pressure on natural resources and the environment due to rapid urbanization, industrialization
and economic development.

The affect of Climate Chang
e is expected to hit developing
countries the hardest.
pose a detrimental challenge on sustaining development

The need for sustaining development would redefine the trajectories of economic
growth but also lead to a greener economy
. This

to the dawn of the Asian century since
many of the countries in Asia are developing nations with little climate foot prints, struggling
to tap into the global economic market could lead to heterogeneity in the decision making
process in the international

Climate Change in the Public Policy

The climate of the Earth is influenced by many factors, mainly by the amount of
energy coming from the sun, but also by factors such as the amount of greenhouse gases and
aerosols in the atmosphere, and the properties of the Earth’s surface, which determin
e how
much of this solar energy is retained or reflected back to space.
Climate change is caused by
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factors that include
oceanic processes
such as

oceanic circulation
, variations in


received by the Earth,





induced alterations of the natural world;
which cause

global warming
, and "climate change" is
often used to describe
specific impacts.

Climate change


in the statistical distribution


patterns over
periods ranging from decades to millions of years.

It may be a change in average weather
conditions, or in the distribution of weather around the average conditions (i.e., more or fewer
extreme weather events).
According to UNFCC

‘climate c
ge’ i
s a change of climate

has been

attributed directly or indirectly to human activity

alters the composition of the
global atmosphere and in addition to natural climate variability
has been
observed over
comparable time periods.

and why climate change has occurred can be best understood when we delve
back into the fundamentals of what has lead to the increase of the green house gases, which
is responsible for global warming.

The energy from the sun passes
through the atmosphere
d warms the surface of the planet. While most of this
heat is simply radiated back into
space, some is trapped by greenhouse gases

'greenhouse gases,' are naturally
gases such as

water vapour, carbon dioxide (CO
methane (CH
), and nitrous
oxide (N
This has a warming effect on the atmosphere and ultimately keeps the planet at an average
temperature of approximately 15°C. Without this process, the global average surface
temperature would be closer to

Many of the human specific

have le
d to the increase in the emissions of the
green house gases.

This is due to

the historic
al dependence of human beings
on fossil
fuels as
the primary source of the energy driving global mobility and commerce.

To da
human consumption of fossil fuels has grown in step with the global
population and economy,
the change in land use,

for the increase in

has s
een a significant change in the
composition of the Earth's atmosphere.

is why the
greenhouse gases have significantly

increased ever since the industrial revolution

as more fossil fuels were burn from the onset of the industrial revolution.

why the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide is f
ar higher than the last 650
000 years and has been growing fast
er in the last 10 years than w
t it ha
s been since the
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study of climate was started in


rate at which human being
s have altered the Earth
and t
he various ecosystems
grown exponentially
ver the past few centuries. The

human combustion of fossil fuels have
increased the flow
of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere which
led to


concentration and

the natural greenhouse effect.
The rapid
increase in population has led to urbanization and has change the landscape through
deforestation. This has cause extinction of some species
and the increase in economic
activity has witness the release of toxic substances in the sea, land and a

The net effect
of these changes
has led
to the warming of the planet.
It has become clear within the past
several decades that the progressive growth of human has increasingly influence the climate
system itself.

Since the

century, the avera
ge temperature at the Earth's surface has increased
by approximately

Carbon dioxide levels has

increased by
approximately 36%
prior to the industrial revolution.


to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate
Change, a significant portion of this warming is attributed to human activities. Such warming
has also contributed to

in the rate of global sea
level rise.
In 2001, the
Intergovernmental Panel on Clim
ate Change projected future increases in global mean
ature of 1.4 to
5.8°C by the year 2100, along wit
h an increase in sea level of 9 to

actual magnitude of climate change that is ultimately realised will depend in large part
upon future hu
man emissions of greenhouse gases. Nevertheless, it is clear that humans, and
the environment in which they live, are currently surrounded by a changing climate, and how
we respond to this change over the next few decades will be central to achieving globa
and environmental sustainability.

The warming of global climate is now unequivocal. Most of the increase in global
temperature observed over the past 50 years is very likely due to human emissions of
greenhouse gases. It
is very likely that the


human activities since 1750 have had a
global warming effect on the Earth, as there are many observations of increasing air and
ocean temperatures, widespread melting of snow and ice, and rising sea levels.

The 20

century has witness the increa
se in the global sea level by 17 cm due to the
melting of the snow and ice from the mountains and in the Polar Regions. In the 21

global warming due to climate change is expected to change the natural systems much more,
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such as the increase in
the sea level due to the melting of the Greenland and the Antarctic ice
sheets would have major repercussions on the coastal areas of the world. Any threat to the
coastal areas would affect the water supply in al
l continents; as this would

increase the flo
risks in some areas and droughts in others.

Climate Change is leading to global warming which would have serious consequences
on the capacity of the ecosystem to adapt as it may lead to an extinction of some species and
thereby disturbing the living cha
in in the
biodiversity. It

has been observed that the
temperature in the last half century is

unusual in comparison with that of the previous 1300
years. The last time that the
Polar Regions

has remained significantly warmer than what it has
been 1
, 25,000

years ago when the sea level rose by 4 to 6 meters.

The observation of climate change has witness many regional changes such as the
changes in the temperature of the ice in the Arctic besides the precipitation, wind patterns and
ocean salinity and the fre
quency of the heat waves and its intensity of the tropical cyclones.
The changes in the temperature has a deep impact
on the magnitude of the agricultural
production, as certain crops will have higher productivity if the local temperature increase by
1 to
3 degree Celsius but may have a deep impact on other crops. Some previously
unanticipated impacts of regional climate change are just starting to become apparent.


climate is a major

not only the spatial distribution of the
a and fauna in the world but also

human enterprises such as agriculture and forestry.
at is why th
e regional climate change has already affected many natural systems

he snow
and ice has started melting and thawed the frozen ground as a consequent o
f which the
hydrological and biological systems are changing and in some cases being disrupted. These
changes in the natural world are bound to have an effect on the human lives irrespective of
any geographical or political divide. It is no wonder that cli
mate change has a significant
impact in the world and the international politics.

The increase in the global temperature and climate variability has increase the risk of
forest fires.
(IPCC WG II 2007, p. 18).

an increase in global temperature wou
ld lead
to desertification of many of the forest in the world.
It was t
he decline
in precipitation that has
led to desertification and aridity of the Aral sea area of Central Asia, besides the shrinkage in
irrigation as found in the study made by Kobin and Glantz (1998) and the global warming
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caused by climate change could lead to the s
ame consequences. In other words it would
shrink the presence of forest in the world.

Forest is also the home to many of the indigenous people around the world and
provides livelihood through the forest resources.

In fact forest serve as an important “sa
net” to many communities in times of the economic stress as they provide many forest based
goods and services which are central to the economic, social and cultural rights to

that live in the forest.

During the financial crisis in the late
1990s in Indonesia, many
households turned to the forest for supplementary income sources (Sunderlin 2002). For
example, thousands of people went into remote peat forests in Kalimantan to gather turtles
and tree bark for sale in urban markets (Chokkalingam

et al. 2005). Households unable to
afford high prices for modern energy sources revert to collecting fuel wood from the forest.

Any disruption of the forest ecosystems will in turn lead to disruption in the provision
of forest
based ecosystem goods and s
ervices such as timber, fuel wood, forage, fruits,
medicines, and materials for handicrafts, which are often of particular importance to poor
communities in developing countries (Millennium Ecosystem Assessment 2005;
influence of climate change would t
herefore make both the indigenous and the poor people
vulnerable since their livelihood depend on the natural resources of the forest. The
vulnerability of the situation

them vulnerable to any human rights violations.

The emergence of the interface
between human rights and climate change

The impacts of climate change on human rights due to the disruption of forest
ecosystems is a subset of a wider and increasingly well
understood set of effects resulting
from the direct impacts of climate change.
e World Bank

that 90 percent of
the 1.2 billion people living in extreme poverty depend on forest resources for some part of
their livelihood (World Bank 2004; UNDP et al. 2005). In Indonesia, for example, more than
10 million poor people live in state forest zones wi
th good forest cover, while millions depend
on forest for their income (Wollenberg et al. 2004). In the Democratic Republic of Congo, 40
million people rely on forests for food, medicines, energy, and income (Debroux et al. 2007).

The forest does not only provide the livelihoods and homes to the indigenous people
and the poor, but
integral to their economic, social and cultural (ESC) rights.
In many
both State and non
state actors control forest access and use, w
hich deny the people
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their ESC rights as forests are an important means of maintaining the cultural identity of the
people (Colfer et al. 1997).
Accordingly, the loss of forest
based income sources and
ecosystem services due to climate change could be seen

as violations of economic, social, and
cultural rights. Further, the exacerbation of those losses (through adaptation options foregone)
due to poor forest management could be similarly understood.
For example, commercial
timber companies have relied upon
military and paramilitary assistance to deal with local
opposition to their logging activities (Colchester 2006, p.49).

Despite the importance of forests to the income, health, and identity of the
communities that live in and around them, forest governan
ce has tended to be dominated by
the interests of political and economic elites. Laws and policies governing access to forest
land and resources tend to be systematically biased against rural communities, and to grant
special privileges to commercial inter
. In Honduras, for example, the implementation of
forestry regulations has favored logging companies, while erecting bureaucratic hurdles to the
legal exploitation of forests by communities and smallholders

The proximate causes of deforestation and
degradation include both need as well as
greed. Much forest destruction is driven by commercial
scale economic activity that enjoys
implicit or explicit State subsidies. For example, poor logging practices by domestic and
transnational corporations can ope
n up forest areas to colonization and hunting, while wood
waste left behind can make forests vulnerable to forest fire
. Commercial scale agribusiness,
ranging from cattle ranching in the Amazon region to oil palm plantations in Southeast Asia,
has also ca
used large scale conversion of natural forests to other

uses (Kanninen et al. 2007).
In such case the
enterprises do not face the true costs of forest loss to the local, national, or
global economy.

Conservation organizations have cooperated with law enf
orcement authorities to
police access to protected areas, and in some instances communities have been forcibly
evicted from those areas (Seymour 2008).
Any move to conserve forest and prevent
degradations has affected the economic rights of the local peopl
e and thereby has led to many
other violations of human rights.
The forestry sector provides several illustrations of such


Larson and Ribot 2007)




Laurance et al. 2001)

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For example, deforestation has often been blamed for massive landslides and flooding of
the sort likely to become more frequent

with climate change, due to which governments have
quickly announce logging bans and other controls on forest use in response to such
catastrophes such as in China, Thailand and the Philippines (FAO and CIFOR 2005) which
leads to millions of people to be
out of work. There is a risk that in the name of adaptation to
climate change, governments will limit settlement and farming in sensitive watersheds, which
could in turn displace the poor without offering adequate compensation.

Case studies on forest l
aw enforcement from around the world indicate that high
profile “crackdowns” on illegal logging tend to be targeted against the rural poor rather than
against the business people and officials who are often behind forest crime (Colchester 2006).

Such exam
ples suggest that in many countries, current forest governance regimes are
inadequate for upholding international human rights standards. Combining various strands of
international law

including such instruments as the UN Declaration on the Rights of
igenous Peoples and the Convention on Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination

has been asserted that such standards

…recognize the right of forest peoples to ‘own, control, use and peacefully enjoy their
lands, territories and other resources, and

be secure in their means of subsistence’
(Colchester 2007, emphasis in original).

There is often a disconnect between the recognition of such rights and standards in
ratified treaties and national constitutions and their realization through law and prac
tice in the
forestry sector (Colchester 2007). A key implication of this disconnect

and the broader
characterization of the state of forest governance offered above

is that new initiatives
designed to harness forests in the service of climate change a
daptation and mitigation risk
exacerbating existing weaknesses and inequities in current forest governance regimes.

Forest governance in many tropical countries reflects a legacy of colonial era rights
and management regimes, in which the State claims ow
nership of most forest areas, and
forests are exploited primarily for commercial timber. State claims are often contested by
indigenous peoples and traditional communities that reside in and around forest areas. In
respect to forests,

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… [t]he dominant pat
tern of government intervention has been one of increasing
central control over forest resources, the denial of access to forest resources by groups
that have traditionally or historically depended on them, and control over trade in (and
thus the ability t
o benefit from) forest species and products (Peluso and Vandergeest
2001, as cited in Menzies 2007, p. 6).

As a result, who owns the forest and what constitutes legal uses of forest resources are
often unclear. Even in countries where indigenous and com
munity rights over forests have
been recognized on paper, local people have often failed to realize expected benefits due to
inadequate enforcement of new forest tenure rights and other complementary rights

including citizenship, free prior and informed
consent, and the right to redress (Sunderlin
2008, pp. 12

The effectiveness of forest governance is only weakly associated with the type of
formal ownership. The impacts of forest interventions on local people depend on clear user
rights and responsibilities, enforcement of property rights, participation by fores
t users in
making, and downward and horizontal accountability of decision
makers (Agrawal
et al. 2008, p. 1462; Wells 2006).

Forest governance at the international level is also contested and dynamic. Over the
last two decades, the international

community has repeatedly failed to negotiate a binding
agreement on forests. According to one recent analysis of those efforts, the United Nations
Forum on Forests and other intergovernmental attempts to address deforestation are doomed
to failure as long

as they are subservient to current neoliberal trade and investment regimes
(Humphreys 2006). Most recently, the emergence of avoided deforestation as a key climate
protection instrument has shifted the center of gravity of international forestry discussio
away from forestry, agriculture, and biodiversity
related forums and into the UNFCCC.

To date, very little attention has been given to the policies and practices needed to
maintain the adaptive capacity and productivity of natural or planted forests
in the face of
climate change (Guariguata et al. 2007). In September 2007, when the Hurricane Felix
devastated large swaths of forest in Central America, has demonstrated the vulnerability of
forests to extreme weather events, which are likely to increase
in frequency and severity.
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Thereby many of the environmental issues have a bearing on the human rights of the
indigenous people, who dwell in the forest and their rights to survival.

The degradation of forest ecosystems

and associated resilience to the impacts of
climate change mentioned above

will thus reduce forest
based incomes. Women, whose
household responsibilities and income sources often include the gathering of forest prod
are likely to be particularly disadvantaged by their loss. The impact of climate change on
forests will also render already vulnerable communities even more vulnerable to “natural”
disasters such as forest fires, landslides, and floods that will resu
lt from human
climate change.

There has been many contentious issues and debates about Reducing Emission on
Deforestations and Destruction (REDD) in which forest governance at both national and
international levels is contested and dynamic. Und
er such conditions, the impact of forest
policy changes and programmatic interventions to promote climate change mitigation and
adaptation objectives could either accelerate or retard efforts to mainstream a rights
approach into forest
related law an
d management practices. However, SFM seeks to address
global warming through climate change.

Mitigating Climate Change through Sustainable Forest Management


Forest play an important role in the emission of greenhouse gases and it is here that
an help in mitigating climate change, and enhance its adaptive capacity to climate
change besides reducing the exposure and sensitivity to it. About 20% of the total carbon
emissions come from forest cover loss and forest degradation. It has been observed
that in
countries which has experience high rate of forest loss such as Brazil, the land use change has
been estimated to contribute up to 75% of all carbon dioxide emissions in 1994. This is
the vegetation and soils of the world's forests contain

a vast quantity of carbon

more than one and a quarter times the amount stored in the atmosphere.

The tropical forests have the greatest potential for sequestering carbon in the world.
They could provide 80 percent of increased storage of carbon in the

world's forests, mainly
through forest regeneration and reduced deforestation. The Tropical forest in America has the
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greatest potential for increasing carbon storage, followed by Asia and then Africa. The
improved forest and land management resulting in
lowered rates of deforestation and forest
degradation in the tropics would reduce the current rate of CO

emissions substantially, and
also reduce the release of other greenhouse gases associated with the burning of forest

Temperate and b
oreal forests are net carbon sinks. Increase in the forest cover
leads to
forest carbon

stock enhancement
. That is why the forest and their conservation or loss
influences climate and climate in turn is a key driver of the changes in forest ecosystem. The
changing carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, changing temperatures and precipitation, or
changes in the frequency of extreme events may affect forests in a number of different ways.

SFM has been defined as the policies which adapt the environmentally appropriate,
socially beneficial, and economically viable management of forests not only for the present
but also for the future generations. In other words, it is
the management of fores
ts according
to the principles of sustainable development as it aims to maintain and enhance the economic,
social and environmental values of all types of forest, be it the
mountain forests and
watersheds to dry land forests or the coastal forests.


enhance the environmental,
socio cultural and economic functions of the forest and help to secure the survival of forest

SFM can ensure that productive or multipurpose

continue to store carbon and
maintain their capacity to provide ot
her goods and services for the benefit of current and
future generations. It needs to adapt to modifications caused by climate change, both gradual
and abrupt by addressing adaptation measures such as assist natural regeneration of functional
species in th
e forest.

SFM seeks to mitigate climate change through the management of forest as the
management can improve the
forest management practices
and mitigate as well as adapt
climate change since they are closely linked. The policies of SFM


help the forest
dependent people adapt to


new condi
tions caused by climate change, as they are more
vulnerable to the changes caused by climate change.
Although f
s are

managed not only
for climate change, but for



, us
ually c

objectives such as

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production of goods, protection of soil, water and other environmental services,
conservation of biodiversity, provision of socio
cultural services, livelihood support and
poverty alleviation.

Fig 1: How forest manageme
nt helps tackle climate change

Adapted from:

Strategic framework for forests and climate change
. Collaborative Partnership
on Forests, 2008

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (

report has estimated
about 12
15 percent of the
projected CO

emissions from fossil fuel consumption could be
offset by slowing deforestation, promoting forest regeneration, and increasing the area

plantations and agro forestry systems

from the present till 2050

The United Nations Collaborative
Programme on Reducing Emissions from
Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Developing Countries (UN
REDD Programme)

created in September 2008 to assist developing countries to build capacity to reduce
emissions and to participate in a future REDD+mec
Many countries supported the
instrument to
provide incentives for essentially all land
based forest mitigation measures; this

adaptation of
trees and forest

capacities of
forest dependent

Forest Carbon


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reducing emissions through reducing deforestation and forest degradation, forest conservation,
enhancement of

forest carbon stocks.

SFM help in adapting against the climate change
by managing the different types of forest
in the mountain to the dry land forest as well as the coastal forests
through the following
as mention below:


Carbon Sequestration

by forests and trees


Enhancement of forest carbon stocks


Management of forest health and vitality


Management of forest biodiversity


Management of mountain forests and watersheds


Management of dry land forests


Management of coastal forests


arbon Sequestr
ation by forests and trees

Carbon sequestration by forests has attracted much
interest as a mitigation approach,
as it has been considered a relatively inexpensive means of addressing climate change
For carbon sequestration and carbon storage

are important forest ecosystem
services oriented at reducing or compensating for these emissions and the loss of this service
may influence the level of climate change.
Forests and trees are important carbon sinks. They
absorb carbon dioxide from the
atmosphere and store it as carbon.

Accordingly, climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts through SFM must
provide synergies and be balanced with other national and local forest objectives
areas, as

of wood and non
wood products contribute

to soil and water conservation,
forest being the
repositories of aesthetic, ethical, cultural and religious

Whenever forest are cleared or degraded
and vegetation is burned or decays Carbon
dioxide (CO
) is released, besides other
greenhouse gases, including methane (CH
), nitrous
oxide (N
O), carbon monoxide (CO), and oxides of nitrogen (NO). When forests grow,

is withdrawn from the atmosphere through photosynthesis and stored as carbon in the
vegetation. Levels of carbon in th
e soil may be increased by reforestation and other forest
management practices. Currently, the world's forests are estimated to be net sources of CO
primarily due to deforestation and forest degradation in the tropics.

That is why

SFM is also
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seen as an
integral factor in Reducing Emission from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in
developing countries (REDD) by UNFCC


Enhancement of forest carbon stocks

SFM can help in

maintaining the existing carbon stocks by increasing th
e storage of
carbon in forests
by increasing fores
t area or biomass per unit area

and in forest products;
afforestation, reforestation and forest restoration

As this leads to increased
absorption of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and thereby h
elps in combating global
warming. Tree both outside and within forests help mitigate climate change by storing carbon,
halting land degradation, providing fuel to substitute fossil fuels and fixing nitrogen to reduce
the use of fertilizers.

Once the trees

are harvested, new trees can grow in their place and
continue to sequester carbon. Planted forests today cover around 264 million
hectares and
absorb an estimated 1.5 gigatonnes of carbon from the atmosphere
each year.

Around 13 million hectares of forest were converted to other uses or lost through
natural causes each year between 2000 and 2010. The world has an estimated 850 million
hectares of degraded forests, which could potentially be restored and rehabilitated to
back lost biodiversity and ecosystem services, and, at the same time, contribute to climate
change mitigation and adaptation.

SFM strengthens the adaptive capacity of trees and forest especially in fragile forest
by reducing the vulnerability of the

forest health by protecting the forest biodiversity through
the wildlife. Besides, the

policies of SFM

substituting energy
expensive products
as steel, aluminum or concrete

with industrial wood products.


Management of forest health and

The increase in temperatures and in the levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide as well
as changes in precipitation and in the frequency and severity of extreme weather events are
having notable impacts on the condition of the world's forests, for
example by making winters
warmer or affecting the length of growing seasons.

Climate change, particularly extreme weather events, can affect forest pests and the
damage they cause by directly impacting their development, survival, reproduction and
spread; altering host

and susceptibility; and indirectly impacting ecologica
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relationships such as changing the abundance of competitors, parasites and predators. Insects
and diseases may be the first indicators of climate change, and there are already numerous
examples where insect and pathogen lifecycles or habits have been alt
ered by local, national
or regional climatic changes.

Warmer temperatures have resulted in range expansions of pests such as pine and oak
processionary caterpillars in Europe and red band needle blight in the United States.
Research has suggested that ou
can significantly affect the carbon sink or
source status of a large landscape. Thus preventing and reducing pest impacts on forests
may also provide an opportunity to mitigate climate change. Management of pests and
prevention of their s
pread helps ensure that forests remain healthy, reducing the risk of
forest degradation and increasing resilience to climate change.


Management of forest biodiversity

"Biodiversity underpins forest resilience,
which in turn underpins the permanence
of forest
carbon stocks. For these
and numerous other reasons the
achievement of biodiversity benefits are
for the success of REDD+."

Summary of Forest Day 3.

CIFOR, 2009

Biodiversity is the key to resilience of forest ecosystems to climate change, and
therefore for conservation of forest carbon stocks. Forests are among the most important
repositories of terrestrial biological diversity. Together, tropical, temperate and b
oreal forests
offer very diverse habitats for plants, animals and micro
organisms. Biological diversity is the
basis for a wide array of goods and services provided by forests. In their great variety, forest
trees and shrubs have a vital role in the daily
life of rural communities in many
parts of the


Management of mountain forests and watersheds

Mountains are among the regions most affected by climate change. The

in temperature and extreme weather events will amplify hazards in mountains
worldwide and change the hydrological cycle, in which mountains play a key role. Melting of
glaciers and movement of permafrost to higher altitudes will

the danger of
ck fall
debris and mud flows and the risk of glacial lake outburst floods. Climate change will alter
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precipitation and runoff patterns. For large parts of the world, this will mean reduced
availability of water when it is most needed.

FM leads

slope stability and hence contribute to the provision of
essential environmental services such as a regulated water flow and protection against

hazards. Sustainable mountain development and collaborative and integrated approaches to
d management are therefore vital for climate change
mitigation and adaptation


Management of dry land forests

Forests in dry

lands are important in terms of biodiversity conservation,
unique and endemic species that are particularly adapted to extreme
ecological conditions.
They provide essential ecosystem goods and services for people, livelihoods and well

Climate change is a huge concern in the dry

lands, as it is
expected to exacerbate
degradation caused by human activities. Global warming is expected to cause a decrease in
rainfall and an increase in extreme weather conditions s
uch as long periods of drought with
few exceptions
, an increase in the frequency and in
tensity of wildfires and loss of
They have the potential, if well valued
and sustainably manage
d, to contribute
to climate
change adaptation and
mitigation, buffer against erosion and desertification, and
contribute to economic development,
food security and poverty reduction.

Management of Coastal forests

The Coastal
forests which

include the

mangroves, beach forests, peat swamp forests
and lowland moist tropical forests
. The risk of sea
level rise due to climate change, combined
with existing threats caused by population pressure such as overexploitation, conversion to
other uses

such as
ports, resort development and other infrastructure as well as aquaculture
and rice

Marine pollution

poses a threat for many natural coastal

The coastal

a number of important roles in the three areas of environmental,
social and economic


In the environmental resources they help in protecting

erosion and surge
tide damage and
ldlife refuges, besides safeguarding water
quality and
stabilizing land, trapping sediments, providi
ng nutrients to inshore waters.
Socially, they help protect

human settlements,
offering aesthe
tic and

. Finally as an
resources, they help in

providing income
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ities for the local population and also provide the

nursery grounds for many
commercially valuable fish and shellfish species.

Peat lands

are particularly carbon
ecosystems, whose forests have much more
carbon below the ground than above it. When forests in peat

lands are burned, drained or cut,
they are a huge source of carbon emissions and a major

contributor to climate change

that i
where sustaining the coastal forest is important for SFM.

SFM can therefore play an important role in climate change adaptation.

Severe water
scarcity and increased desertification are likely, thus causing a vicious circle of forest and
land degradation
. Climate
related changes are likely to result in species range shifts and
altered tree productivity, adding further stress to forest ecosystems and putting at risk the
livelihoods of local communities that rely on the forest for their survival.
In other w
ords, SFM
is a quest for sustaining development as it seeks to
strengthen the

coping strategies
related to
climate change and diversify

forest management
related employment opportunities and
through a
daptive land use planning and management

Need for a paradigm shift through Sustainable Forest Management

Climate change is

but often the policies adapted to confront them have
led to the core issues of survival of many forest dependent communities. As a result there is a
need for
a paradigm shift towards a comprehensive understanding of climate change and
addressing them through a policy which will lead to sustainable development through SFM.

seeks to

natural forest cover as a way of maintaining ecosystem resilience to
climate change and
adapting to Global warming

solutions for the policies

human rights violations



a paradigm shift
redress forest governance by

ensuring the rights of the forest
dwellers, especially the Indigenous people besides mitigating Climate Change in the world
and in Asia, in particular.

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The environmental forestry crisis is an indicator reflecting the obsolescence of
traditional forestry

paradigms. When old paradigms become obsolete, new paradigms emerge
and supplant the old, to become the new instrument for dealing with new challenges. In
forestry and natural resources management, this new paradigm is the sustainable forest
management (S
FM) paradigm. This paradigm shift in forestry and natural resource
management implies a change in the way professional foresters see, think, do or act in relation
to forests, natural resources and the environment. It demands changes not only in policies,
rograms and approaches but also in the capabilities of institution and individuals involved in
sustainable forest management. For any forestry institution to be relevant and effective, it
must be able to internalize the new SFM paradigm. It must innovate i
ts programs and
processes, change its structure and develop competencies consistent to the demands and
challenges of SFM.

SFM can be viewed as a system which aims to satisfy the needs of society for various
forest goods and services through the applicatio
n of forestry, environmental management,
ecological, social, economic and business pr
inciples and methods in the

utilization, renewal
and development of forest resources without significant degradation of the inherent capacity
of the forests to provide goo
ds and services on an uninterrupted basis (Revilla et al. 1999).

As a paradigm or framework, sustainable forestry is closely link to or intertwined with
environmental conservation and soc
ioeconomic development (Figure 2
). This relationship
implies that
sustainable forestry, environmental conservation, and socioeconomic
development are mutually reinforcing elements of sustainable development (Rebugio and
Cruz 1998).SFM paradigm implies, at least three imperatives of successful sustainable
forestry: enabli
ng/reinforcing forest and related policies; relevant programs and strategies;
and appropriate capabilities.

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Figure 2. Conceptual framework or model for sustainable forest management.

i. Supportive policies.

The basic forestry policies that are recognized

to be indispensable to
sustainable forestry include: holistic, integrated and balanced framework for forest
management; promotion of social justice and equity through participatory approach to forest
management; recognition and protection of the rights of

indigenous people; conservation of
soil, water, biodiversity and other natural resources; and economic and environmentally sound
forest harvesting and processing technologies.

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In the Philippines, these policies are embodied invariably in the Philippines
Constitution and are further articulated in the Philippine Strategy for Sustainable
Development (PSSD) and the Philippine Agenda 21.

ii. Strategic programs.

The strategic programs that could give flesh to the basic policies
include: watershed
based integr
ated forest management; community
based forest
management; conservation of biodiversity, soil and water resources; rehabilitation of denuded
forest lands; efficient forest product utilization and forest industry development; continuing
research and technol
ogy development. These shifting ways of seeing and doing in forestry can
be gleaned from Fig 2.

Physical capability building.

To match the improvement of human resources, the
physical resources needed for sustainable forestry will also have to be upgr
aded. This would
entail development of forest resources information and management decision support systems
and acquisition of modern telecommunications, transportation, and research facilities that
should improve forest protection, environmental monitorin
g, forestry research, and sharing of
information, expertise, experiences and other resources for sustainable forestry.

SFM address the i
nadequate attention
to the rights and voices of forest
communities within countries
which has been

ted at the international level, as there
has been advocacy
indigenous peoples’ rights

the IPCC



and the

dependent people
many i
ndigenous groups have challenged their
lack of inclusion in international

debates on issues such as REDD For example, at
of the Parties, Thirteenth session, Bali, Indonesia
COP13 in Bali in December 2007, activists
protested the launch of the World Bank’s Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) in part
due to inade
quate consultation with indigenous peoples during the Facility’s design (FPP
2008). At that event, the Chair of the United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues
called for recognition of indigenous rights, consultations with indigenous peoples, and
representation in the FCPF governance structure (Corpuz
Tauli 2007).

has addressed the need for ecological conservation without losing focus on the
economic development. As many of the ecological concerns addressed in a
manner under
conditions of weak governance,
leads to
violations of civil and political rights
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of the vulnerable people, which questions the sustainability of such a developmental


The onset of climate change has a deep influence in international relations as it has led
to the need of regional cooperation rather than competition and conflict as climate change is
not cause by any group of states
but is arising
from global sources outs
ide of the anarchic system of
sovereign states

and each state can influence the international affairs as the need to mitigate
climate change has challenge each state to look for a paradigm state. It is here that SFM seeks
to provide the paradigm shift in c
onfronting the fundamental challenge of re defining the
human relationship with the natural world.

SFM, in short provides the framework to negotiate the challenges faced due to the
growing scarcity of forest resources and the effect as well as impact of c
limate change by
dwelling into three aspects of human development

ecologically seeking to mitigate the
effects of climate change through carbon sequestration, socially protect the human security by
protecting human rights of the vulnerable sections of the

society such as the indigenous
people and economically provide sustenance through harvesting the forest resources.

The analysis of the environmental discourse related to Climate Change has shown
human insecurity is also the consequence of scarcity of

resources. No wonder that
socialization between states occurs through competition and conflict in a scenario where
climate change forms the background of international politics. It is here that SFM offers a
paradigm shift
through a framework of cooperation making a paradigm shift of incorporating the
environmental and social values with the economic growth.

For Asia in general and India in particular which hosts around a half of the world’s
is also the steward

18.8 per cent of global forests

need to address climate
change through SFM is a quest of sustaining development of half of

humanity but also of the

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