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#1-2024 / ‘Conservation Timber,’ wood with a story!

17 juni 2024

Eli Prins, Mark van Benthem, Sietze van Dijk

A year and a half ago, Stichting Probos was asked to use its knowledge and contacts to develop a market for ‘conservation timber’ as part of the Cities4Forests program. This has resulted in partnerships between the municipalities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam and forest communities in Suriname, Bolivia, Guyana, and Guatemala. Conservation timber from these community forests is being used for various applications, including benches, boardwalks, and bicycle and pedestrian bridges. In this article, you will read why and how Probos is working on this initiative.

About 36% of the remaining intact forest landscapes worldwide are managed by local communities. Numerous studies have shown that community management is a highly effective form of nature conservation. Deforestation rates are much lower in areas inhabited by indigenous communities. The significant role of community forest management in combating large-scale deforestation, with all its consequences, calls for greater understanding and appreciation of community forest management, including timber harvesting. However, these forest communities often find it challenging to secure a market for their products. This is where the concept of ‘conservation timber’ and the Cities4Forests (C4F) program come into play.