30 July 1998/WORKING DRAFT/BD.5 BACKGROUND DOCUMENT 5 INFORMATION ON FOREST- RELATED WORK UNDER EXISTING INSTRUMENTS New York, July 1998 This non-official document is a working draft, distributed for information only. It contains a preliminary analysis and inventory of relevant international arrangements and mechanisms. The information contained in the document will be sent for review and verification to all the international arrangements and mechanisms mentioned in the document. It provides additional background information to delegations attending the second session of the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (Geneva, 24 August-4 September 1998). Published in English only. It is envisaged that at a later stage, when input on its content had been received, a final version will be prepared. CONTENTS I. LIST OF ACRONYMS II. INTRODUCTION III. LEGALLY BINDING INSTRUMENTS WITH RELEVANCE TO FORESTS A. GLOBAL Environment, Sustainable Development 1. Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Importance Especially as Waterfowl Habitat 2. Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage 3. Convention for the Protection of the Ozone Layer 4. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change 5. Convention on Biological Diversity 6. United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification Human Rights 7. Convention Concerning Indigenous and Tribal Peoples in Independent Countries Trade 8. Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna 9. International Tropical Timber Agreement 10. General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade / World Trade Organization B. REGIONAL Environment, Sustainable Development 11. Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution 12. Treaty for Amazon Cooperation 13. Central American Convention on Forests. 14. Lome' IV Convention 15. Alpine Convention Trade, Economic Integration 16. North American Free Trade Agreement 17. Treaty Establishing the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa IV. NON-LEGALLY BINDING INSTRUMENTS AND MECHANISMS WITH RELEVANCE TO FORESTS 18. Forest Principles 19. Agenda 21 20. IPF Conlusions and Proposals for Action 21. Forest Partnership Agreements / National Forest Plans 22. Processes on Criteria and Indicators V. FOUR TABLES ON THE INTERRELATIONSHIP BETWEEN INSTRUMENTS AND THE FUNCTIONS OF FORESTS, AND PRECONDITIONS TO FULFILL THESE FUNCTIONS VI. CONCLUDING REMARKS, INCLUDING INDICATION OF POSSIBLE DIRECTIONS VII. BIBLIOGRAPHY ************************************ I. LIST OF ACRONYMS CBD Convention on Biological Diversity CEC Commission for Environmental Cooperation (under NAAEC) C&I Criteria and Indicators CITES Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora COMESA Treaty establishing the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa COP1, COP2 etc. First Conference of the Parties, Second Conference of the Parties, etc. CSD Commission on Sustainable Development CSD1, CSD2 etc. First Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development, etc CTE Committee on Trade and Environment (under WTO) ECE Economic Commission for Europe EMEP Protocol to the 1979 Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution on Long-Term Financing of the Co-operative Programmes for Monitoring and Evaluation of the Long-Range Transmission of Air Pollutants in Europe FAO Food and Agriculture Organisation FPA Forest Partnership Agreement GATT General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade GEF Global Environmental Facility IFF Ad Hoc Open-ended Intergovernmental Forum on Forests IFF1 First Session of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Intergovernmental Forum on Forests ILM International Legal Materials ILO International Labour Organisation IPF Ad Hoc Intergovernmental Panel on Forests IPF-I, IPF-II etc. First Session of the Ad Hoc Intergovernmental Panel on Forests, etc. ISO International Standards Organisation ITTA International Tropical Timber Agreement ITTO International Tropical Timber Organisation IUCN World Conservation Union LRTAP Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution MEA Multilateral Environmental Agreement, International Environmental Agreement NAAEC North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation NAFTA North American Free Trade Agreement NFP National Forest Plan SFM Sustainable forest management TBT Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade TFRK Traditional Forest Related Knowledge TRIPS Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights UNCCD United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification UNCED United Nations Conference on Environment and Development UNEP United Nations Environment Programme UNDP United Nations Development Programme UNGA United Nations General Assembly UNGASS Nineteenth Special Session of the United Nations General Assembly UNFCCC United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change UNTS United Nations Treaty Series WTO World Trade Organisation II. INTRODUCTION This Background Document is prepared to facilitate the substantive discussion of program element II(e), "Further examine the forest- related work being carried out by international and regional organizations and under existing instruments to identify gaps and overlaps", for the Second Session of the Ad hoc Open-ended Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF). This Document is an elaboration of United Nations document (E/CN.17/IFF/1998/11). This Document is also highly relevant to the mandate of category III of the IFF's programme of work. The options presented in this Document, may also be noted in light of the "consensus building" and "engagement in further action" phases of category III, The Note from the Secretariat on category III is contained in United Nations document (E/CN.17/IFF/1998/9). This Document and the Secretary- General's Report on programme element II.e (ii) may be seen as useful complementary information to facilitate the substantive discussion of category III at the Forum-s third session in May, 1999. This Background Document reviews 21 existing international instruments with relevance to forests. First, it considers seventeen instruments that are legally binding: of these, ten instruments are global in scope, and seven are regional. Second, four non-legally binding instruments, considered most relevant and constituting a holistic approach towards forests, are also examined. In addition this Document also includes a short overview of the various criteria and indicator processes currently underway. The Document focuses not solely on the text of an instrument but also takes into account its follow-up actions and practical implementation. Third, in a set of four tables, the Document attempts to chart the interrelationships between various instruments and the functions of forests as well as the preconditions to fulfill these functions. For each instrument, the following items will be elaborated: 1) the nature, scope and objectives of the instrument; 2) its relevance to forests; 3) the cooperation and links with other forest-related instruments; and 4) developments within the framework of the instrument with relevance to forests. It is noted that besides the instruments cited here, there are many more environmental agreements aimed at environmental conservation, in particular at the regional level. They may include habitat protection and protection of particular species of fauna and flora, such as the Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats (1979); the Protocol Concerning Protected Areas and Wild Fauna and Flora in het Eastern African Region (1985); and the Convention for the Protection of the Natural Resources and Environment of the South Pacific Region (1986). While these instruments are not included, an attempt has been made to include a relevant and representative selection of those regional conventions with most direct relevance to forests. Similarly, not all economic oriented regional treaties could be incorporated, although some of them contain provisions of relevance to forests. Also ongoing negotiations on subjects with relevance to forests, such as the revision of the International Undertaking on Plant Genetic Resources, fall outside the scope of this Background Document. It is understood that there is a difference between legally binding and non-legally binding instruments. Some instruments are not binding because they have not entered into force yet; others are not intended to be legally binding. From a legal point of view, it is difficult to compare the two categories. This Background Document somewhat disregards this legal reality in some instances, in order to come to an analytical framework and a subject-oriented comparison to arrive at an identification of gaps and overlaps of international instruments of relevance to forests. Ad Hoc Intergovernmental Panel on Forests (IPF) The UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) open-ended ad hoc Intergovernmental Panel on Forests (IPF) was established in 1995. It focused on 12 programme elements under five chapter headings, under which category V entitled "International organizations and multilateral institutions and instruments, including appropriate mechanisms" a discussion on existing instruments took place. Category V was discussed substantively at the third and fourth sessions of the IPF. The final report of the IPF noted that there are existing international legally binding instruments that are relevant to forests, such as the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Desertification Convention, CITES, ITTA, the Climate Change Convention and the Ramsar Convention. Those instruments address forest-related issues in a specific context, embody the concept of sustainability, and address many cross-cutting issues that are relevant to forests, such as financial resources, technology transfer, trade, and traditional knowledge. IPF also noted that these instruments do not deal comprehensively with all issues relating to forests, including sustainable forest management (SFM).. Ad Hoc Open-ended Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF) At its nineteenth special session in June 1997, the General Assembly decided to continue the intergovernmental policy dialogue on forests through the establishment of an ad hoc open-ended Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF) under the aegis of the CSD. The UN Economic and Social Council, by its resolution 1997/65, established the IFF The IFF, at its organizational session in October 1997, agreed on its programme of work which includes programme element II.e on" forest related work of organisations and under instruments" and Category III on "International arrangements and mechanisms to promote the management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests." The Forum should under II.e "examine forest related work being carried out...under existing instruments" and under category III "identify elements, build a global consensus and engage in further action" and should also identify the possible elements of and work towards a consensus on international arrangements and mechanisms, for example, "a legally binding instrument on all types of forests." At the Second Session of IFF, a substantive discussion of programme element II.e and a background discussion on category III are scheduled. At its Third Session in May 1999, a substantive discussion will take place on category III. Subsequently IFF will finalize its report at its fourth session in February/March 2000 and transmit it to the Eight Session of the CSD. Based on that report and depending on the decision taken by the Commission at its Eight Session, the Forum will engage in further action on establishing an intergovernmental negotiation process on new arrangements and mechanisms or a legally binding instrument on all types of forests. III. LEGALLY BINDING INSTRUMENTS WITH RELEVANCE TO FORESTS In this Chapter, seventeen international legally binding instruments with relevance to forests will be discussed. First, ten global conventions are addressed (nos. 1-10) in the following three categories: "Environment, Sustainable Development", "Human Rights" and "Trade". Within each category, the treaties are ordered chronologically by date of adoption. Subsequently, seven legally binding instruments which are regional in scope are considered, grouped in the sections -Environment, Sustainable Developments- and "Trade, Economic Integration". A. GLOBAL Environment, Sustainable Development 1. Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Importance Especially as Waterfowl Habitat Adoption: 2 February 1971 Entry into force: 21 December 1975 Parties: 106 (03/1998) Text: 996 UNTS (United Nations Treaty Series) 245 Website: http://www2.iucn.org/themes/ramsar Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The Convention's mission is the conservation and wise use of wetlands by national action and international cooperation.[Arts.1-3] At present, there are 903 sites designated as wetland of international importance. The total surface area of these designated sites is 67,9 million hectares. Relevance of the Convention to Forests Wetlands include intertidal forested lands, including mangrove swamps, nipa swamps, tidal freshwater swamp forests, and seasonally flooded forests. Cooperation and Links with Other Forest-related Instruments Art.5 Ramsar refers to cooperation: Parties are obliged to consult one another about the implementation of the convention, and undertake to coordinate their policies on wetlands. This is further interpreted as covering development assistance and cooperation with other conventions. The Strategic Plan calls for cooperation to be developed and strengthened with, inter alia, UNFCCC, World Heritage, CITES and the CBD in particular. Wetland diversity is seen as an important element of global biological diversity, as formulated in para.13 of Resolution VI.9: "Invites Contracting Parties to strengthen coordination of their approach to the two Conventions, so that Ramsar can contribute in the field of wetlands to the Convention on Biological Diversity's broader work on conservation of global biological diversity" [emphasis added]. A Memorandum of Cooperation between the Ramsar Bureau and the CBD Secretariat was signed at 16 January 1996, and a by Ramsar proposed Joint Workplan (March 1998) will be discussed at CBD COP4. Also more cooperation with the Council of Europe (Pan-European Biological and Landscape Strategy), GEF and NGOs is needed [Resolution VI.10]. The XI World Forestry Congress (October 1997) recommended that governments should pay more attention to mangrove and coastal forest ecosystems. The Ramsar Convention could be an appropriate forum to do so. Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests The Ramsar Convention originally focussed exclusively on preserving wetlands as waterfowl habitats, but has developed extensively over time, via decisions of the COP, to acknowledge the importance of wetlands for their biodiversity and their other ecological and environmental functions. The 6th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties (1996) adopted the Strategic Plan 1997- 2002 of the Ramsar Convention. It stresses the need to integrate the conservation of wetland biodiversity with sustainable development (considered synonymous with the Convention's concept of "wise use") and health and well-being of people everywhere. The Strategic Plan has two main purposes: to encourage implementation of the treaty and its multitude of guidelines which have been adopted over the years, and to involve as many actors as possible in its implementation. Some selected objectives of strategic plan are: - Progress towards universal membership of Convention; - Integrate economic use and sustainable development of wetlands, including informed participation of local communities, indigenous peoples and other stakeholders; - Raise awareness of wetlands values and functions; - Reinforce institutional capacity on national level; and - Mobilize international cooperation and financial assistance in collaboration with other conventions and agencies 2. Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage Adoption: 16 November 1972 Entry into force: 17 December 1975 Parties: 152 (10/1997) Text: 11 ILM (International Legal Materials) 1358 Website: http://www.unesco.org/whc Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The Convention aims to establish an effective system of collective protection of cultural and natural heritage of outstanding universal value. States recognize the duty of ensuring the identification, protection, conservation, presentation and transmission to future generations of their cultural and natural heritage.[Art.4] Parties are encouraged to adopt policies which aims at giving natural heritage a function in the life of the community and to integrate the protection of that heritage into comprehensive planning programmes. The Convention establishes the World Heritage List listing the world heritage sites. The World Heritage Fund provides a mechanism to provide international assistance. In this framework the special situation of developing countries has been recognized. Relevance of the Convention to Forests Forests can be considered as "natural heritage" in accordance with Article 2 of the Convention: "areas which constitute the habitat of threatened species of animals and plants of outstanding universal value from the point of view of science or conservation" and "natural areas of outstanding universal value from the point of view of science, conservation or natural beauty". Currently, over 32 forests are designated as World Heritage Sites. Inclusion in the World Heritage List creates the obligation for the State to protect the forests concerned, which could be national enforceable. Inclusion of a forest in the World Heritage List recognizes the universal interest and value, as well as the national sovereignty of the State over that forest. Cooperation and Links with Other Forest-related Instruments Cooperation with other conventions is not known; no clear links are established. In referring to protected area systems, Chapter 11 of Agenda 21, makes a link to possible nomination under the World Heritage Convention. Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests There is no specific focus on forests. In recent years, the implementation of the Convention has shown the recognition of indigenous populations and traditional land-use systems, mainly through the inclusion of cultural landscapes in the World Heritage List. 3. Vienna Convention on the Protection of the Ozone Layer Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer Vienna Convention Montreal Protocol Adoption: 22 March 1985 16 September 1987 Entry into force: 22 September 1988 1 January 1989 Parties: 166 (03/1998) 165 Text: 26 ILM 1529 26 ILM 1550 Website: http://www.unep.org/secretar/ozone London Amendment Copenhagen Am. Montreal Amendment. Adopted: 29 June 1990 25 November 1992 17 September 1997 Entry into force: 10 August 1992 14 June 1994 1/1/1999 if 20 ratific. Parties: 120 81 -- Text: 30 ILM 537 32 ILM 874 Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The depletion of the ozone layer is caused by the anthropogenic emission of certain inert gases, particularly CFCs and halons. This causes increased levels of ultraviolet rays which may cause harm to human health and the environment. Through the Vienna Convention, States commit themselves to protect the ozone layer from these destructive elements, and to cooperate with each other in scientific research to improve understanding of scientific processes. The Vienna Convention is a framework agreement, without targets or timetables for action. Subsequently, the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer was agreed to in 1987 and has been amended three times since (1990, 1992 and 1997). Many States have not yet ratified the London and Copenhagen amendments to the Montreal Protocol. The Protocol contains detailed international standards governing the production and consumption of ozone depleting chemicals based on continuing scientific evaluation under the Vienna Convention, and aims to reduce and eventually eliminate the emissions of man-made ozone depleting substances. The amended Protocol establishes a Financial Mechanism. [Art.10] Relevance of the Convention to Forests The Convention establishes a framework for the adoption of measures to protect "human health and the environment against adverse effects...from human activities which modify.. the ozone layer."[Art.2] The main relevance of the ozone regime for forests is the link between depletion of the ozone layer and the possible adverse effects this might have on forests. [Art.1.2] Implementation of the ozone regime would be beneficial to forests. Cooperation and Links With other Forest-related Instruments The protection of the atmosphere under the ozone regime is closely linked with the climate regime. They are complementary: the Kyoto Protocol regulates gases not controlled by the Montreal Protocol. CSD5 recommends Governments to give priority to solutions that provide the greatest overall benefit in terms of both ozone protection and prevention of global warming, which would be consistent with an integrated approach to the protection of the atmosphere. Further, the Montreal Protocol contains provisions which have an impact on international trade, most importantly Art.4 on trade restrictions. The ozone layer can be described as an "exhaustible natural resource" within the meaning of Art.20(g) GATT. There is compliance because the Protocol aims at its conservation. Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests The ozone regime deals to a certain extent effectively with the problem of ozone depletion. It continues to expand to include more gases and stricter timetables. 4. United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change UNFCCC Kyoto Protocol Adoption: 9 May 1992 11 December 1997 Entry into force: 21 March 1994 not yet in force Parties: 174 (03/1998) -- Text: 31 ILM 849 Annexed to FCCC/CP/1997/7/Add.1 Website: http://www.unfccc.org Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The ultimate objective of the Climate Change Convention (UNFCCC) is to achieve a stable level of greenhouse gasses in the atmosphere that will avoid dangerous interference with the climate system. [Art. 2] Since the emissions of greenhouse gasses have increased, the concentrations in the atmosphere are going up. As these concentrations change, the temperature of the earth rises. This, in turn, leads to changes in the patterns of precipitation and to sea- level rise. If there would be no global agreement to limit greenhouse-gas emissions, the temperature of the Earth is expected to increase between 1.0 and 3.5 Celsius over the next century. Even a stabilization at about present levels will require significant reductions in global emissions next century. The Convention itself contains no concrete targets and timetables. With the Berlin mandate, stemming from COP1 in 1995, the Parties agree "to begin a process to enable to take appropriate action for the period beyond 2000, .. through the adoption of a protocol or another legal instrument." Industrialized (or 'Annex 1') Parties have committed themselves to aim at setting "quantified limitation and reduction objectives within specified time-frames ... for their anthropogenic emissions by sources and removals by sinks of greenhouse gases not controlled by the Montreal Protocol" [II.2.(a)]. To take the necessary action, the Kyoto Protocol was adopted: States agree to limit emissions CO2 to assigned amounts as stipulated in its Annex A, to be reached between 2008 - 2012. Relevance of the Convention to Forests There is a direct relationship between the climate regime and forests. Forests serve both as reservoirs of carbon, and sinks for atmospheric carbon dioxide. Maintaining or increasing forest cover can mitigate the treath of climate change, by reducing the level of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Deforestation affects greenhouse gas emissions. Land-use policies and practices have a major effect on climate change, and they have altered considerably. The anticipated rate of warming is considerably faster than the evolutionary history or experience of forests. Consequently, the ability of forests to rapidly adopt to changing climate regime may be limited. It is thought that one-third of all forest species "and two-thirds in the boreal forests of the northern hemisphere taiga" could change in a world warmed by a doubling of CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere. Forest ecosystems and planted trees may be affected by changes in climate, in terms of distribution, growth rate, diversity etc. Further, forests can be strategic for meeting emission reduction targets in some countries. Art.4.1(d) of UNFCCC calls for the "enhancment, as apropriate, of sinks and reservoirs of all greenhouse gases.., including ... biomass, forests, and oceans.." Art.4.1(a) calls on Parties to develop "national inventories of anthropogenic emissions by sources, and removals by sinks" of all greenhouse gases. Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments - See also above under the Vienna Convention - There is a relationship with biological diversity: while the quickest way to sequester carbon may be to plant fastgrowing tree species, there may be a potential to derive multiple benefits from trees planted under this framework. For example, there may be opportunities to restore biodiversity, rehabilitate degraded forests, create energy plantations, rehabilitate degraded watershed forests and conserve soil and water. - For relationship wtih the Desertification Convention, see below. Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests The recent adoption of the Kyoto Protocol could have great relevance to forests. It states that each Annex 1 Party shall, in achieving its quantified emission limitation and reduction commitment "implement and further elaborate policies and measures in accordance with national circumstances, such as ...(ii) Protection and enhancement of sinks and reservoirs of greenhouse gases not controlled by the Montreal Protocol, taking into account its commitments under relevant international environmental agreements; promotion of sustainable forest management practices, afforestation and reforestation." [Art.1(a)(ii)] Further, Art.3.3 of the Protocol declares: "The net changes in greenhouse gas emissions by sources and removals by sinks resulting from direct human induced land-use change and forestry activities, limited to afforestation, reforestation and deforestation since 1990, measured as verifiable changes in carbon stocks in each commitments period, shall be used to meet the commitments under this Article of each Party included in Annex 1. The greenhouse gas emissions by sources and removals by sinks associated with those activities shall be reported in a transparent and verifiable manner and reviewed in accordance with Articles 7 and 8." Before COP1 of the Parties to the Protcol meets, Annex 1 countries will have to provide data of their carbon stocks in 1990 to enable to estimate changes in subsequent years [Art.3.4] in order to, for example, changes in greenhouse gas removals by sinks can be subtracted from the assigned amount for that Party. The COP will have to decide on how to measure this, taking into account work of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and advice of Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice. Other relevant provisions are to be found in Art.6, which states that Annex 1 Parties may, under conditions which will have to be elaborated, acquire from any other Party emission reduction units resulting from projects aimed at enhancing anthropogenic removals by sinks, and in Art.12, which establishes a "clean development mechanism" to fund project activities which aim at meeting the ultimate objective of the Convention and to assist in achieving compliance with the Kyoto Protocol. There are opportunities to derive multiple benefits through the implementation of the Kyoto Protocol. For example, the XI World Forestry Congress concluded that the Joint Implementation approach under the climate regime is regarded by some as a promising instrument for the protection of tropical rainforests. 5. Convention on Biological Diversity Adoption: 5 June 1992 Entry into force: 29 December 1993 Parties: 172 (03/98) Text: Doc. UNEP/Bio.Div/N7-INC.5/4, 31 ILM 822 Website: http://www.biodiv.org/forest.html Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The CBD has three goals: 1) the conservation of biological diversity, 2) the sustainable use of the components of biological diversity, and 3) the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the use of genetic resources. Biological diversity includes diversity within species, between species and ecosystems, and between various types of forest landscapes. Relevance of the Convention to Forests A large component of the world's biodiversity is found in forests. Forests are estimated to contain 70% of the world's plant and animal species. Most of the world's terrestrial biodiversity is located in primary tropical forests. Some temperate and boreal forests also provide an importent habitat to some endangered and threatened species. If the current rate of deforestation in the tropics continues, the rate of extinction for birds, animals and plants could be many times the natural extinction rate. Arts.6 and 10(a) call for development of national strategies for in situ conservation of biological diversity, their inclusion into cross-secrotal plans, and in national decision-making. Art.8 paras.(a) (b) and (c) call for setting aside protected areas, and protecting unique and threatened ecosystems. These articles have mainly a programmatic character. They do not provide specific criteria regarding the areas which should be protected and how absolute such protection should be. Another link is the area of Traditional Forest Related Knowledge (TFRK). Section III.3 of the terms of reference of IPF provides that consistent witht the terms of the CBD, IPF should encourage countries to consider ways and means for effective protection and use of TFRK. IPF-IV stresses again that international cooperation on TFRK and rights related to it must be related with the obligations under CBD, especially Arts. 8(j) and 10(c) are relevant. It is recognized that indigenous people and forest-dependent people who possess TFRK could play an important role in SFM. Links and Cooperation with other Forest-related Instruments COP3 (1996) agrees in Decision III/21 on the "relationship of the Convention with the Commission on Sustainable Development and biodiversity-related conventions, other international agreements, institutions and processes of relevance". It endorsed the memoranda of cooperation with, inter alia, the Ramsar Convention and CITES. Closer relationships will have to be developed with UNFCC and UNCCD (see further below), with a view to making implementation activites and institutional arrangements mutually supportive. Compared to other conventions, CBD puts quite some effort in cooperation efforts. Developments Within the framework of the Convention with relevance to forests COP2 (1995) adopted the Statement on Biological Diversity and Forests, which was presented at IPF-II. The Statement highlights issues of mutual concern to the CBD and IPF: forest have a crucial role in maintaining global biological diversity, eg as providing habitat. Within forest ecosystems, the maintenance of ecological processes is dependent on the maintenance of their biological diversity, and vice versa. The loss of forest biological diversity is linked to the substantial deforestation, fragmentation and degradation of all types of forests. Forest and forest biological diversity play an important economic, social and cultural role in the lives of many indigenous and local communities. Sustainable forest management should ensure that components of biological diversity are used in a way and at a rare that does not lead to the long-term decline of biological diversity. Other areas of mutual concern are research, capacity building, criteria and indicators. COP2 took Decision II/9 on "Forests and Biological Diversity", in which the COP, inter alia, requests advice and information pertaining to the relationship between indigenous and local communities and forests, and wants a study on links between forests and biological diversity. Decision III/12 of COP3 (1996) contains its Programme of Work for forest biolgical diversity. The CBD affirms that it will work in a complementary way with the IPF and other forest-related forums on forests and biological diversity. A work programme will be developed which will facilitate the application and integration of the objectives of the CBD in the sustainable management of forests at the national, regional and global levels, in accordance with the ecosystem approach; complement existing national, regional and international C&I frameworks for SFM; and incorporate traditional systems of forest biological diversity conservation. Ensuing, the Decision gives guidance to the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBTTA) of the CBD on research priorities in this area. It is recommended that biodiversity considerations to be integrated fully into IPF recommendations and proposals for action, and a list of research and technological priorites were identified, varying from analysing the role of biodiversity in forest ecosystem functioning to developing methodologies to assess and evaluate the multiple benefits derived from forest biodiversity. The COP affirms that some forests can play a crucial role in conserving biodiversity, and recognizes that issues related to forest must be dealth with in a comperehensive and holistic manner, and notes that conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity must be an integral part of SFM practices. The implementation of CBD's Work Programme on Forest Biological Diversity would be of great importance to forests and the work of IFF, it contains many elements of mutual interest. Especially CBD's work on ecosystems, genetic resources, indigenous peoples and development of methodologies is relevant to IFF, and vice versa. COP4 (May 1998) will discuss the Programme of Work for Forest Biological Diversity (UNEP/CBD/COP/4/7). Its four proposed objectives are; 1) develop national measures for integrating conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity into national forest management systems; 2) identification and wider application of traditional systems of conservation and sustainable use of forest biological diversity, and equitable sharing of benefits; 3) financing for conservation and sustainable use of forest biological diversity; and 4) contribute to other international and regional organizations and processes, in particular the IPF proposals for action and input to IFF. 6. United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Those Countries Experiencing Serious Drought and/or Desertification, Particularly in Africa Adoption: 17 June 1994 Entry into force: 26 December 1996 Parties: 122 (03/98) Text: Doc. A/AC.241/15/Rev.3, 33 ILM 1328 Website: http://www.unccd.ch Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The UNCCD aims at combatting desertification, mitigate the effects of drought and contribute to the achievement of sustainable development. This involves long-term strategies that focus on improved productivity of the land and rehabilitation, conservation and sustainable management of land and water resources, leading to improved living conditions. The UNCCD adopts an integrated approach which addresses the physical, biological and socio-economic aspects of the processes of desertification and drought. The Convention recognizes that combatting desertification is not a narrow sectoral activity but requires a broad approach, incorporating most aspects of environmental management in the drylands which comprise one third of the Earth's land surface. Relevance of the Convention to Forests To the extent that forests carry out important ecological functions which prevent both drought and desertification, forests are an important element to the UNCCD. The Convention aims to protect forests because forests perform important ecological functions that prevent desertification and arid conditions. Intact forest ecosystems help stabilize the soil; consequently deforestation fosters both desertification and land degradation, particularly in arid, semiarid and subhumid regions. In addition to this ecological link, forest loss and desertification are linked in that the underlying socio-economic conditions and causes are very similar. Strategies to deal with desertification are likely to mitigate also forest loss, and vice versa. Regional Implementation Annexes are provided for, and the ones for Africa an Latin America and the Caribbean require national action programmes to ensure the integrated and sustainable management of natural resources, including forests. The UNCCD emphasizes the need for integrated, cross-sectoral responses to the problem of land degradation. There is a strong emphasis on the involvement of non-governmental organizations and the need for a community-based, bottom-up approach, involving all stakeholders in planning and management. The 1997 Report of the -Second International Expert Consultation on the Role of Forestry in Combatting Desertification-, endorsed by the XI Wold Forestry Congress, recalls the key role of forestry in desertification control, but it can only be effective if well planned and fully integrated into national, long- and medium term strategies, taking due account of the resources available. Links and Cooperation with other Forest-related Instruments Art.8 UNCCD refers to the need for coordination with other conventions, in particular CBD and UNFCCC. COP1 (1997) in its Decision 13/1 on collaboration with other conventions, intents to strengthen further the collaboration with other relevant conventions and in particular CBD, UNFCCC and the Ramsar Convention, while recalling the "Programme for the further implementation of Agenda 21" adopted by UNGASS which, inter alia, recommends that the COPs to conventions signed at the Rio Conference or as a result of it, as well as other conventions related to sustainable development, cooperate in exploring ways and means of collaborating in their work to advance the effective implementation of the conventions. Biodiversity: The UNCCD refers to dryland ecosystems contain a rich biota, including plant and animal species not found elsewhere. The Executive Secretary of the CBD emphasized (in ICCD/COP(1)/11 of 29 December 1997) institutional cooperation between the Rio conventions, and called cooperation between the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advise (SBSTTA) under the CBD and the CST under the CCD of particular interest. Climate Change: UNFCCC Preamble: "countries with arid and semi-arid areas or areas liable to floods, drought and desertification ... are particularly vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change." It is also thought that desertification may temporarily affect climate change. Forestry can play a major part in helping to combat almost every type of soil degradation including desertification. In the arid zones where the linkage between forestry and food security is most evident, forests and wooded lands help to conserve the soil and water base that makes agricultural production possible through protective forests, nitrogen-fixing tree species may further help to improve soil fertility. The Executive Secretary of the UNFCCC stressed (also in ICCD/COP(1)/11) the interlinkages between climate change an desertification. The Kyoto Protocol could also make an important contribution in the fight against desertification. The two secretariats need to explore opportunities for cooperation, particularly in capacity building, and streamlining processes for gathering and considering information. He also stated that in this respect a pilot project had started, involving some developing countries to produce national reports that meet the requirements the three -sister conventions- (UNCCD, UNFCCC and CBD). Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests Since the UNCCD is a relatively new convention, the future direction taken by the implementation and the relevance specifically for forests is not yet clear. Some guidance can be gathered from COP1, where it is decided in its work programme to focus on benchmarks and indicators in the furtherance of the aims and objectives of the Convention. The Committee on Science and Technology reported on work regarding benchmarks and indicators. The Committee placed particular emphasis on the further elaboration of implementation of indicators, and the development of a methodology for determining impact indicators, which are seen as necessary to assess the effects of actions to implement the UNCCD. Another field of future work of relevance to forests is the area of traditional and local technology, knowledge, know-how and practices. A number of initiatives regarding inventories of traditional and local knowledge have been undertaken. COP1 established a Global Mechanism for promoting, mobilizing and rationalizing the transfer of financial and technological assistance, and collecting and dissemination of information. The Global Mechanism has not yet become operative; it might offer a opportunity to raise financial assistance for forest-related projects. Another feature of the UNCCD is the provision for partnership arrangements. These agreements spell out the role of each partner, including donor agencies and governments, recipient governments, and NGOs for many different purposes such as mobilizing financial resources, reorienting assistance mechanisms to fit the Convention-s approach, making inventories of funding sources, or developing new models of technological cooperation. These could possibly include forest-related aspects. Another application of the UNCCD relevant to forests would be exchange and use of data on issues relevant to both topics. Human Rights 7. Convention Concerning Indigenous and Tribal Peoples in Independent Countries (ILO No. 169) Adoption: 27 June 1989 Entry into force: 5 September 1991 Parties: 12 (04/98) Text: 28 ILM 1382 Website: http://www.ilo.org Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The Convention provides a comprehensive approach for the protection of the social, economic and cultural rights of indigenous people. Parties undertake the responsibility for developing, with the participation of the peoples concerned, coordinated and systematic action to protect the rights of indigenous and tribal people and to guarantee respect for their integrity. ILO Convention 169 is the updated version of ILO Convention No. 107 (adopted in 1957), which expressed a more interventionist approach. They are the only existing international legal instruments specifically designed to protect the rights of indigenous and tribal peoples. Relevance of the Convention to Forests Many indigenous and tribal people live in forests. Forests provide habitat and are important to them for economic, social and cultural reasons. The Convention could be a tool to exercise control over ways of life and economic development, and make distinctive contributions to ecological cooperation and understanding. Concerns about conserving and managing forests often coincide with the survival and integrity of the cultures and knowledge of indigenous people. Art.15.1 provides that the rights of people -to the natural resources pertaining to their lands shall be specially safeguarded- and this includes the right -to participate in the use, management and conservation of these resources-. Art.7 declares that Parties should "take measures, in co-operation with the peoples concerned, to protect and preserve the environment of territories they inhabit." Also provisions on land-use planning and public participation have relevance to forests. For implementation of the Convention, the INDISCO Programme had been adopted. This Interregional Programme to Support Self-reliance of Indigenous and Tribal Communities through Cooperatives and other Self-Help Organizations is to contribute to improving socio-economic conditions of indigenous and tribal communities through pilot projects implemented by local organizations and traditional institutions of these communities. There is no specific focus on forests, though programme activities include, inter alia, ancestral domain management and environment and natural resource management. Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments Since the Convention has a vary limited ratification, no cooperation mechanisms are established. There are clear links with other conventions related to forests, most importantly with the Biodiversity Convention. Arts.8(j), 10(c), 17.2 and 18.4 deal with indigenous and traditional forest related knowledge and technologies. The CBD certainly includes a concern for indigenous rights, but at the same time it also presents the risk for indigenous people to be seen as a -resource- for biological diversity rather than as people who hold legal, social, cultural and economic rights in relation to it. Within IPF/IFF, indigenous peoples- concerns related to forests fall mainly under CBD. Para. I.3 of the Terms of Reference of the IPF (E/CN.17/IPF/1995/3, Annex III) provides that: "Consistent with the term of the Convention on Biological Diversity, encourage countries to consider ways and means for the effective protection and use of traditional forest-related knowledge, innovations and practices of forest dwellers, indigenous people and other local communities, as well as fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from such knowledge, innovations and practices"; the Secretariat of the CBD was designated lead agency for preparing the background document for IPF. The Desertification Convention provides in Arts. 17.1(c) and 18.2(b) equitable benefits arising from traditional local knowledge, know- how and practices. On the side of soft-law instruments, the Forest Principles contain various references to indigenous rights, although some could be interpreted as rather ambiguous: - Preambular para.(c) calls for a holistic and balanced examination of forest uses, taking into account the traditional uses of forests; - Principle 2(b) recommends the ecological management of forestry resources and land, in order to sustain the social, economic, cultural and spiritual needs of present and future generations; - Principle 2(d) promotion of participation of local communities and indigenous populations in planning, development and execution of forest policies; - Principle 5(a) indicates that forest policies should support cultural interests and respect the rights of indigenous peoples, creating economic interest for them, while maintaining their cultural identity through adequate titles over land; - Principle 8 recommends that policies and laws should protect forests with cultural and spiritual importance; and - Principle 12(d) recognizes the importance of indigenous capacity and local knowledge, and benefits arising from the utilization of indigenous knowledge should be equitably shared among them. In 1996, the International Meeting of Indigenous and Other Forest-Dependent Peoples on the Management, Conservation and Sustainable Development of All Types of Forests, in support of the IPF produced the Declaration of Leticia, which, inter alia, states that "the rights, welfare, viewpoints and interests of Indigenous Peoples and other forest-dependent peoples should be central to all decision-making about forests at local, national, regional and international levels" and concluded that Indigenous Peoples and other forest peoples constitute an important cross-cutting theme in the forest agenda, affecting many other issues. Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests There are no specific developments within the framework of the ILO Convention with particular relevance to forests. However, should the Convention undergo a revival, it could become an important instrument in relation to forests and could possibly include reference to participation of indigenous people in national land use plans and programmes [Forest Principles 5(a) and 12(d), IPF Work Programme Element I.1]. Trade 8. Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora Adoption: 3 March 1973 Entry into force: 1 July 1975 Parties: 143 (12/1997) Text: 993 UNTS 243. Website: via http://www.unep.ch Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) is aimed at protecting certain endangered species of wild fauna and flora from over-exploitation through international trade via a system of import/expert permits. CITES focuses exclusively on trade, and is premised on the view that the control of international markets will contribute to the preservation of endangered species. CITES operates by listing endangered in one of its three appendices: Appendix I endangered species, trade in which to be tightly controlled Appendix II species that may become endangered unless trade is regulated Appendix III species that any party wishes to regulate and requires international cooperation to control trade. Detailed criteria for amendment of Appendices I and II are to be found in Resolution Conf. 9.24 of the Conference of the Parties; for inclusion in Appendix III in Conf. 9.25 (Rev.). CITES is a mix between an environmental treaty and a treaty regulating trade. Its enforcement provisions are relatively detailed. All parties must take appropriate measure to enforce the Convention and prohibit trade in specimens in violation of its provisions, including by penalising trade and possession, and providing for confiscating or return to the state of export. Resolutions have been adopted to further improve enforcement and compliance. Relevance of the Convention to Forests Given the potential for over-exploitation of an endangered tree species as a result of trade, regulation of trade can be an important mechanism by which to ensure sustainable extraction and use. CITES can prevent trade in a species threatened by extinction. It is thought that there might be approximately 100 tree species endangered at present. Only a limited number of trees have been listed for protection. Links and Cooperation with other Forest-related Instruments COP10 of CITES (1997) adopted a resolution entitled -Co-operation and Synergy with the Convention on Biological Diversity-.[Conf. 10.4] The resolution notes an overlap between the two conventions and calls upon Secretariats and Parties to coordinate activities. It further calls upon Parties to explore opportunities to obtain funding through the Global Environmental Facility for relevant projects which are also contributing to the objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests CITES has the potential to become increasingly important for forests, and especially for timber. COP10 adopted Resolution Conf. 10.13 regarding the implementation of CITES for timber species. The resolution tries to strike a balance between the biological data and the trade data which should be available before discussing amendment proposals of a timber species in one of the Annexes to CITES. It lists a number of organisations, part of which should be consulted before submission of the proposal. It is recognized that identification of timber can be difficult but that it is essential for the effective implementation of the Convention. Further, it is recognized that commercial trade may be beneficial to the conservation of species, on the other side it is also noted that some timber species may be under threat because of detrimental levels of use and international trade. "The range states pay particular attention to internationally traded timber species within their territories for which the knowledge of the biological status and silvicultural requirements gives cause for concern." [10.13(j)] Besides the increased attention to timber species, the identification of timber species has the potential to be of great relevance to forests. COP10 decided in this regard: -10.51 The Parties should determine whether national standard organisations have already developed agreed vernacular nomenclatures for timber species and, if so, should provide this information to the Secretariat. 10.52 A list of agreed scientific names and their agreed vernacular names should be provided to timber importers and agencies dealing with CITES enforcement and border inspections for the standardization in 10.51 to be useful. 10.53 The Parties that have proposed and obtained the inclusion of timber species in ht appendices should comply with their obligation to produce identification material for the species concerned.- COP10 further decided to maintain its Timber Working Group, which was formed 1984 to study implementation problems resulting from the inclusion of several timber species in the CITES appendices. It now received new terms of reference, including the mandate to peruse the definition of terms and units used to describe parts and derivatives of timber in trade. 9. International Tropical Timber Agreement Adoption: 26 January 1994 Entry into force: 1 January 1997 Parties: 51 Text: Doc. TD/TIMBER.2/L.8 Website: http://www.itto.or.jp Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Agreement The 1994 ITTA is the successor Agreement to the 1983 ITTA, and is a commodity agreement to facilitate the trade in tropical timber, and ensure exports from sustainable sources by the year 2000. Membership to the International Tropical Timber Organisation (ITTO), the intergovernmental organisation which administers the ITTA, is restricted to producers and consumers of tropical timber. A State has to be member in order to participate in the Agreement. The ITTO Council is made up of 53 member governments, which between them account for 75% of the world-s tropical rainforests and 90% of the trade in tropical timber. The Agreement seeks to create a framework for cooperation on all relevant aspects of world timber economy (Art.1) and takes into account the linkages between tropical timber trade and the international timber market, as well as the need for a global perspective [Preamble]. The objectives of 1994 ITTA include: - providing an effective framework for cooperation, consultation and policy development among all members on all relevant aspects of the world timber economy; - contributing to the process of sustainable development and supporting member countries- national strategies for achieving exports of tropical timber and timber products from sustainably managed sources by the year 2000; and - providing a forum for consultation to promote non-discriminatory timber trade practices so environmental concerns will not give rise to protectionism. This concern, addressed in Art. 36, states that nothing in the agreement authorizes the use of measures to restrict or ban international trade of timber and timber products, particularly imports and use. The Agreement also aims at, inter alia, improve marketing and distributing of tropical timber exports from sustainably managed sources; to promote and support research and development; to encourage members to develop national policies aimed at sustainable use and conservation of timber producing forests and their genetic resources, and maintain the ecological balance in the regions concerned; and promote access to technology. Relevance of the Agreement to Forests 1994 ITTA remains continues to concentrate on tropical timber. During the negotiations of this Agreement, the positions on main issues were polarized along producer and consumer States. Producers favoured extending the scope of ITTA to cover all timber from all sources, in order to bring all forests under the same scrutiny, stringent guidelines and target date for sustainability, as agreed in the ITTO for tropical forests. The consumer countries held the view that broadening the scope to a global forest convention did not fall under the ITTO mandate. ITTA reflects the tensions between sovereignty and emerging norms of sustainable management, and also reflects ecological concerns. Its Preamble refers explicitly to the Forest Principles. Tropical forests are considered important because of the various functions they perform at the national level, including ecological functions, such as conserving soil and water, providing habitat for plants and animal species, and play a key role in regional climatic conditions (rainfall, temperature). Tropical forests represent also a wide array of socio-economic functions: they are an important instrument for economic development, are is the source of many products for the very subsistence of indigenous people, provide income and employment. On the international level tropical forests represent also various ecological and socio-economic functions: they influences climate change by helping slowing down global warming; they are reservoirs of biological diversity, since they harbour more than half the world-s plants and animal species; they are important for biotechnology; and they further are a heritage in their own right. Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments - In 1993, the ITTO adopted its "Guidelines on the Conservation of Biological Diversity in Tropical Production Forests", which calls, inter alia, for national forest policy and legislation to recognize biodiversity conservation as an important goal of forest management. - On indigenous people, reference is made to the need to give -due regard for the interests of the local communities dependent on forest resources [Art.1]. - There are many links with GATT/WTO which will have to be explored in the near future. This is especially necessary since contradictions between GATT and 1983 ITTO never were satisfactorily resolved. - ITTO continues to participate in the work of the CITES Timber Working Group, which is established to review the procedures, criteria and logistics for listing timber species in the Appendices of CITES. - ITTO works on timber certification with Forest Stewardship Council and ISO 14001. - ITTO links its work on certification with the development on the Forest Principles, Agenda 21, IPF Action Proposals, and various regional processes concerned with developing criteria and indicators for SFM. Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests In 1991 the International Tropical Timber Council of the ITTO adopted the "ITTO Year 2000 Objective". The objective of this strategy is to ensure that through international collaboration and national policies and programmes, ITTO members will progress towards achieving sustainable management of tropical forests and trade in tropical timber form sustainably-managed resources by the year 2000. Objective 2000 is formulated as a strict obligation, but is a non-binding goal and seems to provide for a process. Objective 2000 was only accepted after the consumer parties pledged, in a separate declaration, to apply the same standards for SFM to their own forests as developed by ITTO. The commitment by the consumers is clearly broader than that of the producers and applies to forests as opposed to internationally traded timber. [Preamble/Art.1] Available information on progress to date points to the difficulty in achieving Objective 2000. In 1994, ITTO producers members reported that about 2.7 million hectares of tropical forest in their territories was under sustainable management, which is about 1.5% of their total area of natural forests. As a first step towards developing sustainable forest management, the establishment of demonstration forests is another positive development. Several ITTO members are now in the process of establishing demonstration forests. Certification. ITTO is intensifying its work on certification, as indicated at the 23rd session of the ITT Council (1997). It studies the overall developments since 1996 including details of experiences gained in seven countries. Some progress has been observed in the development of certification schemes. One underlying assumption of an effective use of certification is the existence of a market where certified products are preferred by buyers and consumers. The other is that forest owners and managers, processing industry, suppliers and distributors could enjoy equitable benefits from certification. Criteria and Indicators. In the context of ITTO's Year 2000 objective, ITTO developed a set of revised C&I, aiming at offering practical assistance to member countries in their efforts towards SFM and will provide a measure by which to monitor these. Other developments of interst are the commitment made by ITTO members to review the scope of the agreement four years after its entry into force; and the possibility of extending the concept of the Year 2000 Objective of ITTA for all types of forests. 10. General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade / Agreement Establishing the World Trade Organisation Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade (1995) Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (1995) Agreement on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures (1995) Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures (1995) GATT WTO Adoption: 30 October 1947 15 April 1994 Entry into force: 1 January 1948 1 January 1995 Parties: 126 132 (09/1997) Texts: 55 UNTS 194 33 ILM, 1144 Website: http://www.wto.org Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Agreement From 1986 to 1994 the Uruguay Round negotiations took place, which resulted in the Agreement establishing the WTO and, inter alia, the four Agreements listed above. It might be too early to fully assess the meaning of these agreements and their implementation in the area of forests. The functions of WTO are: administering WTO trade agreements forum for trade negotiations; handling trade disputes; monitoring national trade policies; technical assistance and training for developing countries; and cooperation with other international organizations. The GATT is an instrument intended to support and ensure the proper functioning of free trade. The chief objective of GATT/ WTO is to provide a secure and predictable trading environment, as well as a continuing process of market opening, in order to promote worldwide economic growth. It is based on three key principles: the most favoured nation obligation (Art.I), the national treatment obligation (Art.III) and the prohibition on quantitative measures (Art.XI). GATT/WTO creates a mechanism for members to negotiate tariff schedules; although it is intended that tariffs be reduced in this process, there is no obligation to actually make such reduction. As regards non-tariffs barriers, the most important GATT prohibition is on the use of quantitative import and export provisions. The set of Uruguay Round Agreements contain specific rules aimed at eliminating other non- tariff barriers. The protection of the environment is an overall objective to the parties of the Agreement, since it also contains in its Preamble a reference to sustainable development and the protection of environmental protection. The most important environmental provision, subject to different legal interpretations, is Article XX. It includes provisions for exceptions to all trade rules for certain specified purposes such as: (b) necessary to protect human, animal or plant life; and (g) relating to the conservation of exhaustible natural resources if such measures are made effective in conjunction with restrictions on domestic production or consumption. These measures are subject to the conditions that measures not be "applied in a manner which would constitute a means of arbitrary or unjustifiable discrimination between countries where the same conditions prevail, or a disguised restriction on international trade." The exceptions of Article XX come into consideration for environmental or other purposes when a national measure raises a bound tariff without compensation, imposes a quota, denies national treatment or otherwise infringes a benefit accorded to another party. The Preamble of the WTO Agreement includes direct references to the objective of sustainable development and the need to protect and preserve the environment. The new Agreements on Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) and on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures take explicitly into account the use by governments of measures to protect human, animal and plant life and health and the environment. Both the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of International Property Rights (TRIPS) and the Subsidies Agreement contain environment-related provisions. More generally, and as was recognized at UNCED, an open, equitable and non-discriminatory trading system has a key contribution to make to national and international efforts to better protect and conserve environmental resources and promote sustainable development. Relevance of the Agreement to Forests The GATT/WTO is of relevance to forests since the Agreement regulates all trade, including timber and timber products. Trade liberalisation can have both positive and negative effects on the exploitation of natural resources. This is also of importance because many forests are subject to Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs), for which a different set of rules is under further development. A range of provisions in the WTO can accommodate the use of trade-related measures needed for environmental purposes, including measures taken pursuant to MEAs. Those that are cited regularly as being of key importance are the provisions relating to non-discrimination and to transparency. Beyond that, and subject to certain important conditions, the exception clauses contained in Article XX of the GATT, allow a WTO member legitimately to place its public health and safety and national environmental goals ahead of its general obligation not to raise trade restrictions or to apply discriminatory trade measures. For example, the issue arises whether a country may ban or restrict exports of natural resource products on the grounds that it is necessary for conservation purposes. A ban on timber exports for true conservation purposes could be consistent with Art.XX(g). These and other provisions have been a major focus of work of the Committee on Trade and Environment (CTE) of the WTO and will be kept under review in its future work programme. Another area of interest for forests is WTO's work on standardization. If standards are harmonised and they result in requirements which represent significantly different costs of compliance by countries, the issue of unequal treatment of like products or discrimination could be raised. Unnecessary obstacles to trade could arise when level of standards is higher than what is implied by the legitimate objective of "protection of plant and animal life or the environment". Links and Cooperation with other Forest-related Instruments - Although the TRIPS Agreement makes no reference to sustainable development or environmental protection, there is a clear link with Biodiversity. Within CTE, some States see contradictions between TRIPS and CBD, while others do not envisage problems. One area of overlap is access to genetic resources, Arts. 8(j) and 16.5 of CBD. ASEAN countries supported the view that fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising form patenting and commercial use of genetic resources had not been dealt with in TRIPS. - WTO has recognised that well designed environmental labelling programmes can be effective instruments of policy to encourage the development of an environmentally conscious public. As a voluntary instrument and if applied by private sector organizations, certification and labelling of forest products can be considered compatible with the international trade rules, not falling within the jurisdiction of the TBT Agreement, but when labelling programmes distort trade, they may be challenged by WTO. TBT compliance could be used as a guidance in the design of any certification and labelling scheme to avoid friction with trade rules. The TBT Agreement covers technical regulations concerning products and their process and production methods. It is not clear if schemes for certification of products made of sustainably produced timber and eco-labelling will be subject to the TBT. - The CTE, in 1997 held information sessions with representatives of Secretariats of MEAs, (e.g., CITES, Montreal Protocol, UNFCCC, and CBD) to examine the relationship between the provisions of the multilateral trading system and trade measures for environmental purposes. There are now approximately 200 multilateral environmental agreements, of which at least 20 contain trade provisions. No WTO/GATT dispute resolution panel has yet addressed the conformity of any multilateral environmental agreement with GATT rules. Developments Within the Framework of the Agreement with Relevance to Forests Certification. The Uruguay Round has made significant progress in improving market access for forest products, especially in terms of reducing tariffs for all types of forest products. However, several initiatives taken during the last years, such as the development of rules for of accreditation for certifiers, may be non-tariff barriers to international trade in forest products. The trade-environment debate. When trade ministers approved the results of the Uruguay Round negotiations, they also took a decision to begin a comprehensive work programme on trade and environment within the WTO, thus recognizing WTO-s responsibility to address environmental considerations in developing and administering trade rules. The CTE was established in 1995, as an attempt to bring environmental and sustainable development issues more into the mainstream of WTO work. The CTE-s first report, which was adopted by the WTO Ministerial Conference in 1996, notes that the multilateral trading system has the capacity to further integrate environmental considerations and enhance its contribution to the promotion of sustainable development without undermining its open, equitable and non-discriminatory character. The CTE is, inter alia, charged with making appropriate recommendations on -the need for rules to enhance the positive interaction between trade and environment measures for the promotion of sustainable development-. The pace of progress to date on these issues has been slow . The CTE report contains limited substantial analysis or concrete proposals. However, the trade and environment debate relating to forest products and services could in the near future deal with several issues applicable to forests, such as the improvement of market access to forest products and services, including further reduction of tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade; the promotion of community-based processing and marketing of wood and non-wood forest products; the development and exchange of experiences in respect of the implementation of full cost internationalization and its application to sustainable forest management, and relevant policy mechanisms; and the promotion of certification of forest products. A related area pertinent to forests is the issue of trade measures applied pursuant to MEAs. A number of proposals have been pout forward in the CTE to broaden the scope available under WTO provisions for the use of trade measures applied pursuant to MEAs, including some that would create an -environmental window- for the use of discriminatory trade measures against non-Parties to MEAs. These proposals have not yet attracted consensus support in the CTE. The Agreement on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures concerns the application of food safety and animal and plant health regulations. The Agreement is an elaboration of 1994 GATT provisions, in particular Art.XX(b). It could become pertinent to forests because among its purposes are the protection of plants form pests or diseases and to protect human health form plant-carried diseases. Together with the 1995 TBT Agreement, it provides for a regime on product import restrictions. Under the TBT, Governments may decide that international standards are not appropriate because of, for example, fundamental technological problems. There is uncertainty about the role of "eco-labelling" criteria in TBT, since TBT covers mandatory rules and standards and Eco-labelling is often on a voluntary basis. The CTE is of the opinion that eco-labelling is permitted, if rules on eco-labelling do not give preference to national products compared to imported products . Another recent WTO Agreement which might have implications for forests is the Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures. It creates three categories of subsidies and remedies, including permissible subsidies which are non-actionable and non-countervailable if they are structured according to criteria intended to limit their potential for distortion. Government assistance to meet environmental requirements is included in this category of subsidies, provided that such assistance meets certain conditions. The Subsidies Agreement includes attention for adapting existing facilities to meet new, government-imposed environmental requirements which result in greater constraints and financial burdens on such firms. There is an ongoing discussion if trade experts, within the framework of WTO, are capable to discuss legitimacy and effectiveness of certain trade measures incorporated in an MEA. Within CTE there seems to be a reasonable agreement to accept the role of environmental experts to judge if the trade measures suggested are most effective to reach intended environmental goal, if the MEA: 1) is open for participation of all States; 2) preferably negotiated under UN auspices; and 3) various categories of States (developed-developing countries, consumers - producers) are represented. If this is the case, the role of WTO could in principle be limited to review against the chapeau of Art. 20 GATT, and not against the more restrictive wording of arts XX(b) and (g). The CTE Report states on this issue: -Views differed on whether any modifications to the provisions of the multilateral trading system are required ... This matter should be kept under review.- B. REGIONAL Environment, Sustainable Development 11. Geneva Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution Protocol to the 1979 Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution on Long-Term Financing of the Co-operative Programmes for Monitoring and Evaluation of the Long-Range Transmission of Air Pollutants in Europe (EMEP) Convention EMEP Adoption: 13 November 1979 28 September 1984 Entry into force: 16 March 1983 28 January 1988 Parties: 43 (03/1998) 37 Text: 18 ILM 1442 1491 UNTS 167 Website: http://www.unece.org/env http://www.dainet.de/bfh/icpfor/icpfor.htm Prot.Sulphur Prot.Nitrogen Prot.OrgCmp Prot.SulphurII Adoption: 8 July 1985 31 Oct. 1988 18 Nov. 1991 14 June 1994 Entry /force: 2 Sept. 1987 14 Feb. 1991 29 Sept. 1997 not yet in force Parties: 21 25 17 -- Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution (LRTAP) has been negotiated under the auspices of the UN Economic Commission for Europe. It addresses the issue of acid rain. The text of the Convention itself is rather weak, especially regarding implementation and further actions to be taken by Parties; subsequently it was supplemented by five Protocols to give "teeth" to the Convention: - Co-operative Programme for the Monitoring and Evaluation of the Long-Range Transmissions of Air Pollutants in Europe (EMEP) (1984) - Protocol to the 1979 Convention on LRTAP on the Reduction of Sulphur Emissions or Their Transboundary Fluxes by at Least 30 Per Cent (1985) - Protocol Concerning the Control of Emissions of Nitrogen Oxides or their Transboundary Fluxes (1988) - Protocol on the Control of Emissions of Volatile Organic Compounds and their Transboundary Fluxes (1991) - Protocol on Further Reduction of Sulphur Emissions (1994) The Cooperative Programme (EMEP) is meant to monitor sulphur dioxide and related substances and to develop and use comparable or standardised monitoring procedures, and establish monitoring stations as part of an international programme. The other four protocols establish more detailed commitments in relation to particular substances. The Convention can be seen as one of the first adoptions of the -framework-protocol- approach. Relevance of the Convention to Forests The Convention and its subsequent protocols are adopted in response to evidence of widespread damage in parts of the ECE region to natural resources, including forests, caused by acidification of the environment from sulphur dioxides, nitrogen oxides and other pollutants, caused by the combustion of fossil fuels. IPF-IV (1997) noted that airborne pollution is affecting forest health in many parts of the world in addition to Europe. It was agreed that the potential impact on forest health from inputs of nutrients and airborne pollutants, acting in combination with other processes, such as natural weathering and leaching, should be taken into account in forest planning and management. Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments There are direct links with the both the Ozone and Climate regimes. The definition of "air pollution" in LRTAP is broad enough to include atmospheric emissions of greenhouse gasses and ozone depleting substances as "air pollutant". Another illustration is the 1991 Protocol on Volatile Organic Compounds. According to this Protocol, which recently entered into force, Parties are required, within 5 years, to apply the best available technology which is economically feasible to stationary sources in areas where international tropospheric ozone standards are exceeded. The Protocol includes a provision which states that Parties are not relieved from obligations to reduce emissions that may contribute significantly to climate change or ozone depletion. Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests The detailed monitoring network set up under EMEP is important to observe and evaluate the impact of airborne pollution on forest health, and developed techniques for monitoring and analysing airborne causes of deforestation and forest degradation. Under the Convention, a Working Group on Effects has been established (1985) which oversees, inter alia, the International Cooperative Programme for Assessment and Monitoring of Air Pollution Effects on Forests, which coordinates annual surveys of forest condition, such as a monitoring programme for the crown condition of European forests. Its objectives are to collect comprehensive and comparable data on changes in forests under actual environmental conditions through both large-scale assessment and monitoring on permanent sample plots; and to determine cause-effect relationships through research and monitoring. Detailed annual transnational and national surveys on forest condition have been conducted. The 1988 Nitrogen Protocol introduced an innovation in the form of environmental quality standards, aiming at establishing levels beyond which pollution is not permitted. This approach sets targets for acceptable levels of environmental interference by setting - critical loads- which can be translated into individual country targets [Art.2]. IPF-IV welcomed the widespread application of the critical loads approach adopted under LRTAP, and commended the approach for consideration by other States whose forests are or may be affected by air pollution. IPF-IV encouraged countries to adopt a preventative approach to the reduction of damaging air pollution, which may include long-range transboundary air pollution, in national strategies for sustainable development, and further encouraged the development of methods for the assessment and monitoring of national-level criteria and indicators for airborne pollutants in the context of sustainable forest management; it also recommended countries to consider entering into international agreements on the reduction of long-range transboundary air pollution, and that existing regional programmes monitoring the impact of airborne pollution on forest health in affected countries could be extended to other regions. 12. Treaty for Amazonian Cooperation Adoption: 3 July 1978 Entry into force: 2 August 1980 Parties: 8 Text: 17 ILM (1978), 1045 Website: http://www.spt-tca.org. Nature, scope and objectives of the Treaty The Treaty for Amazonian Cooperation has been adopted by the eight Amazonian Basin States and is not open to adherence. Its primary objective is to promote the harmonious development of the Amazonian region; it secondary objective is to permit an equitable distribution of the benefits of that development among the Contracting Parties, as well as the conservation of the environment and the "conservation and rational utilisation of the natural resources of those countries."[Art.I] . To protect the region's flora and fauna, the Parties are to rationally plan their exploitation on the basis of scientific research and the exchange of information.[Art.VII] Relevance of the Treaty to Forests The Amazon basin has a variety of ecosystems harboring more than 50% of the world-s terrestrial biodiversity. The Treaty creates a framework to take joint action in their development in a manner which is equitable, preserves the environment, and achieves the rational utilisation of their respective natural resources, including forests. The Parties declare their sovereign right to the exclusive use of and utilization of their natural resources.[Art.IV] Scientific research and exchange of information is to be promoted, to ensure that the exploitation of the flora and fauna of the Amazon region is rationally planned so as to maintain the ecological balance within the region and preserve the species.[Art.VII] Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments A forest conservation programme in cooperation with the Central American Forest Convention has been established. The 1995 Declaration of Lima promotes joint discussion within the framework of the Amazon Cooperation Treaty for the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity, and establishes an institute for research and protection of Amazon genetic resources. There are several other links with the CBD such as the 1996 meeting on promoting the sustainable utilization of the biodiversity of fruits and vegetables of the Amazon region. On indigenous people, the 1995 Declaration reiterated the importance and respect assigned by the governments to the rights of indigenous populations and local communities, to preservation of their cultural identities, to the recognized value of traditional knowledge, and to protect and safeguard their -habitat- and improve quality of life and living conditions. Developments Within the Framework of the Treaty with Relevance to Forests In 1989 the Parties adopted the Amazon Declaration, by which they reaffirm the sovereign right of each country to manage freely its natural resources, and reiterate that the Amazon heritage must be preserved through the rational use of resources of the region, so that present and futures generations may benefit from this legacy of nature. It declared that the defence of the Amazonian environment was one of the essential objectives of the treaty, though provides little guidance however as to how that objective is to be attained, or what it means in practice. The emphasis is rather on linking environmental protection and economic development, in particular by denouncing the burden of foreign debts owed by countries of the region. The Amazon Declaration objects to conditionalities imposed in the allocation of international resources, and emphasized that concerns expressed in highly developed countries in relation to the Amazon environment will have to be translated into financial and technological support. Also in 1989, in the Declaration of San Francisco de Quito, the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the eight States declare that they are aware of the great importance of the Amazonian ecosystems for the point of view of their biodiversity, their endemism, and their fragility. They underscore the need to conserve and develop maintenance for the ecosystems and their ecological processes and to establish joint environmental preservation policies to preserve the soils, flora, fauna, water resources, climatic conditions, and all natural resources in general. They decide to form a Special Commission for the Amazon Environment, so that each State may achieve prevention of -the deterioration of Amazon natural resources, particularly deforestation and soil degradation.- Within the framework of the Treaty, five other Special Commissions have been established, including the Special Commission of the Amazon Region on Indigenous Affairs. Further, several regional projects and consultation processes have been instigated, such as on "forests, trees and rural communities", "training for the sustainable use of the Amazon biodiversity", and on agroforestry. Under the auspices of the Amazon Cooperation Treaty, numerous cooperation programmes have been and are being developed. In 1992, an experts meeting was held to elaborate a regional strategy for the Reasonable Use of Amazon Forests. It requires each Amazon State to undertake particular strategic actions regarding forestry and instructs the Special Commission on the Environment to develop and implement a specific Forestry Programme. In 1995, a Work Plan has been adopted by the Ministers of Foreign Affairs which, intern alia, creates a permanent secretariat, establishes a financial mechanism and an institute for research and protection of genetic resources, instigates a joint program to promote education and environmental awareness at school level, and continues to identify and promote with a view to adopt C&I for sustainability of the Amazon forest. The 1995 Declaration of Lima includes 4 paragraphs on the Amazon forest which: - highlight the progress made on C&I (Tarapoto Proposal); - impel, once discussions at the national level have been concluded, the adoption of a regional document on C&I for sustainability of the Amazon forest; - recognize the inestimable repository for the food, chemical and pharmaceutical industries existing in the amazon rain forests, as well as the urgent need to develop sustainable production systems based on both timber and non-timber forest resources; and - design soil conservation and improvement plans and forests strategies for the region. The Treaty for Amazonian Cooperation is becoming increasingly important for the forests of the Amazon region. Its effective implementation is enhanced by the acquiring of necessary funds, the great variety of projects, and the organisational structure under the Treaty. The Treaty establishes an important political forum. Further implementation of programmes and projects would be relevant to forests. 13. Regional Convention for the Management and Conservation of the Natural Forest Ecosystems and the Development of Forest Plantations Note: At the time of preparing this Background Document there was not enough information available about this Regional Convention for a thorough analysis. This omission will be corrected in any future version of this Document. Adoption: 29 October 1993 Entry into force: Not yet in force Parties: -- Text: IUCN Database No. G-993102900 Website: http://www.ccad.org.gt (Central American Commission on Environment and Development) Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The Convention is open for signature to States of the Central American region and has six signatories. The objectives of the Convention are 1) to promote national and regional mechanisms that will prevent a change in land use of those areas covered with forests that are occupying lands with forestry potential, and to recover deforested areas; 2) to establish a homogenous soil classification system, through the reorientation of settlement policies in forests lands; 3) the discouragement of actions that favour forest destruction in lands with forestry potential; and 4) promotion of land-use planning processes and of sustainable options.[Art.2] The signatories reaffirm their sovereign right to proceed to use, manage and develop their forests in agreement with their own policies and regulation, as a function of their needs to development, conserving and sustainably using their forests as a social and economic function while ensuring that their activities do no cause environmental damages to their own or other countries in the region. The Convention will oblige the Parties to promote participation of all interested parties, including inhabitants of forested areas in the planning, implementation and evaluation of national forest policies, and to recognize their rights, obligations and needs; and it will strengthen the application of national forest policies and strategies. The Central American Commission on Environment and Development is the main executive organ of the Convention. [Art.7] Relevance of the Convention to Forests The Convention considers the Central American region the most important deposit of genetic wealth and biodiversity in the world; on the other hand, it recognizes that millions of Central Americans live in poverty conditions. It is considered that the genetic diversity, scenic value, potential to produce timber and non-timber goods can be the basis for not only conserving forest resources, but also for making them contribute, in a significant and sustainable manner, to abate underdevelopment in Central America: Forests should contribute to increasing the quality of life of the Central American people. [Preamble] Links and Cooperation with other Forest-related Instruments Cooperation with the Amazonian Cooperation Treaty has been established. Further, links with the Conventions on biodiversity and desertification are regarded as necessary (Latin American and Caribbean Forestry Commission). Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests The establishment of the Central American Council on Forests and Protected Areas, as well as the further developments in the regional process on Criteria and Indicators are important results. The 1994 Declaration between Central American States and the USA on Sustainable Development institutes cooperation on the following 4 sectors: conservation of Biodiversity, energy, environmental legislation, economical sustainable development. In 1995, a project grant agreement between the USA and the CCAD has been concluded for the financing of projects to implement the above Declaration 14. Protocol 10 on Sustainable Management of Forests Resources of the Agreement Amending the Fourth APC-EC Convention of Lome' Adoption: 4 November 1995 Entry into force: Not yet in force Parties: -- Text: The ACP-EU Courier No.155, 1996 Website: Not known Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Convention The Convention of Lome' between ACP States (Africa, Caribbean and Pacific) and the European Union has been renegotiated four times. Lome'-I was concluded in 1975, Lome'-IV in 1990, and the Agreement amending the Fourth APC-EC Convention of Lome' was signed in Mauritius in 1995. It has been signed by 70 ACP States and 15 European States, and has not yet entered into force. The 1995 Agreement contains Protocol 10 on the sustainable management of forest resources. Relevance of the Convention and Protocol 10 to Forests Title II, Chapter 2 on Drought and Desertification control [Arts.54-57] places great emphasis on the role of restoration of the natural environment, and on forestry and agroforestry in combatting drought and desertification. Most relevant for forests is Protocol 10 on the sustainable management of forests resources. It contains an environmental and a trade section. The environmental part (Art.2) focuses on tropical forest and their biodiversity, interests of local populations, conservation and sustainable management, forest management, and re-afforestation. It also recognizes areas where efforts will be concentrated on: research and institution-building in the forestry sector, and the development and implementation of national action plans to improve the management, conservation and sustainable management of forests. The trade section (Art.3) acknowledges the importance of timber and timber products for the economies of the ACP States, and acknowledges the following areas of concentration: (a) improving timber trade and marketing from forests under sustainable development; (b) development of certification systems for tropical timber as part of envisaged internationally harmonized certification systems for all kind of timber and timber products; (c) supporting measures to increase the share of tropical timber and timber products from sustainable sources; (d) diversifying international trade in tropical timber; (e) developing ACP national policies aimed at sustainable use and preservation of tropical timber producing forests and their genetic resources ans maintaining an ecological balance; and (f) access to and transfer of technology as well as technical cooperation. Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments With Protocol 10, the Parties acknowledge the importance and the need for the rational management of forests resources with a view to ensuring a long-term sustainable development of forests in ACP States in conformity with the Rio Declaration, the Forest Principles, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Convention on Biological Diversity and the UN Desertification Convention. Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests No developments, since the Convention has not yet entered into force. However, implementation of Protocol 10 could play an important role for the forests located in the ACP States. It attempts to provide a balanced approach of various functions of forests. 15. Convention on the Protection of the Alps (Alpine Convention) Protocol for the Implementation of the Alpine Convention 1991 in the Area of Mountain Forests Alpine Convention Mountain Forest Protocol Adoption: 7 November 1991 27 February 1996 (8 States) Entry into force: 6 March 1995 not yet entered into force Parties: 5 (01/1997) - Text: 31 ILM (1992), 767 IUCN Database 991:83 Website: not available (No English text of Protocol available yet) Nature, scope and objectives of the Convention The Alpine Convention is intended as an international effort to protect the multi-national domain that is the Alps in its entirety and not simply within national boundaries, the Alps are treated as a "uniform geographical are within Europe", in order to avoid uneven competition an division along national lines, they are characterized as an international region to be protected along natural, cultural, historical, economic and recreational lines.[Preamble] The Alpine Convention is an environmental treaty. The main objective of its Parties is to pursue a comprehensive policy for preservation and protection of the Alps by applying the principles of prevention, payment by the polluter, and cooperation, through the prudent and sustained use of resources.[Art.2.1] In order to achieve this Parties will take measures in a wide range of areas, including mountain forests: "to preserve, reinforce and restore the role of forests, in particular their protective role, by improving the resistance of forests ecosystems mainly by applying natural forestry techniques and preventing utilization detrimental to forests, taking into account the less favourable economic conditions in the Alpine region."[Art.2.2.8] Also measures to reduce soil damage are to be taken, in particular by applying agricultural and forestry methods which do not harm the soil.[Art.2.2.4] Another objective is to respect, preserve and promote the cultural and social independence of the indigenous population of the Alps. The Convention demonstrates the elements of a framework convention, and is accompanied by Protocols of implementation which define specifically the binding obligations of the Parties, each centred at a specific theme. Because of its nature as a framework convention, the obligations accepted by State parties remain very general. In accordance with Art.2(3) these obligations are defined at the level of Protocols, which delineate measures to implement the terms of the Convention. Work on the Protocols began even before the Convention entered into force, with parallel negotiations, with the result that three Protocols were opened for signature at the same time. Relevance of the Convention to Forests The Alpine Convention aims at incorporating traditional farming and forestry practices adapted to the small-scale environmental conditions which preserve the ecological soundness of the Alps into the modern world. The objective of the 1996 Mountain Forest Protocol is to preserve mountain forests as a natural ecosystem, to develop and expand it if necessary, and to improve its stability.[Art.1] In the Preamble, the role of mountain forests is recognized as representing a form of vegetation providing effective protection against natural dangers such as erosion; it is further stated that forests absorb CO2 from the atmosphere for the production of wood and in this manner fixates carbon for a long time. Parties are aware that mountain forests are indispensable for a balanced regional climates, cleaning of the air, and water management. It is also recognized that mountain forests have a recreational function. They are a renewable energy source, but also represent an essential source for work and income in rural areas. Mountain forest ecosystems are recognized as important habitats for a great variety of species of flora and fauna. The Parties undertake to ensure above all: natural regeneration of the forests; a well structured tree collection, which are adapted to their location; planting of local mountain plan species; and prevention of soil erosion and soil compacting through appropriate exploitation procedures.[Art.1(2)] In Article 2, Parties agree to consider the objectives of the Protocol in their other policies, especially in the following areas: - reduction of air pollution; - ungulates are only allowed at a limited level so that mountain forests can regenerate without special protection measures, possible re-introduction of certain species of carnivores; - the conservation of a healthy mountain forest has preference above existent mountain grasslands; - recreational functions should be limited to the extent that they do not interfere with the conservation and the natural regeneration of mountain forests; - sustainable exploitation and use of mountain forests is encouraged; - prevention of forest fires; and - sufficient and qualified personnel to take care of all functions of forests. Links and Cooperation with other Forest-related Conventions The Protocol makes a link between the role of mountain forests as carbon sink (UNFCCC), and as habitat for a great diversity of species of flora and fauna (CBD). [Preamble] Developments Within the Framework of the Convention with Relevance to Forests Since the adoption of the Protocol no relevant developments regarding its implementation took place. However, when the Mountain Forest Protocol to the Alpine Convention enters into force it could form a comprehensive framework for the region regarding its forests. It attempts to provide a balanced approach between conservation and economic functions of mountain forests, and stresses the need for international cooperation. It contains also provisions on monetary compensation in order for States to implement the protocol, for example when designating an area as forest reserve.[Arts.10-11] Trade, Economic Integration 16. North American Free Trade Agreement Between the Government of the United States, the Government of Canada and the Government of the United Mexican States North American Agreement on Environmental Co-operation NAFTA NAAEC Adoption: 17 December 1992 13 September 1993 Entry into force: 1 January 1994 1 January 1994 Parties: 3 3 Texts: 32 ILM (1993), 289, 605 and 1480 Website: http://www.nafta-sec-alena.org http://www.cec.org Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Agreement The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) creates a free trade zone encompassing Mexico, Canada and the United States. In contrast to the relatively large number of international environmental agreements that contain provisions dealing with trade, international trade agreements rarely address environmental matters. However, NAFTA places the goal of trade liberalization in the context of the over-arching goal of sustainable development. NAFTA's Preamble specifically provides that the agreement is intended to "Contribute to the harmonious development of world trade ... in a manner consistent with environmental protection and conservation; ... promote sustainable development...; strengthen the development and enforcement of environmental laws and regulations." Relevance of the Agreement to Forests NAFTA states that failure of environmental protection is an unacceptable means of encouraging investment and development.[Art.114.2] The North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation (NAAEC) supplements the NAFTA and commits the Parties to a series of obligations and institutions intended to advance both environmental protection and the environmental sustainability of NAFTA-related trade. Specifically, the NAAEC goals include the promotion of sustainable development, support for the environmental objectives of the NAFTA, and promotion of transparency and public participation in the development and enhancement of environmental protection. The NAAEC is designed to raise environmental standards and to create a dispute settlement mechanism to address failures to enforce environmental laws and regulations: while it is not necessary to protect the environment to protect trade it is often necessary to regulate trade to protect the environment. NAAEC establishes the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC), which mandate includes to address regional environmental concerns; prevent potential trade and environmental conflicts; and promote the effective enforcement of environmental law. Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Conventions Climate Change: Statement of Intent to Cooperate on Climate Change and Joint Implementation (Council Resolution 95-6); 1997 Project on North American Cooperation on Greenhouse Gases Emissions Trading. Biodiversity: Project development (from 1996) of a North American Biodiversity Information Network. CITES: Under the 1997 Enforcement Cooperation Program is a section on capacity building for the enforcement of CITES. GATT/WTO: NAFTA deals explicitly with the interrelationship between international environmental agreements (MEAs) and trade rules. Art.104 and its annexes attempt to realize environmental protection. Art.104 provides that in the event of an inconsistency between NAFTA and the trade provisions of 5 listed MEAs, the obligation of a party under the MEA "shall prevail to the extent of the inconsistency". Under the five MEAs are the Montreal Protocol to the Vienna Convention and CITES. Other MEAs may be added through unanimously consent of the NAFTA Parties. Developments Within the Framework of the Agreement with Relevance to Forests The North American Fund for Environmental Cooperation (Council Resolution 95-9) was established for the purpose of directly engaging "the energy and the imagination" of the people in North America in achieving the goals and objectives of the NAAEC. The Fund got an "overwhelming response" and supported 35 projects [1997 Annual Program and Budget]. Forest related projects could fall under its scope. The Project on North American Air Monitoring and Modelling (from 1995) includes attention to long-range transboundary air pollution and its harmful effects on the environment, including forests. Although NAAEC contains no direct reference to forests, it provides in its objectives for, inter alia, increased cooperation to better conserve, protect, and enhance the environment, including wild fauna and flora; protection and improvement of the environment, promotion of sustainable development; avoidance of creating trade distortions or new trade barriers; and public participation in the development of environmental laws: all of these objectives could have direct relevance to forests. Its elaborate Part Five on consultation and resolution of disputes regarding a "persistent pattern of failure" by a Party to effectively enforce its environmental law could be applied in forest-related matters. 17. Treaty Establishing the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa Adoption: 5 November 1993 Entry into force: 8 December 1994 Parties: 20 Member Countries Text: available at email@example.com Website: http://www.comesa.int Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Treaty The Treaty establishing the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) marks a new stage in the process of economic integration of the region. COMESA aims at consolidation of economic cooperation through the implementation of common policies and programmes aimed at achieving sustainable growth and development. The goal is eventually to arrive at an Economic Community. COMESA established a clearing house mechanism and various organs, including a Court of Justice and 12 Technical Committees. Before the year 2000, all internal trade tariffs and barriers will be removed (free trade area), and by 2004 a common external tariff will be introduced. Relevance of the Treaty to Forests Chapter 16 [Arts.122-126] on "Cooperation in the development of natural resources, environment and wildlife" has relevance to forests. With Art.122.2 Member States recognise that economic activity is often accompanied by environmental degradation, excessive depletion of resources and serious damage to natural heritage and that a clean as well as attractive environment is a prerequisite for long-term economic growth. Art.123 on Cooperation in Management of Natural Resources includes in its para.2 the conservation and management of forests: "123.2 The Member States agree to take necessary measures to conserve and manage forests, through the (a) adoption of common policies for the conservation and management of natural forests, industrial plantations and nature reserves; (b) exchange of information on natural forests and industrial plantations development and management; (c) joint promotion of a common forestry practice within the Common Market; (d) joint utilisation of forestry training and research facilities; (e) adoption of common regulations for the preservation and management of all catchment forests within the Common Market; and (f) the establishment of uniform regulations for the utilisation of forestry resources in order to reduce the depletion of the natural forests and avoid desertification within the Common Market." COMESA adopted five priority areas (1994) for the next five to ten years: - increase in productivity in industry to create more jobs and wealth - increase in agricultural production - development of transport and communications infrastructures - new programmes for trade promotion, expansion and facilitation - development of information data bases covering all sectors of the economy. Chapter 16 of COMESA has great potential to address forest issues in the region. Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Conventions The COMESA Secretariat considers it as its role to take the lead in assisting its member States, through promotion of regional integration, to make the adjustments necessary for them to become part of the global economy within the framework of WTO regulations. The WTO Committee on Trade and Development has handled the notification of the COMESA preferential arrangement. IV. NON-LEGALLY BINDING INSTRUMENTS AND MECHANISMS WITH RELEVANCE TO FORESTS 18. Non-legally Binding Authoritative Statement of Principles for a Global Consensus on the Management, Conservation and Sustainable Development of All Types of Forests Adopted: 14 June 1992 Agreed by: 176 States (UNCED) Text: UN Doc. A/CONF.151/26 (Vol.III) Website: http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/iff Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Principles The Non-Legally Binding Authoritative Statement of Principles for a Global Consensus on the Management, Conservation and Sustainable Development of all Types of Forests (the Forest Principles), is one of the instruments adopted at 1992 UNCED. After lengthy discussions no consensus was reached on a binding instrument, and the Forest Principles were explicitly qualified as "non-legally binding" thus they can be regarded as of limited legal authority and content. The Forest Principles represent a first global consensus on forests, which may or may not serve as the basis for a future legal instrument. They apply to all types of forests, and provide that forest issues must be dealt with in a holistic and balanced manner. The principles do not internationalise forests or state that forests are a common concern of mankind. Instead, they note that "their sound management and conservation is of concern to the Governments of the countries to which they belong and are of value to local communities and to the environment as a whole".[Preamble para.(f)] Consistently through the Statement runs the theme that forest issues are a matter for national, rather than international policies. [see, inter alia, Principles 2(a), 3(a), 5(a), 6(b), 8(d), 8 (f), 8(h) and 9(c)] Relevance of the Principles to Forests The Forest Principles are since their adoption in 1992 regularly invoked as representing global consensus and have since then gained authority. Together with Chapter 11 of Agenda 21 (below under 19), the Statement of Forest Principles form the basis for discussions and consensus-building within IPF and IFF (below under 20). Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments The Statement of Forest Principles itself does not include explicit references to other forest-related instruments. The Principles aspire to encompass a holistic approach to forests. Some of the Principles cover areas that are already regulated in other international legal instruments. However, none of these instruments sets or implements a global forest agenda or represents a global consensus on the management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests. 19. Agenda 21 Adopted: 14 June 1992 Agreed by: 176 States (UNCED) Text: UN Doc. A/CONF.151/26/Rev.1 (Vol.I) Website: http://www.un.org.esa/sustdev Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Instrument Agenda 21 is one of the three instruments adopted at 1992 UNCED. The others are the Rio Declaration and the Statement of Forest Principles (see above under 18). Agenda 21 is a non-binding blueprint and action plan for a global partnership for sustainable development, to which end it constitutes an extensive series of programme areas setting out the basis for action, objectives, activities and means of implementation. It can be regarded as a consensus document negotiated by the international community over a period of two years and reflects the integrated approach of matters pertaining to environment and development. 1997 UNGASS reaffirmed that Agenda 21 remains the fundamental programme of action for achieving sustainable development. Relevance of the Instrument to Forests Agenda 21 is non-binding, intended to give guidance on a broad range of forest issues, and is used together with the Forest Principles as a basis for negotiations in the Commission on Sustainable Development, the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests and the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests. On the national level it gives guidance for issues to be included in national forestry plans. Chapter 11 of Agenda 21, entitled "Combatting deforestation" is most relevant to forests. Regarding legal aspects it includes a call for more effective measures at the national level improve and harmonize legislative measures and instruments [11.1]; review and revise forest measures in order to relate them to other land uses and legislation [11.3(c)]. It states that capacity-building activities, needed to implement the programme activities of Chapter 11, to include policy and legal frameworks [11.19]. Chapter 11 further calls for facilitating and supporting the effective implementation of the Forest Principles, and for considering the need for and feasibility of all kind of appropriate internationally agreed arrangements to promote international cooperation on forest management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests, on the basis of implementation of the Forest Principles.[11.12(e)] Chapter 11 is dived into four programme areas which more or less repeat the content of the Forest Principles. The first programme area is intended to sustain the multiple roles and functions of all types of forests, the second is to enhance the protection, sustainable management and conservation of all forests and "green" degraded areas through rehabilitation, afforestation and reforestation; the third will promote efficient use and assessment to recover the full value of goods and services provided by forests; and the fourth is to establish and strengthen planning, assessment and systematic observation. Besides Chapter 11, many other chapters of Agenda 21 include references to forests: Chapters 5, 7-10, 12-18, 24, 26, 32 and 40. Sometimes they just touch upon issues such as reafforestation, forest cover, or deforestation, at other places forest issues are given a more prominent role. The Secretary-General's report at CSD5 noted that "Chapter 11 of Agenda 21 urges countries to develop forest strategies and concrete plans of action for sustainable forest development. Specifically, it refers to the Forest Principles and contains a comprehensive description of the various policy areas that can address deforestation and promote sustainable forest management. The recommended measures cover a broad range of actions and emphasize the importance of ensuring the participation of affected population and interested groups in these actions. The Forest Principles and Chapter 11 are therefore regarded as providing a broad and balanced foundation for the conservation, management and sustainable development of all types of forests." Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments Chapter 11 includes references to areas under other instruments, such as ITTA and GATT. On the latter one para.11.24 points out that "cooperation and assistance (...) in technology transfer, specialization and promotion of fair terms of trade, without resorting to unilateral restrictions and/or bans on forests products contrary to GATT and other multilateral trade agreements, and the application of appropriate market mechanisms and incentives will help in addressing global environmental concerns." Many other Chapters of Agenda 21 include elements of international instruments with relevance to forest. Examples are to be found in Chapter 9 "Protection of the atmosphere" where reference is made to the Vienna Convention, the Montreal Protocol, and UNFCCC. It states that greater emphasis should be put on photo-oxidant damage to forests in establishing or strengthening regional agreements for transboundary air pollution control and international cooperation on emission control technologies [9.28(a)]; Chapter 12 on "Managing fragile ecosystems: Combatting desertification and drought" in which afforestation and reforestation activities are most important for combatting land degradation [12.15-12.25]; and Chapter 15 "Conservation of Biological Diversity", where forests are regarded as one of the ecosystems which contain much of the earth's biodiversity [15.2]. 20. Conclusions and Proposals for Action of the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests Adopted: 21 February 1997 Agreed by: 53 States (Members of the CSD/IFF) Text: UN Doc. E/CN.17/IFF/1997/12 Website: http://www.un.org/esa/sustdev/iff Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Conclusions and Proposals for Action The Ad hoc Intergovernmental Panel on Forests was established by CSD3 in 1995. It is worth noting that while only those counties that were members of the CSD during this time, were also members of the IPF. However, in practice, observer member States participated fully in the discussions and negotiations of the Panel. The Panel also provided opportunities for contribution by major groups. The Panel was established to pursue consensus and formulation of consensus on proposals for action in order to, inter alia, combat deforestation and forest degradation and to promote management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests. The Panel was also requested to promote cross-sectoral policy action at the international level consistent with the Forest Principles, taking into account the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development and Agenda 21 (see Section 18 and 19 above). The establishment of IPF was clearly a reflection of the consensus and trust building initiatives that had been undertaken since UNCED. States felt the need to further elaborate on the Forest Principles and Chapter 11 of Agenda 21. The mandate given to the Panel consists of five interrelated categories: I Implementation of UNCED decisions related to forests at the national and international level, including an examination of sectoral and cross-sectoral linkages; II International cooperation and financial assistance and technology transfer; III Scientific research, forest assessment and development of criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management; IV Trade and the environment relating to forest products and services; and V International organisations and multilateral institutions and instruments including appropriate legal mechanisms The 1997 Final Report of the IPF contained conclusions and some 135 proposals for action on all of the above categories. The conclusions of the IPF report reflected the overall thrust of the discussion in the Panel, while only the Proposals for Action were agreed to as a direct result of the negotiations. This is to some extent reflected in the fact that it proved to be difficult to reach full consensus on what action to engage in as a result of certain conclusions. The Final Report explicitly states that on certain issues in the areas of finance, trade and legal instruments no agreement was reached. Subsequently UNGASS decided to establish the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests with the objectives to: facilitate and promote the implementation of the IPF-s proposals for action; and to discuss the pending issues and other issues arising from the IPF process. Relevance of IPF's Proposals for Action to Forests The Panel's Proposals for Action represent a significant advance in the international discussions on forest and forest related issues and brought the emerging consensus from UNCED at a more advanced stage. The objectives of IPF's Proposals for Action are to complement, supplement and elaborate upon the Forest Principles and Agenda 21 with a view to facilitate their implementation. The Final Report of IPF was the culmination of two years of intergovernmental policy dialogue, and represents a significant advance in the international discussion of critical political and policy issues related to forests. IPF's Proposals for Action are non-binding, but intended to give guidance to countries through urging them to apply certain generally agreed upon concepts and/or principles when working towards sustainable forest management. The forest issue is closely interconnected with other cross-sectoral issues of Agenda 21 such as poverty, demographic pressures, women, biodiversity, climate change, desertification, mountain development, freshwater resources management, patterns of production and consumption, indigenous people, and trade. The management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests may be regarded as the progressive and balanced achievement of sustained economic growth, improved social equity and environmental protection. Accordingly, IPF stressed the importance of integrated forest policy development; public participation in decision-making including the full participation of interested groups such as indigenous people, industry and local communities; institutional capacity-building; and global partnerships involving many stakeholders. The Panel, in underlining the need for States to manage, conserve and develop their forests sustainably, incorporated cross-sectoral issues into all categories. It particularly stressed the value of national forest programmes within the wider context of integrated land use for achieving sustainable forest management and for implementing its Proposals for Action. IPF's Proposals for Action also form the starting point for the discussion that will take place within IFF at three substantive sessions. The two processes taken together will finally constitute a comprehensive representation of the current international consensus on forests. Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments Besides several references to the Forest Principles and Agenda 21, the Proposals for Action of the IPF include several explicit references to other international instruments. Among these instruments, the Biodiversity Convention is represented most prominently, for example, in such areas as: underlying causes of deforestation and forest degradation, the promotion of internationally acceptable understanding of traditional forest related knowledge, and advancing international understanding of the relationship between intellectual property rights and TFRK. The Proposals for Action also requested the COP of the CBD to take note of the work of various existing initiatives on criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management to ensure that the work of the CBD on developing and implementing biodiversity indicators would be consistent with and complementary to them. There were also reference to the CBD in the areas of international cooperation, research and technology transfer. The Proposals for Action relating to fragile ecosystems affected by desertification and drought, the Panel urged donors, international agencies and recipient countries to develop efficient and coordinated programmes of international cooperation related to forest affected by desertification and drought, within the context of the Desertification Convention. The Panel also invited the Committee on Science and Technology of UNCCD to support research on plant species for the mitigation of drought and desertification. In the area of impact of air-borne pollution on forests the Panel recommended that States consider entering into international agreements, as appropriate, on the reduction of long-range air pollution. In the area of international cooperation the Panel called for enhanced coordination, collaboration and complementarity of activities among international instruments related to forests, notably the CBD, UNFCCC, UNCCD and the ITTA. In the area of research the Panel called on the COPs of the CBD, UNFCCC and UNCCD to promote research and analysis undertaken by those Conventions and to address gaps in existing knowledge. With respect to trade, the Panel requested countries to undertake measures for improving market access for forest goods and services, including the reduction of tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade and that this has to be done in accordance with existing international obligations and commitments. It was while discussing the desirability of having a legally binding instrument on trade covering forest products form all types of forest that the Panel could not come to agreement on the course of action to be taken. The Panel could also not reach consensus on the question of the relationship between obligations under international trade agreement and national measures. IPF also agreed on Proposals for Action related to other forest related instruments. The Panel called on States to guide relevant international and regional institutions and those administering instruments, through their governing bodies, to accelerate incorporation into their relevant work programmes of the forest- related results of UNCED and of further progress achieved since then, and of the proposals for action recommended by the Panel. As regards a continued international policy dialogue on forests the Panel provided a set of options, including: to continue the dialogue in existing fora such as FAO and CSD; the establishment of an International Negotiating Committee; or to establish an intergovernmental forum on forests. This last option was agreed upon at UNGASS. As recommended by the Panel, governing bodies of organisations and instruments are encouraged to incorporate the implementation of the IPF-s Proposals for Action into their mandates and programmes. Countries are also encouraged to integrate recommendations into their national forest programmes. Governing bodies such as the ITTO Council of ITTA, the CBD and COFO have already acknowledged and recommended the inclusion of relevant Proposals for Action into their respective work programmes. 21. Forest Partnership Agreement (FPA) / National Forest Plan (nfp) These instruments have not been formally adopted yet, and no specific text exists Website: http://www.undp.org Nature, Scope and Objectives of the Combined Instruments The FPA concept was developed by UNDP in 1995 and further elaborated by an Expert Group under the guidance of the Forestry Advisory Group and IUCN. FPAs represent a multi-stakeholder concept: they are intent to serve as a mechanism to coordinate and structure the dialogue and interactions between relevant institutions and actors, within the context of the national forest policy frameworks for the achievement of sustainable forest management such as a nfp. FPAs are based on the assumption that partnership mechanisms are needed to integrate all relevant actors and institutions into the nfp process, and could ensure implementation of nfp by facilitating the coordination and cooperation of all relevant actors on a participatory basis. Two distinctive types of FPAs are to be distinguished: on the national and on the international level. On the national level, the objective is to integrate relevant policy, strategy and planning frameworks and the establishment of participatory privileges for relevant actors in the nfp process. FPAs would position the framework for the involvement of the private sector and other relevant non-governmental actors in the public nfp process. On the international level, an FPA is seen as regulating international involvement in support of the nfp process and thus ensuring that the relevant international players pay due regard to nfp instruments as implemented by a specific country. Its objectives are to integrate external contributions to the national forestry sector into the nfp process and to harmonize international planning approaches with national planning frameworks at the national level. The international FPA process is meant to be truly country driven whereby the donor coordinating process should become a part of national development planning. Relevance of the Combined Instruments to Forests The call for partnership, an essential element to reach sustainable development, as embodied in Principle 15 of the Rio Declaration has been reaffirmed in for example the 1997 Programme for the further implementation of Agenda 21. Its para.39 on forests states that there is an urgent need for -(a) Countries and international organizations and institutions to implement the proposals for action agreed by the Intergovernmental Panel, (...) in collaboration and through effective partnership with all interested parties, (...) (b) Countries to develop national forest programmes in accordance with their respective national conditions, objectives and priorities- in order to come at sustainable forest management. Sustainable forest management is a cross-sectoral policy issue and inadequate coordination and cooperation of relevant institutions and actors responsible for achieving sustainable forest management is a major problem. The 1997 Final Report of the IPF encourages countries to further develop the concept and practice of partnership, including partnership agreements, in the implementation of nfp-s one of the potential approaches for improved coordination between all national and international partners. The FPA concept has been introduced in Ecuador as pioneer country. Links and Cooperation with Other Forest-related Instruments Forest Partnership Agreements and national forest plans are mainly directed at the national level, where they could also be utilized to implement selected objectives of other international instruments with relevance to forests. 22. Processes on Criteria and Indicators The Forest Principles [para.8(d)] and Chapter 11 of Agenda 21 call for the identification of Criteria and Indicators (C&I) to be used to evaluate progress in efforts of States to practice sustainable forest management. Since then, a large number of national, regional and international initiatives have been undertaken. The definition of "criterion" and "indicator" is in all processes quite similar; there are strong common and conceptually comparable elements. In general, indicators show or reflect the state of the art as well as time-related changes. The criteria help to characterize SFM and the indicators .... Typically an indicator shows a quantitative change. As all aspects of forestry cannot be measured with quantitative indicators, some descriptive indicators have been formulated to reflect the change regarding legal, institutional and economic policy framework as well as informational means to implement the policy. A criterion describes the different aspects of sustainability at a conceptual level. It is a distinguishing element or a set of conditions or processes by which a forest characteristic or management is judged. The indicators show changes over time and demonstrate how well each criterion reaches the objective set for it. In 1995, FAO and ITTO organized an expert meeting on the possibilities of harmonization among the different sets of C&I. CSD5 (1997) stated that the "definition of criteria for SFM has led to a general agreement on the essential elements of forest management and on principles against which the sustainability of forests can be assessed. The identification of agreed-upon indicators serves as the basis for periodic, national-level assessment and monitoring of the overall effects of forest management indictors and the consequences of non-intervention. Monitoring progress of SFM against agreed criteria and indicators will allow action to be adjusted over time to better meet stated, overall aims and objectives in support of the various functions of forest..." More than 100 States are involved in the various regional processes associated with C&I. These processes demonstrate substantial progress toward a global acceptance on the subject, and an emerging political consensus on the contents and implementation of C&I. They made a significant contribution to tackling challenges related to SFM, and achieved noteworthy progress in the area of technical and scientific research. There are many more initiatives than ones listed below; CIFOR reviews, on an on-going basis, the various processes on C&I. There is a certain amount of cross-referencing between the different processes, each learning from other and all committing themselves to continuing research and to further improvements. The, mostly, six or seven criteria defined by the international processes described below are very similar. It is recognized, however, that the indicators which correspond to identified criteria should be closely linked to national conditions, needs and priorities, and therefore vary both between processes and among countries participating in them. Among others, the following international initiatives have been developed: 1) International Tropical Timber Organisation ITTO has produced three sets of guidelines on sustainable management of forests, in which the notion -principle- forms the basis of the term C&I in the other processes: a) for the conservation of biological diversity in tropical production forests; b) for the establishment and sustainable management of planted tropical forests; and c) for the sustainable management of natural tropical forests. These efforts complement other ITTO processes, including its objective to achieve SFM in forest producing tropical timber for international trade by the year 2000. The ITTO C&I are the first intergovernmental C&I, and are currently under revision, to be used as templates for national-level development of more stringent guidelines. 2) Helsinki Process The Helsinki Process is an European oriented process, for which each State has appointed a national coordinator. The institutional set- up also knows a liaison unit, a General Coordinating Committee, and a Scientific Advisory Group. The Helsinki Declaration of the Ministerial Conference on the Protection of Forests in Europe (1993) acknowledged the global dimension of European forests, which amount to approximately a quarter of the world-s forests, and the intention to "Participate in, and promote, international activities towards a global convention of the management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests." The implementation and follow-up on the 1990 and 1993 Ministerial Conferences resolutions are undertaken through national and Pan-European activities. Ongoing Pan-European activities include developing guidelines for SFM at the operational level, developing a work programme on conservation and enhancement of biological and landscape diversification for ecosystems, and preparing a report on the status of SFM in Europe. At the third Ministerial Conference in June 1998 the ministers will review progress, provide regional responses to the IPF-s action proposals, and emphasize socio-economic challenges in forestry. The following C&I were agreed to in 1994 and cover boreal, temperate and Mediterranean-type forests: a) maintenance and appropriate enhancement of forest resources and their contribution to global carbon cycles b) maintenance of forest ecosystem health and vitality c) maintenance and encouragement of productive functions of forests (wood and non-wood) d) maintenance, conservation and appropriate enhancement of biological diversity in forest ecosystems e) maintenance and appropriate enhancement of protection functions in forest management, notably soil and water f) maintenance of other socio-economic functions and conditions 3. The Montreal Process on Criteria an Indicators for SFM The Montreal Process is directed towards covering temperate ad boreal forests outside Europe. Nine meetings are held to date. A First Approximation Report of Montreal Process Countries was completed, which revealed that, for a large percentage of indicators, data are being collected and gaps identified, but that application, monitoring and capacity to apply C&I vary. In 1995, a set of 7 criteria and 67 indicators for sustainable forest management were approved. The selected criteria are: a) conservation of biological diversity b) maintenance of productive capacity of forest ecosystems c) maintenance of forest ecosystem health and vitality d) conservation and maintenance of soil and water resources e) maintenance of forest contribution to global carbon cycles f) maintenance and enhancement of long-term multiple socio-economic benefits to meet the needs of societies g) legal, institutional and economic framework for forest conservation and sustainable management 4. Tarapoto Proposal on C&I for the Sustainable Management of Amazon Forests In 1995, the Tarapoto Process was established for States which are signatories to the Treaty on Amazonian Cooperation (see above under section 12). The Tarapoto Proposal aims at facilitating the formulation of common policies, establishing common positions at meetings, preserving biodiversity and planning of sustainable development. National consultations to evaluate the Tarapoto Proposal are an important and ongoing part of the Tarapoto process, in order to analyse C&I in their economic, environmental and political contexts. The Tarapoto Proposal contains 12 criteria and 77 indicators for the sustainable management of Amazonian forests grouped as follows: I. National Level a) socio-economic benefits b) policies and legal institutional framework c) sustainable forest production d) conservation of forest cover and regional biological diversity e) conservation and integrated management of water and soil resources f) science and technology for the sustainable development of forests g) institutional capacity to promote sustainable development II. Management Unit Level h) legal and institutional framework i) sustainable forest production j) conservation of forests ecosystems k) local socio-economic benefits III. Services at Global Level l) economic, social and environmental services performed by Amazonian forests 5. African Timber Organisation The African Timber Organisation attempts to balance the need to reconcile the productive functions of forests with their environmental role. ATO, with CIFOR, is developing C&I at unit-level to improve market competitiveness in connection with certification. C&I will also be reflected in national forestry plans. Six countries have been selected as pilot countries to test the C&I. CIFOR is researching if C&I can be applied across different eco-regions, and is considering how the needs of forest-dwellers can be modified for community forestry. It is also investigating whether natural forest C&I can be applied to plantation forests. 28 criteria and 60 indicators for the sustainable management of African tropical forests have been developed, grouped around the following 5 major principles: a) sustainability of the forest and its multiple functions b) areas identified as permanent forest estate c) adequate management of forested estates d) maintenance of the main ecological functions of the forest e) definition of the rights and duties of all stakeholders 6. Leparterique Process for Central America Central American C&I cover a variety of forest types, including wetland forests, highland forests and conifer forests, and are founded on four principles: ensuring integration of peace and democracy; benefiting from experiences in other regions; cooperating with FAO; and encouraging international support. Under auspices of FAO and the Central American Commission for Sustainable Development, C&I for sustainable forest management in Central America have been developed, in particular for the States signatories to the Central American Treaty on Forests (see above under number 13) In 1997, seven principles for Sustainable Forest Organization in Central America were established: a) political responsibility b) forest maintenance and health c) contribution from forest d) maintenance of biological diversity e) forest production f) development of science and technology g) forest for people Also, two sets of C&I have been developed, one aimed at Central America, the other set for the national level. They are regarded as important characteristics for strengthening the full democratic participation of the Central American society 7. Dry Zone Africa Process The Dry Zone Africa regional process, was initiated in 1995 by FAO and UNEP. It proposed a set of C&I for sustainable forest management in sub-Saharan dry-zone Africa. The significance of C&I to individual countries in a regional context and the applicability of criteria are under discussion. The process is relatively new and faces a number of challenges, such as the identification of national focal points for the process, issues related to data collection, implementation capacity and limited financial resources. The following criteria have been proposed: a) maintenance and improvement of forest resources, including their contribution to global carbon cycles b) conservation and enhancement of biological diversity in forest ecosystems c) maintenance of forest ecosystem health, vitality and integrity d) maintenance and enhancement of production functions of forests and other wooded lands e) maintenance and improvement of protection functions in forest f) maintenance and enhancement of socio-economic benefits g) adequacy of legal, institutional and policies frameworks for sustainable forest management 8. Criteria and Indicators for Sustainable Forest Managment in the Near East C&I have only recently been introduced in the Near East, with the FAO/UNEP Workshop in 1996. Their application presents challenges due to the prevalent aridity and ecological, social and technical problems of the region. Emphasis was put on identification of the specific characteristics of the region. It was discussed that, among other things, foresters will have to be trained to apply the C&I; the elaboration of criteria, and particularly assessment and monitoring of indicators should be done in a cost-effective way; issues related to data collection and reporting; and the establishment of national focal points. The criteria identified are: a) extent of forest resources b) conservation of biological diversity in forest areas c) health, vitality and integrity d) productive capacity and functions e) protective and environmental functions f) maintenance and development of socio-economic functions and conditions g) legal and institutional framework V. FOUR TABLES ON THE INTERRELATIONSHIP BETWEEN INSTRUMENTS AND THE FUNCTIONS OF FORESTS, AND PRECONDITIONS TO FULFILL THESE FUNCTIONS The following four tables are designed in order to summarize the information on the twenty-one international instruments discussed above. They visualize: - the contents and implementation of the instrument, including additional protocols, decisions of the COP etc; - the relation of these instruments with the role and functions forests may fulfill; and - the relation of these instruments with the basic preconditions which are deemed necessary to meet the role and functions as identified before. TABLE I handles the global legally binding instruments with relevance to forests TABLE II is on the regional legally binding instruments with relevance to forests TABLE III deals with the non-legally binding instruments TABLE IV synthesizes tables I, II and III The shades of the segments of the tables indicate if the particular function of forests fulfill has been regulated by the international instrument and/or its implementation activities, on a relative basis. *** PLEASE NOTE THAT DUE TO FORMATTING DIFFICULTIES WE ARE NOT ABLE TO REPRODUCE THE TABLES HERE - PLEASE SEE HARD COPIES OF DOCUMENTS FOR TABLES ***** **************************************** VI .CONCLUDING REMARKS, INCLUDING INDICATION OF POSSIBLE DIRECTIONS One of the conclusions which can be drawn after analysis of the existing instruments with relevance to forests included in this Background Document, appears obvious from the tables: all functions and roles of forests have been regulated to some extent. The descriptive part demonstrates that many instruments have links or have established links on forest-related issues. On the other hand, the analysis also articulates the lack of coordination and the great dispersion in addressing forest-related issues. There does not exist any all-encompassing cohesive comprehensive legal instrument on forests. In all instruments discussed in this Background Document, certain functions or roles of forests, or preconditions to make optimal use of these functions, are omitted. Further, not all geographic regions are involved to the same extent. Broadly, there are four ways to regulate the gaps in the international forest arena: 1. It would be possible to adopt existing conventions to new circumstances, such as, for example, the Ramsar Convention developed itself into the direction of taking into accounts aspects of biological diversity. Agreed instruments are not static: conventions could extend themselves to forests, forests could fall under the scope of existing instruments. In practice though, their range of flexibility is quite often rather limited. Amendments are difficult to agree on, their procedures are lengthy processes; it is a form of renegotiation, which might disintegrate fragile balances within the context of a particular instrument. Further, since no legally binding instrument presents a truly holistic approach towards forests, there will always be some perspectives which will remain under represented. 2. Another possibility to fill gaps would encompass a piecemeal approach. In this case, areas with relevance to forests that have not been regulated are singled out and the particular segment becomes subject of an agreement. This strategy could also be applied to certain "under regulated" geographic regions. However, this approach could also encounter obstacles, most obvious demonstrated by the discussions within IPF and IFF: the more the interrelationships and integrative aspects of forests are accepted, the greater the tendency towards unacceptableness and infeasibility to confining international negotiations to only one angle of forests. 3. The option to reach a comprehensive agreement on forests is also being taken into account. With this approach, the "convention fatigue" of the international community comes to the foreground, mainly instigated by the failures of existing conventions to deliver. It is recognized that negotiations within an International Negotiating Committee (INC) are very costly and equally time consuming. They could represent a realistic danger of delaying current initiatives on forests, the negotiation of a global instrument could discourage regional and other existing initiatives, and it is argued it would be too inflexible by nature. The fear has been expressed, in particular by some NGOs, that a convention and its protracted negotiations would possibly lead to more trade in timber and more deforestation On the other hand, a comprehensive agreement on forests could be a way to take into account their holistic nature. Such an agreement would have an unifying influence among the plethora of instruments and initiatives; at this moment, it is barely feasible to have an overview. It could provide an opportunity to take all aspects of forests into account, all regions, and all views of relevant actors. The negotiations, adoption and subsequent implementation would definitely raise public and political expectations and awareness. The instrument could address the gaps currently existing, and provide a balance for all functions of forests. It could install unified procedures for reporting and monitoring, and provide a global framework for initiatives at other levels and in other fora. 4. The fourth option is to fill gaps with "soft-law instruments", which are non-legally binding. Soft law has played an important role in the evolution of international environmental law. Frequently, an area is regulated by a non-legally binding instrument first; upon the basis of the consensus regarding the developments and implementation of that instrument, a legally binding instruments often form the next stage. Soft law makes important contributions for crystallizing of emerging norms on a given subject and help, in turn, in securing an international environmental agreement with harder obligations later. On the other hand, a soft law instrument can be regarded as lacking requisite characteristics of international legal norms and are usually considered vague or imperfect provisions; often they are obscure or ambiguous and therefore politically convenient to participating States. VII. BIBLIOGRAPHY Kolk, A. "Forests in International Environmental Politics" , International Books, ISBN 90 5727 002 1 Committee on Forestry COFO-95/2 - Supp.4, 1995 "Assessing the advantages and disadvantages of a legally binding instrument on forests". Astrid Skala Kuhmann, September 1997, "The forest partnership agreement", via Support to International Programmes in Tropical Forestry, fax +49.6196.797333 David Humphreys, 1996, "Forest Politics - The Evolution of International Cooperation", Earthscan Publications Ltd., London, 1996, ISBN 1 85383 378 9 Office of the U.S. Trade Representative,August 1994, "The GATT Uruguay Round Agreements" Report on Environmental Issues, ISBN 0 16 045155 8 UNCTAD Secretariat, 1996, "Implications of the Uruguay Round for Trade in Wood and Wood Products", Doc. UNCTAD/COM/75 Markku Simula, June 1996, "Effective Coordination Mechanisms in Financing Sustainable Forestry Development", Report prepared for the Workshop on Financial Mechanisms and Sources of Finance for Sustainable Forestry. Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries, Portugal, November 1996, "The role of forestry in attaining the objectives of the Convention to Combat Desertification", Secretariat note no. 3. Expert meeting on rehabilitation of forest degraded ecosystems, "Lome' IV Convention as revised by the agreement signed in Mauritius", The ACP-EU Courier no. 155, January-February 1996, ISSN 1013-7335 Council of Europe Publishing 1996, "Pan-European Biological and Landscape Diversity Strategy", Nature and Environment, no. 74, ISBN 92-871-3046-9 Robert Housman, 1994, "Reconciling Trade and the Environment: Lessons from the North American Free Trade Agreement", UNEP Environment and Trade Series Ulrich Beyerlin and Thilo Marauhn, 1997, "Law-Making and Law-Enforcement in International Environmental Law after the 1992 Rio Conference", Erich Schmidt Verlag Berlin ISBN 3-503-04075-7 Philippe Sands, 1995, "Principles of International Environmental Law" Vol.I: Frameworks, standards and implementation,Manchester University Press, ISBN 0 7190 3483/1. Thomas Schoenbaum, April 1997, "International trade and the protection of the environment: the continuing search for reconciliation", American Journal of International Law, Vol.91 David Luff, 1996, "An overview of international law of sustainable development and a confrontation between WTO rules and sustainable development", Revue Belge de Droit International, 1996/1 Andre' Nollkaemper 1996, "Between the forests and the trees - an emerging international forest law", Jutta Brunne'e and Environmental Conservation 23(4). Guri Kristin Rosendal, 1993, "The Quest for a Global Forest Strategy: Barking up the wrong tree?", Fridtjof Nansens Institute, ISBN82-7613-056-9 Ed. by A.J. Grayson and W.B. Maynard, 1997, "The World's Forests - Rio + 5: International Initiatives towards Sustainable Management", Commonwealth Forestry Association, ISBN 0-9515059-2-0 Roger Sedjo and Brent Sohngen, April 1998, "How will Climate Change Impact the World's Forests?", at http://www.weathervane.rff.org/features/feature037.html. David Brand, 1998, "Potential Opportunities Generated by the Kyoto Protocol in the Forest Sector", Building 2, 423 Pennant Hills Road, Pennant Hills 2120, Australia, not published. Extensive use has been made of the websites mentioned in the text of this Background Document In addition, the full text of many treaties can be found on: http://www.sedac.ciesin.org http://www.tufts.edu/fletcher
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Date last posted: 5 December 1999 15:45:34