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United Nations Forum on Forest (UNFF), Risultati dei lavori della sessione 20 aprile – 1 maggio 2009

di - 12 agosto 2009
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Facendo seguito all’articolo pubblicato il 18 aprile 2009 sulla sessione del UNITED NATIONS FORUM ON FOREST (UNFF) del 20 Aprile / 1 maggio 2009, si riepilogano i risultati dei lavori della sessione in parola sulla base dei comunicati ufficiali:
1)        I 192 Stati Membri delle Nazioni Unite hanno concordato sulla necessità di intensificare l’azione di protezione globale delle foreste a livello mondiale da una serie di minacce ambientali, inclusi i cambiamenti climatici, la perdita della biodiversità e la desertificazione;
2)        Il Forum ha chiamato i partecipanti a migliorare e rafforzare i livelli di coordinamento e cooperazione per supportare le strategie di gestione sostenibile delle foreste (“sustainable forest management“) nell’ambito dei vari progetti di gestione dei cambiamenti climatici, della biodiversità e delle risorse idriche;
3)        Il Forum ha chiamato i partecipanti a censire e tutelare le foreste nazionali utilizzando “market – based approaches” per la produzione ed il consumo dei prodotti provenienti dalle foreste gestite con criteri di sostenibilità;
4)        Le analisi effettuate portano alle seguenti quantificazioni e considerazioni:

i) Secondo la United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization ogni anno vanno perduti 13 milioni di ettari di foreste a causa della deforestazione;
ii) Le foreste ospitano almeno l’80% di tutte le biodiversità terrestri;
iii) Alcune stime indicano che la deforestazione nelle foreste pluviali tropicali potrebbe portare a consuntivare perdite di 100 specie al giorno;
iv) “The carbon in forests exceeds the amount of carbon currently in the atmosphere. Forest ecosystems contained 638 billion tons (Gt) of carbon in 2005, with half (321 Gt) found in forest biomass and deadwood. Deforestation accounts for 35 per cent of carbon emissions in developing countries and 65 per cent in least developed countries. In 2004, the forest sector accounted for the release of approximately 8.5 Gt of carbon dioxide, mostly from deforestation, which contributes 17.4 per cent of all human-generated emissions”;
v) Il commercio in prodotti forestali ha raggiunto nel 2004 un valore di 327 miliardi di dollari rappresentando in tal modo il 3.7% del commercio globale di tutti i prodotti “commodity”;
vi) Secondo le stime della Banca Mondiale più di 1,6 miliardi di persone dipendono dalle foreste per la sussistenza, il lavoro e il reddito;
vii) I negoziati tra le varie delegazioni partecipanti al Forum relativi al finanziamento di un modello di “sustainable forest management” non hanno avuto buon fine e conseguentemente è stato deciso che il “Draft Text” di risoluzione sulle problematiche delle foreste sarà sottoposto all’attenzione della prossima sessione del Forum che si terrà nel gennaio 2011;
viii) Come preannunciato è stato presentato ufficialmente al Forum il nuovo Report IUFRO[1] “Adaptation of Forests and People to Climate Change – A Global Assessment Report”. Come si ricorderà tale Report contiene un serio allarme sul rischio, per il sistema mondiale delle foreste e per la sua fondamentale funzione di sinks di CO2, di gravi conseguenze negative derivanti dal Global Warming.

Riportiamo nel seguito i più significativi Key Messages contenuti nel Report coordinato della IUFRO:
a) Several projections indicate significant risks that current carbon regulating services will be entirely lost, as land ecosystems turn into a net source of carbon beyond a global warming of 2.5° C (upper stable scenarios and beyond) or more relative to pre-industrial levels. Moreover, since forests also release large quantities of carbon if deforested or impacted by other degrading stressors, they exacerbate climate change further;
b) The carbon-regulating services of forests are at risk of being lost entirely unless current carbon emissions are reduced substantially; this would result in the release of huge quantities of carbon to the atmosphere, exacerbating climate change. (…) Large reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels and deforestation are needed to ensure that forests retain their mitigative and adaptive capacities;
c) Increases in carbon sink strength are expected in some productive regions under intensive forest management such as central western Europe (…), while decreasing sink strength is projected for temperate forest areas facing increasing drought occurrence, such as southern western Europe(…), the southern part of the Russian Plain (…) and in ageing eastern North American forests (…);
d) Under scenarios of growth (‘business-as-usual’) or fast growth, the resulting rapid global change will continue to impact forests, with important consequences for the ecosystem structure, its biodiversity and its many provisioning, regulating and socio-economic services; these include hydrological regulation, carbon sequestration, fires, pests, pathogens and forest health in general as well as ecotourism and the subsistence livelihoods of indigenous people. (…) Several models project a significant risk (>40%) of losing entirely current carbon-regulating services, as land ecosystems turn globally into a net source of carbon beyond a global warming of 3°C or more relative to pre-industrial levels;
e) Despite uncertainties associated with current climate and ecosystem model projections, the associated changes in the provision of forest ecosystem services are expected to be significant in many parts of the world.
The vulnerability of forest system is related not just to the direct and indirect impacts of climate change, but also to anthropogenic impacts, particularly land-use change and deforestation, which are likely to be extremely important in many parts of the world. These will present significant social and economic challenge for affected communities and society as a whole, particularly among the forest-dependent poor, who are already highly vulnerable in many countries throughout the world, especially in the tropical and subtropical domains.
f) Failure of governance structures to promote sustainable forest management has the potential for reducing forest ecosystem services induced by climate-change impacts;
g) Forests provide essential services to support human well-being. They cover about a third of the Earth’s land surface, grow in many climates, store about half the total carbon contained in land ecosystems and, very likely, host the majority of terrestrial biodiversity. The impacts of future climate change on forest ecosystems and the goods and services they provide are therefore of major global concern.
h) The assessment of available scientific information in this report confirm that climate change is already affecting forest ecosystems and the services they provide, and will have increasing effects on them in the future. The ongoing climate change could put at risk essential ecosystem services, including carbon regulation and the maintenance of biodiversity; the loss of carbon-regulating services would seriously accelerate climate change;
i) Unmitigated climate change is likely to exceed the adaptive capacity of many forests in the course of the current century. On their own, therefore, adaptation measures will be insufficient for forests to adapt to climate change; large reductions in emissions from fossil fuels and deforestation are needed to preserve the adaptive capacity of forests and to enable them to continue making their essential contribution to the mitigation of climate change.

5)        Nei comunicati ufficiali si leggono i seguenti commenti sul Report coordinato dalla IUFRO:
The UNFF took note of the report and called for science-based information also for future UNFF session (…). Several key messages of the assessment are reflected in the resolution on ‘Forest in a changing environment’ adopted by the Forum. The Forum also invited the Global Forest Expert Panels initiative to continue to provide science-based information relevant to the themes of future UNFF sessions”.

Note

1.  International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO)

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