EcoInternet’s “End Ancient Forest Logging” Campaign Targets World Bank, WWF and Greenpeace for Their Role in Promoting Ancient Primary Rainforest Logging
— Do WWF and Greenpeace members realize they are supporting industrial logging of the world's last ancient rainforests? Until this changes, they should cancel their memberships.
By Rainforest Portal, a project of EcoInternet, http://www.rainforestportal.org/
Contact: Dr. Glen Barry, firstname.lastname@example.org
For years the World Bank, WWF and Greenpeace have put their faith in protecting the world's remaining ancient primary forests by reforming criminal industrial logging practices. These ancient forest logging apologists' policies of pursuing “sustainable forest management”, “forest certification” and “improved forest governance” has been pursued for nearly two decades. Yet, ancient forest logging remains out of control, severely damaging ecosystems and the climate, and providing few if any local benefits to rainforest dwellers. The climate crisis makes maintaining all intact rainforests even more important.
“The scientific literature and years of failed, ecologically and socially devastating tropical rainforest logging clearly show there is no such things as 'sustainable certified' ancient forest logging; and global ecological sustainability, successful climate change mitigation, maintaining fully intact rainforest ecosystems and species, and future survival of local rainforest dwellers and their eco-development options sadly depends upon confronting the global ancient forest logging apologist industry,” explains EcoInternet's Dr. Glen Barry.
“Logging primary forests for the first time results in species composition, structure and dynamics that are irreversibly diminished and much of their carbon is released. It is time to stop working to reform and instead shut down ancient forest logging, compensating not yet over-developed countries for this avoided deforestation and diminishment, and supporting community based small-scale eco-forestry activities.”
Africa's Congo Basin provides an example of ill-advised international forest conservation policy. The Congo contains the world's second largest rainforest; a haven for vital global biodiversity and ecosystem services, and a safeguard against runaway global warming. About 400 mammal species live there, including the world's largest populations of lowland gorillas, chimpanzees, bonobos and forest elephants. Some 655 bird species and over 10,000 plant species can be found.
It is terrible that in the DRC, Greenpeace supports a moratorium but not an end to industrial logging, that WWF continues to advocate and work with loggers to facilitate the “certified” diminishment of these ancient intact rainforests, and that the World Bank has failed to enforce the logging moratorium and continues to subsidize national policy and institutions that promote industrial logging of ancient forests. In a Bank-mediated 2002 logging moratorium deal, DRC's government agreed to not issue any further logging licenses in return for $90 million in aid. Since then an estimated 100 logging contracts covering 15 million hectares have been issued. Many are being legalized in a review subsequently initiated by the World Bank.
WWF, the global conservation organization, promotes industrial forest certification throughout the world's last natural, large and intact ancient forests. WWF works with and takes money from logging companies — including some of the world's worst ecological abusers — to help get their primary rainforest logging operations certified. The supposed best forest certification is the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) which is closely associated with both WWF and Greenpeace. Greenpeace chairs FSC's international board, and advocates ancient forest certification widely throughout the world. Recently both organizations sold our large areas of temperate rainforest in British Columbia, Canada, to “sustainable” logging. There are serious and ongoing problems with FSC including repeated issuing of inappropriate certificates and certifiers certifying whatever they want. The rules on 'High Conservation Value Forests' are just one set of rules that are routinely violated, and FSC's principles make no claims of ecological sustainability.
The ultimate aim of EcoInternet's “End Ancient Forest Logging” campaign is to get the World Bank, other donors and mainstream conservation bureaucracies completely out of the business of supporting industrial ancient forest logging — and in particular to stop supporting national forestry institutions and policy that perpetuates the industrial logging model. Only then can a united campaign stop sending mixed messages and shut down industrial ancient forest logging companies.
“Sadly, these groups are a big part of the ancient forest loss and diminishment problem. After years of these concerns being ignored, and now blocking of our protest emails, we are calling for a boycott of new, and cancellation of existing, WWF and Greenpeace memberships, and for the World Bank to be barred from ancient forest policy making. This is the beginning of a sustained campaign.”