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Smartfolder for Amazon Basin Conservation Information and Deforestation

by Rose Hessmiller last modified Jan 10, 2013 08:45 AM
Smartfolder for Amazon Basin Conservation Information (deforestation)
File Bushmeat and human health: Assessing the Evidence in tropical and sub-tropical forests by Gateway Web Editor — last modified Aug 14, 2017 01:28 PM
USAID's Forestry and Biodiversity Office partners with the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) to study the impacts of the consumption of and trade in bushmeat. This recent systematic review is a must read for professionals working in biodiversity, food security and human health who want to learn more about key intersections within this emerging crisis.
File Does secure land tenure save forests? A review of the relationship between land tenure and tropical deforestation (CCAFS Working Paper No. 7) by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jul 30, 2014 07:16 PM
Deforestation and degradation are tied to a complex array of socioeconomic and political factors. As noted in studies focusing on large-scale policy interventions such as REDD+ and payment for ecosystem services programs, among the most important of these factors is land tenure and land tenure security. This paper reviews past literature connecting forest outcomes and land tenure to better understand broad relationships between land tenure form, land tenure security and forest outcomes. From a theoretical perspective, clear and secure forest tenure can have either a positive or negative impact on forested land, depending on political and economic conditions. We review over 100 empirical cases of forest outcomes under specific land tenure conditions and find that land tenure security is associated with less deforestation, regardless of the form of tenure. State-owned protected forests are associated with more positive forest outcomes relative to private, communal and public land. We discuss consistency and identification issues in the current literature around deforestation and land tenure, and provide suggestions for future studies and implementation issues for policymakers. For more information contact: Brian E. Robinson, Institute on the Environment at the University of Minnesota (, Lisa Naughton, Land Tenure Center, University of Wisconsin/Madison (, or Mike Colby, USAID ( Featured September, 2012.
File Nonfarm employment in small-scale forest-based enterprises: Policy and environmental issues by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jan 10, 2013 09:10 AM
This paper examines available literature on small forest-based enterprises to draw some conclusions on how these enterprises function, grow and change over time. Small forest-based enterprise activities are one of the largest sources of non-farm income in the rural economy of developing countries. They also account for a large part of the total harvest from forests in many areas. Income from these activities is particularly important during seasonal shortfalls in food and cash crop income and in periods of drought or other emergencies. Ease of access to forest raw materials means that forest-based activities are particularly important for the poor and for women. However, most of these activities provide very low returns to labor and may thus; provide only minimal and short-lived livelihood contributions. Some of the most important saleable forest products face uncertain markets because of growing competition from industrial or synthetic alternatives or domesticated sources of the materials. As demand grows, some activities are also threatened by depletion of or reduced access to forest resources.The author suggests that, in developing policies to support sustainable activities, it is important to distinguish between those activities that have the potential to expand and those that do not. Policy issues to consider include regulations that discriminate against the informal sector, policies that result in the shift from communally managed to uncontrolled open access of forest resources, and restrictions on private production and sale of forest products that impede the development of domesticating forest products.
File Parks, population, and resettlement in the Dominican Republic by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jan 10, 2013 09:11 AM
Los Haitises National Park in the Dominican Republic was created by resettling inhabitants of the protected area and excluding all human entry. This study is derived from surveys conducted during the resettlement process of one community that had been relocated, one that not, and two that would be. The objective was to provide information helpful in future creation of policies and preserves. The surveys covered topics such as the definition and boundaries of national parks, people's feelings about conservation, agricultural issues in resettlement areas, and what land uses they would be willing to give up to promote conservation. Most people demonstrated confusion about the concepts of a national park and buffer zones and were unaware of the proposed boundaries of Los Haitises. Despite government preconceptions, villagers showed support of conservation and were able to cite benefits such as watershed integrity, animal and plant preservation and soil conservation. Villagers listed many land use activities that they would be willing to give up in order to support conservation. They were very skeptical of the land and housing that the government would give, and their fears were supported by the findings of those families that had been relocated. Community and religion had a positive relationship with attitudes toward park use and conservation. Study results suggest that communities should be involved in the development of policies and governmental conservation initiatives. The study demonstrates that rural communities may be willing to make sacrifices in their land uses in order to contribute to shared goals. Misconceptions about people's understanding of conservation issues may hinder progress. Education is critical to protected area planning, management, and community integration.
File Community-based natural resources management: An annotated bibliography by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jan 10, 2013 09:11 AM
File Guatemala: Assessment and analysis of progress towrd SO5 goals in the Maya Biosphere Reserve by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jan 10, 2013 09:11 AM
In 2000, specialists from Chemonics International assessed SO5 activities to provide USAID/Guatemala with recommendations for a new program strategy and framework for assessing results of project efforts. Another team from International Resources Group, through the EPIQ IQC, conducted a separate assessment of Guatemala's environmental policy and protected areas system. The resulting complementary analyses were coordinated and posted together in this document. Project achievements include the establishment of the Maya Biosphere Reserve (MBR), reduced deforestation within MBR, strengthened coalitions between government and NGOs, initiation of NGOs, and establishment of forest concessions. Forests in the multiple-use zone remain intact and are producing benefits due to effective management; however, concessions do not yet act independently. Concession programs are not effectively evaluated and reported to USAID. The authors find that program implementation has been hampered by: Indefensible protected area (PA) borders; Uneven allocation of resources within the PA, Lack of baseline for evaluation, Buffer zone does not act as a buffer and is an area of intensive settlement and use Inappropriate sustainable agriculture program; Land titling difficulties; Local population growth. The authors recommend that MBR expand local stakeholder participation and the National Council for Protected Areas should be a coordinating body. They further note that international NGOs have become unnecessary ‘middlemen’ for funding while local NGOs still need strengthening. They find that all types of project information and planning need improved management and suggest that sustainable forestry activities should be further promoted. The authors suggest that the future actions focus on the MBR rather than expanding the conservation program to other areas. Furthermore, they suggest that MBR focus should be on 1) conservation of biodiversity in core areas, 2) consolidation of community forestry concessions, 3) integrated development of service corridor, and 4) improved policies. Lastly, the authors note that the method of evaluating project results is not functioning, making it impossible for project managers to know what the actual successes are and where improvement are needed. Suggestions are given for improving this process.
File Making sense of research for sustainable land management by Gateway Web Editor — last modified Mar 06, 2017 02:00 PM
This publication is based on the work of more than 600 scientists and synthesizes experiences and practice-relevant results from a 7-year German-funded international research programme on interactions between land management, climate change, and ecosystems and their services.
File Participatory Learning and Action 59 - Change at hand: Web 2.0 for development by Radha Arunkumar — last modified Jun 11, 2015 12:31 AM
Web 2.0 tools and approaches are radically changing the ways we create, share, collaborate and publish digital information through the Internet. Participatory Web 2.0 for development – or Web2forDev for short – is a way of employing web services to int
Katoomba (14th) Meeting on Payments for Ecosystem Services by Mike Colby — last modified Oct 26, 2016 05:43 AM
This was the first of several Katoomba activities to be co-sponsored by USAID's Economic Growth, Agriculture, and Trade Bureau/Office of Natural Resources, under the 5-year TransLinks program led by the Wildlife Conservation Society and its 2009 Standing Forests Conservation Markets Initiative co-led by partner Forest Trends.
Amazon Conservation Team Helps Indigenous Tribe Launch Carbon Fund at COP16 in Cancún by Amazon Conservation Team — last modified Jan 10, 2013 07:30 AM
December 2010
Brazilian Stakeholders Urge Feds to go REDD by Steve Zwick — last modified Jan 10, 2013 07:30 AM
Farmers, indigenous tribes, and environmental NGOs across Brazil say they need direct payments for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation (REDD) if they are going to help halt climate change, but the federal government remains opposed. Can a new declaration of consensus promote change at the top?
Brazil's development bank announces $588m fund to reduce agricultural emissions by Portal Web Editor — last modified Mar 01, 2013 06:48 PM
Brazil's national development bank (BNDES) launched a 1 billion reais ($588 million) fund that will finance projects to reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with agriculture, reports Reuters. BNDES lent 137 billion reais ($69 billion) in 2009—more than the World Bank.
REDD+ Opens Up New Opportunities for Forest Product Management in the Amazon by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jan 10, 2013 11:48 AM
The emergence of subnational REDD+ projects in southwestern Amazonia is showing potential for multiple-use management of non-timber forest products, particularly Brazil nuts, and forest carbon. Multiple-use forestry, which includes NTFPs, timber and environmental services, has gained momentum among researchers, practitioners and policy-makers as a way to promote forest conservation and livelihood development in the tropics.
The Surui Become the First Indigenous Tribe to Earn Carbon Credits under Internationally Recognized Standards by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jan 10, 2013 07:30 AM
A small tribe of indigenous people unknown to the outside world a half-century ago and once on the brink of extinction has harnessed an innovative forest carbon project to shield their territory from illegal logging and preserve their chosen way of life. As a result, the 1300-strong Paiter-Surui last week became the first indigenous tribe in the Amazon and globally to earn carbon credits under internationally recognized standards for keeping carbon locked in trees – setting the stage for scores of similar projects that can unleash needed funding for indigenous people who preserve endangered tropical rainforest across the Amazon.
File Safeguarding the World’s Water: 2008 Report on USAID Water Sector Activities by Rose Hessmiller — last modified Jul 30, 2014 09:01 PM
This report summarizes USAID’s fiscal year 2008 investments and programs in safe drinking water and sanitation supply projects and related water management activities around the world through March/April 2009. The report describes all of USAID’s water management programs that help ensure water security and sustainability with equity. Featured Sep, 2009 in News: USAID RM Portal Featured Stories.
Google Earth Engine and the Surui by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jan 10, 2013 07:31 AM
Watch as Surui Chief Almir, ACT Brazil Director Vasco van Roosmalen, and Google Earth Engine Manager Rebecca Moore talk about how the Surui people in Brazil are working to counterbalance the effects of climate change through the Surui Carbon Project, and how they are using technology like Google Earth Engine to document it.
File USAID Global Waters: Breaking the Cycle of Despair in the Horn of Africa | October 2011 by Portal Web Editor — last modified Nov 24, 2013 01:00 AM
Global Waters tells the story of our water-related efforts around the globe. The magazine features in-depth articles exploring solutions to the ongoing water crisis, opinion pieces by top development professionals and first-hand accounts from stakeholders and beneficiaries. Volume 02 | Issue 06
File USAID Global Waters: Striking a Balance In Latin America & the Caribbean | January 2012 by Portal Web Editor — last modified Nov 24, 2013 12:58 AM
Global Waters tells the story of our water-related efforts around the globe. The magazine features in-depth articles exploring solutions to the ongoing water crisis, opinion pieces by top development professionals and first-hand accounts from stakeholders and beneficiaries. Volume III | Issue I
File Improving Grassroots Equity in the Forests and Climate Change Context: Training Manual by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jun 11, 2015 12:15 AM
The USAID-funded Grassroots Equity and Enhanced Networks in the Mekong (GREEN Mekong) program recently completed a seminal training publication entitled “Improving grassroots equity in the forests and climate change context”. The manual aims to develop the knowledge and capacities of grassroots facilitators to conduct meaningful participatory processes that can improve social equity and inclusion in forest-based climate change mitigation policy frameworks, mechanisms and projects. Using innovative training approaches and methodologies grounded on experiential learning principles, this manual differs from typical REDD+ materials as it focuses on the ‘how' rather than the ‘what' of equity. It will help grassroots stakeholders to generate valuable opinions and positions about forests and climate change related developments. This manual will be translated into all Mekong region languages for wider use by grassroots actors.
File West Africa USAID-USFS: Biodiversity Analysis and Technical Support for the STEWARD Program; Mar 08 by Portal Web Editor — last modified Jan 10, 2013 09:57 AM
USAID Biodiversity Analysis and Technical Support for the Sustainable and Thriving Environment for West Africa Regional Development Program (STEWARD) An Assessment of Environmental Threats and Transboundary Development Opportunities in the Upper Guinean Forest Region
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