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ITTO Explores Reduced-Impact Logging
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United States Prepares for XXII World Forestry Congress
Renewing a commitment: Forest Service Associate Chief, Sally Collins, and her counterpart, Vice Administrator Li Yucai of the Chinese State Forestry Administration, build a partnership on invasive species, forest policy and nature-based tourism.  

Forestry Cooperation Between the People's Republic of China and the United States
In some ways, China is much closer to the United States than some people might think. In terms of climate, physiography, biology, and even natural resource policies, China and the United States are strikingly similar. Both countries have much to gain from capitalizing on our commonalities.

Recognizing this, the USDA Forest Service and the Chinese State Forestry Administration have signed an agreement to cooperate on forestry. On June 12, 2002, Associate Chief Sally Collins and her Chinese counterpart, Vice Administrator Li Yucai, opened the first session of the United States-People's Republic of China Joint Working Group on Forestry Cooperation in Beijing, China.

In her opening remarks, Collins observed that our countries face similar environmental and policy challenges in managing our forests. Both the USDA Forest Service and the Chinese State Forestry Administration, she noted, are charged with providing the values and services that our respective peoples expect from their forests. The best chance we have to meet the challenge is to take an ecosystem approach to forest management. Success will require global cooperation, especially between countries with similar biological and physical features.

In the meeting, both sides agreed to collaborate over the next 2 years on 15 activities in such areas as forest policy and economic analysis, invasive species, fire monitoring, forest inventory and monitoring, forest health and restoration, and nature-based tourism.

After the meeting, Collins and her USDA Forest Service delegation visited a forest in China, giving them a firsthand view of the progress China has made in forest management. The delegation also learned more about the challenges China faces, in part due to the diversity of its forests and people.


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ITTO Explores Reduced-Impact Logging
As in other forestry organizations, reduced-impact logging has recently become a prominent topic in the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO). In fact, ITTO helped support the International Conference on the Application of Reduced Impact Logging to Advance Sustainable Forest Management, held in Kuching, Malaysia, in February 2001. The conference produced recommendations for promoting reduced-impact logging.

In Central Africa, ITTO cosponsored a 1-day workshop in May 2001, in collaboration with the World Conservation Union and the USDA Forest Service. The workshop focused on developing a logging code of practice for the region, identifying regional training needs, and assessing the costs and benefits of reduced-impact logging.

In Brazil, ITTO co-funded a program by the Fundaçao Floresta Tropical, in coordination with the Brazilian Federal Institute of the Environment and Natural Resources, to "train the trainers" in reduced-impact logging.

In Indonesia, ITTO supports the Bulungan Research Forest project, a collaborative effort between a state-owned logging company and the Center for International Forestry Research to develop logging guidelines, train staff in reduced-impact logging, and compare the costs and benefits of reduced-impact logging and conventional logging. ITTO is also establishing a training center for reduced-impact logging in each of the three tropical regions (Africa, Asia, and the Americas).


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Workshop on Illegal Logging
On May 29-31, 2002, a workshop explored field techniques for combating illegal logging and improving transparency in the forestry sector worldwide. Cohosts included the World Resources Institute; USDA Forest Service, International Programs; and U.S. Agency for International Development.

Illegal logging has adverse environmental and social impacts, undermining the ability of legitimate timber producers to compete. The workshop brought together representatives from government and nongovernmental organizations that are working to detect, expose, and shut down illegal logging.

Participants shared experiences, learned new techniques, and discussed ways to focus more international attention on illegal logging. The workshop laid the foundation for future cooperation and mutual support across borders and forest types around the globe.


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United States Prepares for XXII World Forestry Congress
Every 6 years, thousands gather at forestry's most important global event-the World Forestry Congress. On September 21-28, 2003, Canada will host the XXII World Forestry Congress in Quebec City, giving forestry practitioners and policymakers the opportunity to exchange information on forest resources and discuss forest management issues.

The theme for next year's Congress is "Forests, Source of Life"-a look at how forests benefit the Earth and its inhabitants worldwide. Program areas include "Forests for People," "Forests for the Planet," and "People and Forests in Harmony."

An Internet discussion forum will highlight the upcoming Congress. Organizers and individual countries are putting together a program of plenary, research, and technical presentations; exhibits; technical tours; and various side events. Congress organizers can be reached at sec-gen@wfc2003.org (e-mail); additional details can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.wfc2003.org.

The USDA Forest Service, International Programs, is planning U.S. participation in the Congress by working with stakeholder groups to coordinate activities, exhibits, speakers, and study tours. Denise Ingram, the International Programs point of contact, can be reached at cdingram@fs.fed.us (e-mail), 202-273-4733 (voice), or 202-273-4750 (fax).


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