Promoting conservation areas and sustainable management of natural forests in the Amazon

Project description

Title: Promoting Conservation Areas and Sustainable Management of Natural Forests in the Amazon
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Brazil
Lead executing agency: Brazilian Ministry of the Environment (MMA)
Overall term: 2007 to 2014

Context

Conservation areas are a key factor in Brazil’s fight against deforestation. As green barriers against illegal land grabs and deforestation, they contribute to climate protection and to preserving biodiversity.

Despite persistent deforestation pressures, new institutional conditions and efficient environmental monitoring instruments have continuously reduced the annual deforestation rates in the Amazon. In 2004, 27,772 square kilometres of forest were cleared, while between August 2011 and July 2012, this figure was only 4,656 square kilometres. This corresponds to an 80 per cent reduction.

Between 1998 and 2010 in particular, new conservation areas were created in the Amazon region, with support from Germany and others. Currently, the area under conservation spans more than one million square kilometres. This is roughly one-third of the Amazon biome, or an area the size of Egypt.

The public forests outside the conservation areas are also highly significant for protecting the Amazon. In order to roll out implementation of the law adopted in 2006 on sustainable forest management across these areas, improvements are needed to the legal and institutional framework.

Objective

Conservation area management and sustainable management of natural forests in the Brazilian Amazon are effectively and efficiently implemented by the participating actors.

Approach

Project partners, in addition to Brazil’s Ministry of the Environment (Ministério do Meio Ambiente – MMA), include the federal nature protection office (Instituto Chico Mendes de Conservação da Biodiversidade – ICMBio), the Brazilian Forest Service (Serviço Florestal Brasileiro – SFB) and environmental protection bodies within the priority federal states in the Amazon.

Conservation area management: GIZ builds on the approaches and past experience of conservation area programmes in Brazil, and advises the partner organisations on the following issues:

  • improving the quality of conservation area management
  • consolidating and sustainably financing conservation areas
  • promoting governance structures for conservation area management

Brazil is using the FIFA World Cup 2014 in order to raise awareness about conservation areas near the venues (Parques da COPA). GIZ is advising the ICMBio on conservation area management around Manaus. Improved access and attractive information resources for park visitors aim to increase the public’s awareness of and commitment to nature conservation.

GIZ is also supporting the development of an inter-institutional knowledge platform for practice-oriented educational activities. The main focus is on building up the capacity and competence of official bodies, municipalities and non-governmental organisations that are responsible for the protection and sustainable use of natural resources. Modern means of communication enable networking and exchange of knowledge among state bodies, the private sector, research community, civil society and municipalities on the Amazon’s sustainable development.

Sustainable forest use: The focus is on learning and exchange processes between the Brazilian Forest Service and the federal states. GIZ advises on:

  • allocating and monitoring forest concessions
  • implementing forest management by local user groups at the community level
  • improving inter-institutional cooperation between forest institutions
Brazil. The Ministry of the Environment is the project’s main partner   © GIZ

Results achieved so far

In recent years, over 50 conservation areas covering more than 200,000 square kilometres have been established and equipped by the Brazilian Government. This is an area similar in size to Great Britain. In total, over 500,000 square kilometres of ecological corridors have been created in the Amazon. They conserve the integrity of spatially linked habitats across extensive areas, and protect the movements and reproductive processes of the species.

The administrative bodies of 16 national conservation areas and a number of federal conservation areas have introduced new quality management standards. These improvements are currently being replicated in additional protected areas.

At the national level, the allocation of additional forest concessions has been reorganised. These new regulations will enable the forests to be managed sustainably over the long term. So far, concessions have been granted for approximately 220,000 hectares of the Jamarí state forest as well as 49,000 hectares of the Saracá-Taquera state forest. A new ordinance has improved the conditions for community forest management. It has laid the foundations for up to 10 million hectares of the Amazon region to be placed under sustainable management over the long term.

At the national level, the allocation of additional forest concessions has been reorganised. These new regulations will enable the forests to be managed sustainably over the long term. So far, concessions have been granted for approximately 220,000 hectares of the Jamarí state forest as well as 49,000 hectares of the Saracá-Taquera state forest. A new ordinance has improved the conditions for community forest management. It has laid the foundations for up to 10 million hectares of the Amazon region to be placed under sustainable management over the long term.