Wednesday, March 22, 2017

International Day of Forests

This week, the UN celebrates the International Day of Forests.  During this celebration, the UN encourages local communities to conserve forest resources.  The theme this year is "Forests and Energy" which was a little surprising to me.  2016 was "Forests and Water" and 2015 was "Forests and Climate Change".  2014 was "My Forest, Our Future," while the kick-off year was 2013.   The role of forests in sustainable energy is, I think, a unique idea that's going to be a challenge to sell -- that word "sustainable" is really critical to the theme.

I would have proposed "Forests and Biodiversity" as this year's theme.  Tropical forests cover 2% of the Earth's surface but house 50% of our terrestrial biodiversity.  Temperate deciduous forests are some of the most threatened ecosystems on the planet.  Forests can be used sustainably (there's lots to harvest in a sustainable way), but I don't think I would've focused on burning forests as a sustainable use.  I would have focused on other forest products such as cocoa, lumber, pharmaceuticals, coffee, syrup, even mushrooms and ginseng!  What do you think?

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