XV World Forestry Congress Logo Image

Voluntary Certification, Timber Legality and Carbon Offsets in Africa – Opportunities and Challenges

May 4, 2022

This video was prepared for the XV World Forestry Congress in Seoul, Republic of Korea, from May 2-6, 2022.

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Africa lost the highest percentage of tropical forests of any continent during the 1980s, 1990s, and early 2000s. It is the only continent in the world where deforestation is accelerating. Current deforestation rates in Africa are approximately twice that of the rest of the world. There are many factors contributing to the ongoing deforestation and forest degradation in Africa including: 1) unregulated harvesting; 2) land conversion, poverty; 3) corruption; 4) civil unrest; 5) lack of technical/financial capacity; 6) poorly defined land tenure systems and in some regions 7) fire. Voluntary forest management certification, timber legality assurance systems and carbon offset projects provide opportunities to mitigate many of the threats contributing to Africa’s high rates of deforestation and forest degradation. This video provides a brief overview of each of these approaches and presents the challenges and opportunities associated with their implementation in Africa.