Forests

Primary forests, Intact Forest Landscapes and forests harbouring any of the six categories of High Conservation Values are protected under the HCV Approach.

Sustainable Development Goal 15 – Life on Land

Protect, restore, and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss.

Deforestation

is one of the main drivers of climate change.

Agricultural expansion

is the main driver of deforestation

One billion

people directly depend on forests for their livelihoods.

50%

of the World's land-based species live in forests.

NDPE

commitments adopted by companies operating in fragmented landscapes in the humid tropics aim to protect HCVs alongside High Carbon Stock forests.

Deforestation rates

are lower in RSPO certified oil palm plantations than in non-certified plantations.

The FIA Tool

has helped smallholder plantation managers in Chile protect native biodiversity and temperate forests and achieve FSC certification across 25,000 hectares.

Deforestation and other land use changes are the second-largest contributors to climate change.

The main driver of deforestation is expanding agriculture – including commercial livestock, unsustainable planting of oil palm, soy, and other crops, but also encroachment and clearing by small farmers.

The HCV Approach supports forest conservation by identifying and protecting primary forests, Intact Forest Landscapes (IFLs) and forests harboring any of the six categories of High Conservation Values where development will or is already taking place.

Forest Integrity Assessment (FIA) tool

This simple and user-friendly tool developed by the HCV Network and WWF allows any person to assess and monitor biodiversity conditions in forests and forest remnants through simple checklists available for different forest types.

Users look for easily recognizable features like big trees, trees with epiphytes, nesting trees, and regenerating seedlings and saplings along 100-meter transects to come up with a score that can then be used to detect forest changes over time.

The Secretariat is looking to scale up use of this tool by developing an app to host FIA tool checklists on a global smartphone app. A first version for Southeast Asia lowland forests has been developed in collaboration with Dr. Jennifer Lucey, Knowledge Exchange Fellow, Department of Zoology at the University of Oxford.

Our work with the High Carbon Stock Approach

The HCS Approach was developed in 2014 to support the implementation of No-Deforestation, No Peat, No Exploitation (NDPE) commitments by oil palm and pulp and paper plantation companies operating in fragmented landscapes in the humid tropics. The HCV and HCS Approaches can be jointly used to steer new plantations to degraded lands. The HCV Network has collaborated with the High Carbon Stock Approach (HCSA) Steering Group since 2014 to develop manuals, templates, and quality assurance procedures for HCV-HCSA assessments. A MOU was signed in 2020 to formalize this collaboration.

The Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber

Car tires, along with many other rubber products, are made from mixes of synthetic rubber and natural rubber sap tapped from living rubber trees. Globally, smallholders are responsible for 90% of rubber production. Market prices of natural rubber tend to be volatile, driving deforestation by farmers, many of which are smallholders, to plant more rubber trees in times of high prices.

As a founding member of the Global Platform for Sustainable Natural Rubber (GPSNR) and a member of its Executive Committee, the HCV Network supports implementation of policies related to safeguarding High Conservation Values and curbing deforestation.

For more information, please contact secretariat@hcvnetwork.org.

Related Content

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  • Announcements
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    24 September 2020

    PRESS RELEASE: Strategic HCSA-HCVRN collaboration to strengthen conservation of tropical forests and boost critical values for nature and people

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Related Documents

  • Document Title

    Forest dynamics – nature as template for forest conservation and management (2016)

    Natural forest dynamics and regeneration patterns are molded by natural disturbance regimes. These determine fundamental characteristics like forest structure, tree species composition and patterns of forest succession over time. Over the last decades, foresters have begun to take account of such regimes, and to some extent emulate their outcomes, as exemplified by various retention practices in the boreal and low impact logging in the tropics. However, even so nature is underused as model. This briefing paper focuses on how basic concepts of forest dynamics can inform conservation planning and help maintain High Conservation Values (HCVs).

    Document Type

    Working Papers

    Date of Publication

    30/12/2021

    Country

    Global

    Download
  • Document Title

    Coupling HCS and HCV Approaches to protect forests, biodiversity and livelihoods (2020)

    The High Carbon Stock (HCS) and High Conservation Value (HCV) Approaches, can be used together to identify areas important for conservation and livelihoods – and to support no deforestation commitments. This briefing note provides an overview of the two approaches and how they can be complementary, allowing companies and other stakeholders to agree where commodity production, conservation and community lands should be most appropriately and responsibly allocated.

    Document Type

    Tools & Guidance

    Date of Publication

    30/12/2021

    Country

    Global

    Download
  • Document Title

    FIA Tool – Generic checklist for Scandinavia

    Field form with sets of yes/no scoring questions which guide and standardize assessments in Scandinavian forests, adding up to a numerical value of forest integrity. Some questions address biodiversity directly (e.g. presence of trees with epiphytes), others serve as indicators of natural conditions or low human pressure (e.g. presence of very large trees and presence of trees of high commercial value). Recent field forms divide scoring questions into two sections: Structure and Composition, and Impacts and Threats.

    Document Type

    Checklists

    Date of Publication

    30/12/2021

    Country

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