ForInfo Factsheet: Capacity Building in Sustainable Forest Management (SFM)

November 2013

Wood energy is vital to the livelihoods of rural communities in the Mekong region, where over five times more fuelwood than timber is extracted for daily use. However, the energy needs of the community are commonly not factored into the establishment of market-oriented enterprises, which can lead to supply disruptions and subsequent impact on income as well as the environment. Hence, the importance of establishing sustainable community forest (CF) management, to ensure a stable provision of wood energy and to prevent gaps in supply and demand is significant. On a global scale, most commercially focussed community forestry projects fail to properly support communal fuelwood initiatives that could increase incomes on an ongoing basis. In Asia, only initial steps have been taken to encourage communities to develop commercial scale fuelwood production that takes into account human consumption needs and available resources.

ForInfo's Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) project in the Cardamom Mountains puts unique emphasis on helping forest-dependent communities manage their resources and launch commercial scale production, specifically of fuelwood, charcoal and non-forest sources of biomass energy. The project supports sound analysis to improve fuelwood management and assess commercial oppurtunities targeting urban markets.

With its partners, ForInfo is developing community forestry-based enterprises in five sites. These enterprises are among the 30 community forests and 10 community protected areas (CPA) that have been indentified across the Cardmom landscape for potential pilot projects.

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