PROTECTING GENETIC RESOURCES AND TRADITIONAL FOREST RELATED KNOWLEDGE THROUGH FOREST CERTIFICATION
Hin Fui Lim
Baharuddin Intan Nurulhani
There is increasing awareness that there is a need to protect genetic resources and traditional forest related knowledge (TFRK) to enable sustainable management of natural resources, forest-dependent communities and development of value-added natural products. A number of international instruments are being implemented to ensure that genetic resources and TFRK are protected. Other than these international instruments agreed by the nation parties, the market-driven forest certification has emerged as a glaring tool pushing the resource producing countries to manage their forest resources sustainably and thus also contribute to the protection and development of the TFRK. In forest certification, the key concept is sustainable forest management, which encompasses environmental sustainability (an ecosystem able to support its organisms, able to perpetuate itself, without loss in productivity), social sustainability (the activity should be socially acceptable and tolerable) and economic sustainability the benefits to the society should exceed the costs incurred, without loss to future generations). This paper examines Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)’s principles and criteria and how they can contribute to the protection of genetic resources and TFRK.
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