Sustainable forest management

Close to 1.6 billion people depend on forest resources for their survival. Forest resources directly contribute to the livelihoods of 90% of the 1.2 billion people living in extreme poverty.

Controlled directional felling in FSC-certified tropical rainforest producing Meranti timber for use in garden furniture.  Northern Malaysia

Forests provide:

  • food
  • building materials
  • medicines
  • wood for fuel
  • a source of income

Indirectly, forest resources also provide essential environmental services, such as:

  • maintaining soil stability
  • protecting water flow and quality 
  • regulating global climate by absorbing and storing carbon

Around 13 million hectares of forest are lost every year. The poorest people feel the impact of this destruction the most, as they rely on the forest for natural resources and their livelihoods.

What WWF is doing

We work with local communities across the world to:

  • help them to secure their rights to manage the forest resources on which their livelihoods depend
  • support them to manage forests sustainably, for their own well-being as well as to protect the environment
  • provide opportunities for generating long-term incomes from sustainable forest management, for example by providing business training and linking them to national and international markets
  • enable them to gain FSC certification and access markets for sustainably managed timber