The good news
Problems with tourism
Disappearing wildlife
The bad news
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The world’s demand for timber and paper means there is much international trade in these products. Some timber companies are now large, very rich, transnationals, with Malaysians logging in Guyana, Indonesians in Brazil, Koreans in Siberia, Japanese in Papua New Guinea and French companies in Gabon. The power they wield often leads to a clash of interests with governments, or between governments, landowners and local people. The profits to be made also sometimes lead to corruption of government officials. Unfortunately, some logging companies, unlike PfB and others which have FSC certification, have no long-term interest in the forests, the wildlife or the local people. This can lead to extraction of trees without consideration for future harvests. In some places, for example in the North West Pacific area of Canada and the USA and in the Philippines, huge areas of ancient forest are being clear-felled (all the trees cut).

Problems with logging

  • Vietnamese loggers are taking thousands of cubic metres of valuable timber from Cambodia, despite the Cambodian Government’s 1996 ban on the trade.
  • Incompetent felling and extracting a Brazilian mahogany tree kills or damages an average of 27 other trees of over 18cm diameter..
  • In Brazil it is reckoned that more than 70% of the wood harvested is wasted in the production process and ends up being burned.