Conservation & Environmental Matters

------ Forwarded Message
From: Phillip Owen <owen@soft.co.za>
Date: Sun, 26 Mar 2006 11:12:12 +0200
To: <sawac@geasphere.co.za>
Subject: Industrial Timber Plantations - Impacts on Biodiversity

GEASPHERE
www.geasphere.co.za

INDUSTRIAL TIMBER PLANTATIONS IMPACT NEGATIVLY ON BIODIVERSITY

The following extracts from scientific review papers apply to industrial
timber plantations composed primarily of eucalyptus and pine
monocultures.
Policy makers globally must recognize the negative impact of industrial
timber monocultures and take steps to limit the expansion and
entrenchment of this destructive model. Philip Owen Geasphere

“Plantation Forestry in South Africa and its Impact on Biodiversity”
Review paper by: A.G. Armstrong, G. Benn, A.E. Bowland, P.S. Goodman,
D.N. Johnson, A.H. Maddock and C.R. Scott-Shaw

Commercial Aforestation has a major impact on biodiversity in some
regions of South Africa, as demonstrated by empirical studies. This is
no emotional perception. There is a urgent need for research to address
many issues relating to the conservation of biodiversity in timber
growing and agricultural regions. There is also an urgent requirement
for the implementation of recommendations arising from this research.
The impacts of land transformation are cumulative because more of the
South African landscapes are being transformed yearly. Ecosystems are
being subjected to changes on a unprecedented scale, and the risk of
extinction and irreversible degradation is greater. Without proactive
and timeous conservation action, more species and other components of
biodiversity will pass over the brink to extinction, ecosystems will be
affected, and we will be the poorer for it.

The Impact of Commercial Afforestation on Bird Populations in Mpumalanga
Province, South Africa – Insights from Bird - Atlas data.
By: David G. Allan, James A. Harrison, Rene A. Navarro, Brian W. van
Wilgen and Mark W. Thompson

Extract:
“South Africa’s endemic grasslands, and the unique biodiversity
supported by them HAVE been neglected and impinged upon by forestry
(Industrial Timber Plantations) in the past. Positive contribution from
forestry is needed if biodiversity in the grassland biome is to be
viable in the long term. This unavoidably means that large tracts of
land suitable for afforestation must be sacrificed by the industry and
be devoted instead to alternative forms of land use which has fewer
negative impacts on the grassland biota, for example pastoral farming
and ecotourism. Identifying such alternatives and assessing their
economic value relative to forestry is an immediate research priority.”

Source:

1.“Plantation Forestry in South Africa and its Impact on Biodiversity”
For a copy of this document contact: KwaZulu-Natal Conservation Service,
P.O.Box 662, Pietermaritzburg, 3200, South Africa.

2. The Impact of commercial afforestation on Bird Populations in
Mpumalanga Province, South Africa – Insights from Bird-atlas data.
For a Copy of this document contact:
Avian Demography Unit, Department of Statistical Sciences, UCT,
Rondebosch, 7700, South Africa
Devision of Environmental Technology, CSIR, Private Bag X50011,
Stellenbosch, 7599, South Africa.

 

 

 

 

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