(Vatican Radio) An International Forum on Payments for Environmental Services of
tropical forests is taking place this week in San José, Costa Rica. The initiative
is a financing mechanism, which provides economic incentives to farmers and forest
landowners in return for conservation and sustainable management of natural resources.
The PES schemes are seen as an important tool in assisting tropical forests in danger and amongst other things improving people’s livelihoods.
“Payments for Environmental Services is a way to recognize the range of services forests provide to society …they (forests) also contribute to maintaining a steady climate, they help regulate water flows, they stabilize soils…and those are all considered to be eco systems services or environmental services that forests provide, ”Eva Mueller is Director of the Forest Economic policy and product division of the Forestry Department at the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation and is attending the meeting.
The Forum is underway in Costa Rica which started its PES programme, in 1996. Ms Mueller says that this country is a “pioneer in the field” and that the schemes have had” a tremendous effect on forest resources”.
The International Forum on Payments for Environmental Services of tropical forests runs until April 10th and is being organized by organized by FAO, International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO), and the National Forestry Financing Fund (FONAFIFO) of Costa Rica. Listen to Lydia O’Kane’s interview with Eva Mueller