Mexico - Resource conservation and forest sector review : Mexico - Estudio de revision del sector forestal y conservacion de recursos (Espagnol)
Forests and wildlands cover 72 percent of Mexico, and they have broad importance both nationally and globally: 1) biologically, as ecosystems that are repositories of species, genetic material, and aesthetic beauty; 2) environmentally, as stabilizing ... Voir la suite
Forests and wildlands cover 72 percent of Mexico, and they have broad importance both nationally and globally: 1) biologically, as ecosystems that are repositories of species, genetic material, and aesthetic beauty; 2) environmentally, as stabilizing elements in soil and water regimes and to capture carbon; 3) socially, as the source of a range of substance and informally marketed products used by a poor, rural population; and 4) commercially, as the source of timber and non-timber products for domestic consumption or export and as a base for tourism and recreational enterprises. Over the past five years, wildlands have declined cosiderably and forests have declined more than 50 percent in area, with deforestation concentrated in the humid tropics. In addition, the resource base is degraded and underutilized. This situation has arisen because historically Mexican policies and development strategies have almost exclusively valued forests and wildlands for their commercial timber only, in its absence, their conversion to agricultural or pasture lands. While new laws, policies and institutional arrangements have been introduced for forests, water, land and environmental management, they are not adequate for the desired level of forest and wildland management. Legislation for regulation and control of forests and conservation areas continues to be overambitious, covering too big an area and too many aspects of management and conservationand requiring too many personnel to administer. Economic liberalization, including the implementation of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and related agreements, will impact forests and wildlands in several ways. While it has already removed incentives favoring agricultural development, suitable incentives for forestry and conservation activities have not yet been established. As farmers and livestock owners begin to react to the removal of those incentives, the area of land under basic grains will decrease, and agricultural and livestock production will be concentrated on higher-quality lands. This will reduce pressure on the forests and wildlands. An improved institutional and policy framework is needed to better establish priorities for regulation and promotional activities. Realizing this goal will require considerable political will as well as sustained effort and allocation of funds within and outside the public sector. This review recommends a number of strategic and institutional changes and specific actions.
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