A senior United Nations official has described the forests in the world as a ‘fundamental’ for human survival and overall well-being.
This was stated by the senior official after the United Nations’ State of the World’s Forest report was published. This report was published at a United Nations forestry meeting held in Rome, Italy.
The director of Food and Agriculture Organization’s Forestry Division, Eva Mueller stated that trees are a direct source of fuel, food, and income. The director also said that forests habitats were home for around eighty percent of the total biodiversity. The food which comes from forests includes nuts, fruits, leaves, mushrooms, insects, roots, and wild animals. This often contributes to a nutritious supplement to local, rural people. The food from forest in many cases of hardship provides a safety net.
According to the Mueller, forests, farms, trees, and agroforestry forms a system which contributes towards food security, livelihoods, and nutrition in many ways. This makes the forests fundamental to the survival of not only forest dwellers, but also indigenous people.
Forests and agroforestry have a huge potential to provide sustainable development and contribute towards a greener economy. However, there is no clear evidence on the matter.
The report stated that the income from formal forestry sector accounts for almost 0.9 percent of the global economy. But, the informal income which comes from woodfuel, food, construction materials, etc., holds forests’ contribution of around 1.1 percent in the global economy. The report also outlined the importance of forests’ contribution towards and food and nutrition security.