[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[Duurzaamlijst] Wereldbank en ontbossing

Beste mensen,

Op mijn favoriete australische website voor miljeu 
nieuws ( zie www.planetark.org )  vond ik onlangs een 
interessant nieuwtje over een zelf-evaluatie van de 
wereldbank. Aan de ene kant schokkend vanwege het 
verkeerde beleid, aan de andere kant verheugend dat 
de wereldbank het zelf constateert. 
Dit bespaart een heleboel dure aktiekosten. 

Mijn voorstel is nu: kunnen we op deze lijst zo snel mogelijk 
een overzicht presenteren van alle "Carbon Tax" voorstellen te 
zamen met een overzicht van relevante websites en 

Leonard Kater

World bank admits to failure of forest policy

USA: January 28, 2000

WASHINGTON - In a damning self-indictment of its decade-old 
forest strategy, the World Bank has admitted it has failed to 
implement its own policies at the expense of the things it was 
supposed to protect - forests and the poor.

In an unusually frank internal evaluation report, the bank admitted 
its lending was flawed, failed to protect forests, failed to help the 
poor and admitted that the bank's abilities to monitor the effects 
of its lending was  limited.

In 1991, the bank adopted a forest strategy aimed at deflecting 
long-standing criticisms that the bank's activities had contributed 
to the alarming pace of global deforestation.

The nearly decade-old policy charged the bank with conserving 
tropical moist forests and planting trees to meet the needs of the 
poor. The bank also promised to monitor the impacts of its 
overall lending on forests.

The report admitted that the 1991 policy was, "narrowly focused 
on 20 moist tropical forest countries and neglected other 
biodiversity-rich forest types that are even more endangered, 
more important globally, or more in need of
conservation to meet the needs of the poor."

Critics inferred from the report that the bank, through its structural 
adjustment loans, had vicariously contributed to deforestation.

"They have been lending massively for the same economic 
policies that have been identified in the report as driving 
deforestation, without paying attention to the impact they were 
having on forests," Korinna Horta, an environment economist at 
the Environmental Defence told Reuters.

But, World Bank spokeswoman Caroline Anstey said the report 
should be seen in a positive light since it was commissioned by 
President James Wolfensohn to help him draw up a new forest 
strategy more in tune with the current situation.

"The important thing is the report was called for by (Wolfensohn,) 
who recognised there needed to be a change from the 1991 
policy," Anstey said.

"The report concludes that the time has come for a new bank 
forest policy, better attuned to the needs of developing countries 
and the changing dynamic
of the forest sector."

The report said that the poor were not a major source of 
deforestation and illegal logging, as the bank believed in 1991, 
but that demand for fuelwood for industry, timber for housing and 
international demand for hardwood were
the main factors destroying forests.

The World Bank has often been criticised for lending for projects 
such as building dams which destroy the environment. In recent 
years the bank, led by Wolfensohn, has attempted to shake off 
that image through a series of alliances with environmental 

But despite efforts to shake its tarnished image, the bank is still 
under fire. Critics have asked the bank not to fund part of the 
proposed oil pipeline between Chad and Cameroon because, 
they claim, the project will destroy rain forests and harm the 
livelihoods of people living along its route.

Horta said that while the bank appeared to be squarely facing up 
to its past failings, she remained sceptical that the bank's 
burgeoning bureaucracy can improve itself.

The report also admits that the policy was only partially 
implemented and that the bank failed to properly help the poor, 
one in four of which live in forest areas.

"Even in countries where forest lending is large, forests and their 
development are currently not an important element of the bank's 
assistance strategy for poverty alleviation," the report notes.

In a particularly damning assessment, the report said that the 
bank's policy's actually hampered lending which the bank should 
have encouraged.
The bank's "cautious approach" had a chilling effect on bank 
involvement in improving forest management in forest-rich 
countries that wished to use their forests for economic 

The report was written by the bank's Operations Evaluation 
Department, an autonomous group which reports directly to the 
bank's board.


De Duurzaamlijst: | Abonnement opzeggen? Stuur een E-mail aan:
voor nieuws,      | majordomo@ddh.nl en schrijf in het tekstdeel:
opinie en overleg | unsubscribe duurzaamlijst
Meer over de Duurzaamlijst op http://www.ddh.nl/duurzaam