Population growth and development are placing unprecedented stresses on forests, agricultural land, and watersheds worldwide. Humans rely on these ecosystems for food, fuel, and other social and cultural benefits. But in many regions we are extracting resources more quickly than natural systems can recover. Wealthy and developing countries have different incentives for managing these resources, which makes it challenging to develop common international standards for conserving lands and forests. Energy shortages are creating new controversies over using crops and forest products as inputs for fuels.
CIERP’s Agriculture, Forests, and Biodiversity (AFB) Program examines international policies and treaties on global forest governance and sustainable agriculture. The program focuses on current forest negotiations and financing mechanisms; climate-smart agriculture that is resilient to climate change, mitigates climate change, and increases productivity; and the social, environmental, and economic impacts of biofuels that are increasingly used to meet growing energy demands.