Sustainable Forest ManagementSustainable Forest Management

Sustainable Forest Management

Sustainable Forest Management is a means of achieving a continuous flow of desired forest products and services without any socially unacceptable, environmental or social impact or reduction of its inherent value and potential future performance.

Selective harvesting is carried out in the Permanent Forest Estate whereby only the mature and over mature trees are felled in a single operation, while at the same time, leaving behind a residual stand with sufficient number of trees in the intermediate diameter classes to form the next crop.

The ITTO Mission to Sarawak in 1989/1990 to assess sustainable forest management in the State had stated that forest management in Sarawak was of a higher standard than in most other tropical timber producing countries. As a follow-up to the recommendation by the Mission, the Model Forest Management Area (MFMA) Project was implemented in 1993 and Phase II was completed at the end of 2000. Personnel from the Forest Department and the Timber Industry have been trained in reduced impact logging techniques by this Project.

A Malaysian-Germany Technical Co-operation Project entitled "Promotion of sustainable forest management in Sarawak" was also set up in January 1995 and is now in its second phase. A pilot study area in the Upper Baram has been established to demonstrate the sustainable forest management system proposed by this Project.

The timber industy also recognises the importance of sustainable forest management and has taken steps to upgrade the logging skills of its workers. The Forest Department and the Sarawak Timber Association (STA) have conducted training courses for tree fellers since 1996 with the assistance of qualified trainers from New Zealand. These training courses cover directional tree felling, chainsaw maintenance and associated safe working practices. Courses for other categories of forest workers are also planned.

The Forest Department and the Timber Industry of Sarawak are committed to ensuring that the Permanent Forest Estate of the State is managed on a sustainable basis.

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