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Research Report

One century of forest rehabilitation in the Philippines: Approaches, outcomes and lessons

Unna Chokkalingam
Antonio P. Carandang
Juan M. Pulhin
Rodel D. Lasco
Rose Jane J. Peras
Takeshi Toma
Copyright Date: Jan. 1, 2006
Pages: 146
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. 1-5)
    Unna Chokkalingam, Antonio P. Carandang, Juan M. Pulhin and Rodel D. Lasco

    Forest cover is decreasing or very low in many tropical landscapes following decades of logging, fire and other human disturbances. At the same time, there are large and growing areas of degraded forest lands� that need to be rehabilitated to again provide forest goods and services and meet local livelihood needs. National, international, local and private agencies have invested in innumerable rehabilitation initiatives in the tropics. Some countries such as China and the Philippines started earlier than others. Some countries are winding up large programs and others are initiating them. The initiatives have differed in scale, objectives, costs, implementation strategies,...

  2. (pp. 6-41)
    Juan M. Pulhin, Unna Chokkalingam, Rose Jane J. Peras, Romeo T. Acosta, Antonio P. Carandang, Mayumi Q. Natividad, Rodel D. Lasco and Ramon A. Razal

    The once lush tropical rainforests of the Philippines have experienced extensive deforestation and degradation over the last century (Pulhin 2003). Simultaneously, small-scale forest rehabilitation¹ efforts have been ongoing since around 1910. Traditionally, government and private companies initiated and implemented rehabilitation activities, but since the mid 1970s international funding began to play a role and many different sectors became involved. Recent projects vary widely in terms of key actors, scale, major objectives, approaches and duration. For instance, projects range from large-scale, government-driven watershed reforestation to small-scale plantations established by non-government organisations (NGOs) and/or peoples’ organisations (POs). They also include private individual...

  3. (pp. 42-106)
    Unna Chokkalingam, Juan M. Pulhin, Antonio P. Carandang, Rose Jane J. Peras, Rodel D. Lasco and Mayumi Q. Natividad

    The Philippines has had a large number of initiatives to rehabilitate� its degraded forest lands� over the last century (see Chapter II). These initiatives have evolved in response to changing socio-economic, environmental and political realities; and have varied in scale, objectives, actors involved, funding sources and institutional arrangements. However, the outcomes and long-term sustainability of the efforts have rarely been evaluated.

    Since 1960, formal projects and private initiatives combined have supposedly rehabilitated more than 1.7 million ha, but little is known about their status (Esteban 2003, Chapter II). Some claim huge failures with nothing much to show on the ground...

  4. (pp. 107-121)
    Rodel D. Lasco, Antonio P. Carandang, Unna Chokkalingam, Juan M. Pulhin, Ramon A. Razal, Romeo T. Acosta, Mayumi Q. Natividad and Rose Jane J. Peras

    As part of CIFOR’s regional research project “Review of forest rehabilitation: Lessons from the past”, workshops were held in the three study regions, Region III (Central Luzon), Region VII (Central Visayas) and Region XI (Davao) in October 2003. These workshops provided a platform for stakeholders to share their experiences and perspectives on key forest rehabilitation¹ problems and issues. The workshop in Region III also served as a national workshop.

    Each workshop had 16–27 participants. Participants came from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), local government units (LGU), the private sector, non-government organisations (NGO), ‘people’s organisations’ (PO) or...

  5. (pp. 122-132)
    Unna Chokkalingam, Juan M. Pulhin, Antonio P. Carandang and Rodel D. Lasco

    The Philippines has invested a lot of money and effort to rehabilitate� its degraded forest lands over the last century. Coming back to our questions in Chapter I, have these efforts actually increased forest cover, helped impoverished upland communities, enhanced biodiversity and environmental services, or contributed to meeting timber needs? Did they address the underlying degradation causes and were the rehabilitated areas maintained in the long term? What are the most promising approaches? Which ones can be replicated at low cost by local institutions and actors? Which ones are self-sustaining at the local level? What enabling factors are required to...