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Center for International Forestry Research Jln. Center for International Forestry Research P. BrasilCasilla de CorreosMontevideo, Uruguay lacroinf idrc.
Comunidades locales 5. Manejo Forestal 6. Bolivia 7. Brasil 8. Costa Rica 9. Guatemala Honduras Nicaragua Decentralization 2. Local Government 3.
Municipalities 4. Communities 5. Forest Management 6. Brazil 8. Latin America I. Published in Municipalities and local participation in forest management in Bolivia Pablo Pacheco. Municipal forest management in Nicaragua: Decentralized burdens, centralized benefits? Anne M. The authors would like to thank all those who, in a great spirit of collaboration, shared their perceptions, knowledge and information with us to make the preparation of this book possible. We express our gratitude to the municipal authorities, representatives of community organizations, indigenous and peasant leaders, loggers, public officials and project technicians who one way or another contributed their knowledge to make the preparation of this book possible.
We hope that all of them find information and ideas in it that help stimulate their reflections, enrich their knowledge and support the development of their proposals for improvements and new options to support municipal forest management. Among the major political and economic trends that have been evolving in Latin America in recent years, the emergence of municipal governments as frontline actors stands out.
The strengthening of municipal governments has strong implications for forest management. Municipal governments are increasingly involved in forestry issues: they grant permits, charge taxes, administer their own forests, create parks, prohibit activities, plant trees and take sides in conflicts. They also implement non-forest activities that have a strong impact on forest resources, including road construction, the creation of agricultural credit programs and soil use planning.
Nonetheless, municipal governments in many places have taken the initiative without either the support or the blessing of the central government, sometimes even illegally. The fact that municipal governments now have more political power and greater financial and human resources — and in many countries are now elected rather than named by the central power — means a political capital that has allowed them to sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo involved in new spheres, including forestry and environmental issues, despite not always having a clear mandate to do so.
This book represents the first serious attempt to analyze recent experiences of municipal participation in forest management in Latin America. It is the product of a series of investigations in Bolivia, Brazil, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua in which more than 30 national and international researchers participated. It will unquestionably be required reading for anyone concerned with municipal administration and natural resource management.
The studies paint a very diverse reality since each municipality has its own particularities. In fact, it is to be expected that much more complex situations will occur if each municipal government can make important decisions regarding management of and access to the forests than with a single national policy. Although the reality is very diverse, however, it is not a random diversity.
Municipalities with large urban centers generally have a more structured environmental administration. Those on the agricultural frontier have ificant economic dynamism linked to logging and the expansion of livestock raising in forested areas.
In such cases, municipal governments tend to give less support to sustainable forest management than in municipalities that have already lost a large part of their forests or make their living from extraction of the various forest resources. The authors sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo that if negative have been obtained in some areas because the municipalities have become involved in forest management, it is not a consequence of democratic decentralization, but rather the very lack of it.
In some countries, the national government has ased the municipal governments new attributions regarding forest issues without the corresponding financial and human resources. Before abandoning the idea of decentralizing natural resource management, it laxies at least be tested more seriously and coherently than has been done so far. In any event, the key question is not whether municipalities should or should not be involved in forestry issues.
Everything indicates that they already are, and that the process will soon sbbf irreversible. The more urgent question is how to improve municipal participation to make it advantageous for the local communities and the forests. This book offers many clues in that direction. It has been a great pleasure and source of pride for the Center for International Forestry Research CIFOR to have had the opportunity to participate in these studies alongside other national research centers, independent researchers and technical and financial cooperation agencies.
I would like to thank the authors for their work and to invite readers to enter a new world where mayors are responsible not just for constructing public plazas and collecting the garbage, and municipal officials are dedicated not only to issuing birth certificates. Ours is a world of conflicts, interests, innovations, successes and failures; it is full of loggers, cattle ranchers, miners, peasants, indigenous peoples and employees, all participants and all responsible for the sustainable management laddies our resources.
Many governments in developing countries have implemented public policy reforms in the past decade, including the decentralizing of their state administrations. These reforms are the product of both internal political democratization processes and the influence seeming international agencies. The most common formal decentralization model emphasizes the provision of public services such as education or health.
Nonetheless, many countries have begun to grant local governments greater rights and responsibilities regarding natural resource management, including forest resources. In fact, during seekng s, municipal governments 1 in various Latin American countries took initiatives linked to logging, reforestation, protected area management, fire control and many other forestry-related activities fog or without formal policies decentralizing forest management to them Kaimowitz et al.
The sgf objective of this publication, then, is to evaluate the municipal government role in forest management, based on the experiences of six Latin American countries: Bolivia, Brazil, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. The central questions we look at are:. The book is divided into three parts. It also summarizes the context in which this book is written and the main characteristics of the countries in which the case studies were undertaken.
The order in which they appear corresponds to the degree of forest sector decentralization, starting with the most decentralized country. Decentralization refers to the transfer of power from a central authority to lower levels in a political, administrative and territorial hierarchy Crook and Manor This transfer can take different forms. Administrative decentralization, also known as deconcentration, refers to a transfer of powers from the central public bureaucracy to its own regional or local offices Fisher This form of decentralization does not seek a real redistribution of authority and, according to Crook and Manorrather tends to extend the central authority to a territorial level through a simple relocation of its agents.
Similarly, municipality refers to this broader jurisdiction. In the United States, the most similar equivalent otjer be county. The decentralization that most interests us in this book is the latter: democratic decentralization. According to Ribotwith whom we agree, decentralization demonstrates its greatest potential for improving efficiency and social equity only through democratic mechanisms.
To be democratic, decentralization requires that the territorial authorities be legally recognized and have certain decision-making autonomy and the power to make discretionary decisions Crook and Manor It also requires that the authorities who receive these powers represent the population that elected them and be able for their actions to that population through transparent local administration ManorAgrawal and Ribot The World Bank sustains that decentralization should improve resource distribution, efficiency, ability and equity World Bank The goals of decentralization coincide with what many experts have proposed as the conditions necessary for sustainable natural resource management.
For example, local people are more likely to identify and as priority to their environmental problems accurately.
Marginal groups could have greater influence on local policies and access to the benefits of exploiting forest resources. Decentralization could also permit more effective and efficient coordination around local resource problems, as the formal and informal contacts among different people and institutions are likely to increase when they are working in the same locale CarneyKaimowitz et al.
With respect to natural resource management, and forest management in particular, numerous mechanisms exist for delegating or transferring functions in the name of toher, but not all of these constitute democratic decentralization. One common example is the manzsnillo of central government functions to nongovernmental organizations NGOs for managing protected areas through various kinds of t xingle projects. As NGOs are not popularly elected or necessarily able to local ladie, this type ladied decentralization rather constitutes a delegation of tasks, defined by the central government, to civil society organizations.
Competencies for administering protected sdeking have also been transferred directly to local communities. This may or may not constitute democratic decentralization, depending on the organization and leadership structures in the communities that receive the. Nonetheless, community-based natural resource management experiences suggest that local governments, as elected and representative bodies, can and should play an important role RibotCarney and Farrington Ribot also notes that the majority of community-based management projects have been promoted, financed and controlled to a certain point by international donors and NGOs, which hinders their generalization and long-term sustainability.
As mentioned, the initial motivations for transferring rights and responsibilities regarding forest resources sibgle the local level have been to reduce government bureaucracy, democratize tor about forest management, distribute the benefits sintle from forest resources more equitably and regulate forest management activities more efficiently Ribot Nonetheless, these benefits have not always been evident in practice. The transfer of responsibilities to local governments, where this has actually occurred, has produced ambiguous that sometimes contradict what policy promoters had in mind AnderssonPacheco et al.
This suggests that decentralization not only offers opportunities for better forest management but also entails potential dangers. In practice, it has been seen that democratic ladiex faces two types of limitations and risks. The first relates to the very decentralization processes promoted by the central government. Despite ladiies theoretical benefits of democratic decentralization, implementation of the model is highly limited, particularly with respect to natural resource management.
In general, the new competencies transferred are purely administrative, and even then are unaccompanied by the funds or clear operational mechanisms needed to assume them. In fact, there is a danger in transferring responsibilities to municipal governments without toher transferring the information, training and financing lxdies for them to carry out their new functions. Failure otuer do so could even discredit decentralization itself.
In the Latin American context, many municipalities lack the necessary technical and administrative capacities to play an effective shf in managing natural resources. When the needed training and support is unavailable or ineffective, as is often the case, it is difficult for many local governments to develop and implement natural resource management activities seeeking are both efficient and of an acceptable quality Pacheco et al. The second type of danger is related to this local context.
In addition to capacity problems, the greatest potential risks are those associated with both the threat of specific population sectors sbff elites monopolizing local power and the limited organizational capacity of other local groups to pressure for a sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo and effective local administration. In such cases, decentralization could serve to strengthen the local elite large farmers and ranchers, as well as logging interests instead of local democracy.
In fact, elite capture can weaken not only the democratization process itself but also local government legitimacy. The sustainability of forest resources could also be threatened if local elites promote irrational natural resource use. Nonetheless, this term has been used with such diverse meanings and intentions that we have chosen to avoid its use. The challenge for the future is to promote decentralization processes that build municipal governments with real power that can be and is assumed both capably and responsibly.
These governments, as local coordinators and leaders, should become catalysts of sustainable local development interests and policies in response to interests and policies defined at the central level. It is therefore essential to create decision-making and problem-solving mechanisms that permit a balance between national and local development interests and needs in a way that favors resource sustainability and equitable access to the benefits of natural resource management in each region.
How to achieve that balance is one of the greatest challenges in deing and implementing decentralized forest management in Latin Ladiee. Highly centralized forestry administrations have achieved limited in effectively regulating forest resources in almost all countries of the region, mainly due to a lack of funding, scant physical presence in the field, limited access to informal information flows and poorly motivated field personnel Pacheco et al. It is thus a priority to begin analyzing these municipal forest management experiences, to better understand the risks and opportunities and be able to support and promote incipient processes with a good chance of achieving positive in the future.
So far, few studies have examined municipal forest resource management in any depth. In addition, most of these experiences are new, so it is not yet clear whether their will be beneficial or harmful in the long run. It is the result of an initiative of the Center for International Forestry Research CIFOR and the International Development Research Centre IDRCin collaboration with the many different institutions mentioned in the acknowledgments, to analyze the evolution of municipal forest management in different singke, national and local contexts.
The six cases analyzed in this book were chosen based on two main criteria: the lavies of forest sector decentralization policies among the countries and the dynamics observed in the municipalities themselves. Four of the chapters are based on research ly undertaken in Bolivia, Brazil, Nicaragua and Costa Rica by manzanilko of the institutions that contributed to this work. The Honduran and Guatemalan cases were incorporated because of the importance of recently promoted decentralization policies in those two countries.
Each country case study describes and analyzes the current municipal forest management situation as well as the opportunities and challenges these decentralization experiences. Each study analyzes the following issues: the national forestry context; the legal structure of decentralization in the forestry sector within the context of national decentralization policies in general; the experiences of municipal forest management, including different local initiatives ladoes the relations of local governments with both central agencies and local stakeholders.
Each chapter concludes with a final analysis and recommendations. To place the reader in the general setting of the six countries, we sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo below a brief summary of the most salient characteristics of decentralization in each. Since the mid-nineties, Bolivia has made important progress toward democratic decentralization to the municipalities as the result of a process associated with institutionalizing greater popular participation.
At the same time, important efforts have been developed to decentralize sbv management, although a ificant portion of decision-making authority remains centralized.
In other words, although municipal governments have become key protagonists in forest management, their powers and capacities to make discretionary decisions are still limited. Despite this, Bolivia is one of the Latin American countries that have decentralized functions to municipal governments to the greatest degree. Seekong practice, that mechanism permits the formalization of rights to forest exploitation for small-scale loggers and other traditional forest users.
The law also establishes that indigenous groups are the owners of the forest resources within their legally recognized territories. There was also strong local and departmental pressure sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo rechannel fiscal revenue from forests to those levels. They must also inspect forest concessions and sawmills, oversee fulfillment of forest management plans, establish preventive measures for activities that endanger the forest, request the seizure of illegal products and establish registries of forest plantations and native forests.
The decentralization implemented under this law has redefined local power relations; in many cases, the local elite have gradually been forced to recognize the presence of groups that were ly marginalized and must now even negotiate with fkr. Decentralization has created some new opportunities for indigenous groups, settlers and small-scale loggers to access forest resources and somewhat weakened mnazanillo position of concessionaires, hacienda.
Nonetheless, the complexity of local power dynamics makes it difficult to generalize about the benefits of decentralization for marginalized groups; indeed, there are clear cases where decentralization has instead helped strengthen certain local elites whose presence was already strong. Almost all municipalities with forests now have a UFM. These units have been quite active in delimiting municipal forest areas; many have become involved in forest management and the control of illegal felling or have promoted forestry projects.
Despite the progress achieved, however, regulatory powers over forest resource use remain concentrated at the central level, and municipal governments have very little influence over these decisions.
With the promulgation of the Law for the Modernization and Development of the Agricultural Sectorthe Municipalities Law and the General Environment Lawprivate forest ownership was recognized in Honduras and the basis was established for decentralizing forest management. This situation manzanill unique in Latin America, as it implies that municipal governments are de jure owners of important forested areas from which they could generate ificant income.
Municipal governments also have responsibilities in controlling and reviewing management plans in national and private forested areas, although coordinating with COHDEFOR does not always work well in practice. The decentralization of forest management to municipal governments in Guatemala has been promoted through several specific mechanisms that foster local forestry activities. Strong international aid projects have provided essential support to these initiatives. Municipal governments enjoy certain responsibilities related to controlling and overseeing forest resources as well as supporting reforestation and forest management; for example, the formulating, approving and implementing development plans for municipal forest resources as well as local tax collection.
Guatemala is the only country in which the central forestry agency is clearly leading the process of decentralizing forest management to municipal governments. Various municipal environmental offices have been created through this project. Despite this progress, the decentralization of forest management in Guatemala still faces important challenges.
The municipal government offices have no real decision-making power over forest resources, as decentralization policies focus only on seekinng the responsibility to coordinate with and support INAB. Even with this, positive local trends can be noted. Various municipalities become involved in forest management initiatives, either because they receive support from outside projects or simply because municipal governments have been pressured by manzabillo populations to seekibg so.
In this regard, local governments are becoming increasingly involved in reforestation activities, fire control, provision of technical services, establishment of tree nurseries and conflict mediation. In particular, the reforms incorporated into the Municipalities Law in increased local government competencies and autonomy. Nonetheless, the real possibility for effective autonomy is limited by the extremely low budgets with which many of them must attempt to implement their mandates.
Regarding the decentralization process, the municipalities feel that the central government has transferred the burden of environmental management but not the benefits in terms of either authority or income.
Despite existing limitations, however, numerous municipalities have taken important initiatives: approving or objecting to logging contracts; granting domestic felling permits on small volumes ; promoting environmental, agroforestry and reforestation projects; organizing forest fire and pest control campaigns; developing environmental and land use plans; declaring protected areas; hiring technical personnel and forest rangers; approving ordinances to normalize forest and other resource use; charging taxes and fines for legal and illegal logging; and managing forestry funds.
In contrast, however, natural resource or environmental management has not specifically been decentralized to local governments, although they can and do have important indirect effects on forest resources because of the overall autonomy sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo they enjoy and their authority over other relevant decision-making arenas — for example, the development of municipal infrastructure and management of credit funds.
The state institute responsible for the environment and forests, IBAMA, has little political support, few resources and is in no capacity to exercise real control over logging or oversee the implementation of forest management plans. This situation is ed by the fact that the Brazilian municipalities receive important economic transfers from the federal government and thus are not always as motivated as other countries to get involved in forestry activities in the search for income.
In the Amazon region, many residents favor a development model that promotes reducing the forested area. For example, powerful local leaders, including some mayors, are frequently loggers or cattle ranchers and oppose the creation of protected areas or extractive reserves or the delimitation of indigenous territories. The majority of local governments involved in such activities enjoy the support of nongovernmental organizations or central government projects.
There are also municipal leaders who have promoted forest. The municipal governments have no direct forest management responsibilities, but this has not always been the case. The problems that generated led to the re-transfer of the competence to the Regional Conservation Area Councils. In practice, however, SINAC now grants the permits because of problems that arose in the creation of those councils. The existing legal framework establishes various kinds of collection mechanisms to transfer revenue generated by forest activity to the municipalities.
In practice, however, local governments have come up against numerous political and legal obstacles when they have tried to take advantage of these mechanisms. Despite limited authority and funds, there are several examples of municipalities that have undertaken important forest management activities and, in some cases, have even consolidated municipal environmental offices. Agrawal, A. Journal of Developing Areas 33 4 : Andersson, K.
What motivates municipal governments? Uncovering institutional incentives for municipal governance of forest resources. Journal of Environment paid announcement. Resource Management and Institutional Change. Routledge, London. Carney, D. Natural Resource Management and Institutional Change. ODI, London. Crook, R. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. Fisher, R. Unasylva 50 4 : Kaimowitz, D. Municipal governments and forest management in lowland Bolivia. Journal of Environment and Development 7 1 Bosques y Desarrollo no.
Larson, A. World Development 30 1 : Manor, J. The Political Economy of Democratic Decentralization. World Bank, Washington, DC. Democratic decentralization and the issue of inequity. Conference on Decentralization and the Environment. World Resources Institute. Bellagio, Italy. Margulis, S. Decentralized Environmental Management.
Onibon, A. Pacheco, P. Bosques y Sociedad no. Ribot, J. Unasylva 50 4 Valverde, J. Manejo descentralizado de los recursos naturales. World Bank. New York, Oxford University Press. Although decentralization has focused mainly on the provision of social services, numerous countries have begun to give local governments more rights and responsibilities over their natural resources, including forests.
Some studies show that decentralization has diverse and sometimes contradictory in practice, depending on variables such as the political economy of the municipalities, the composition of their government and the importance of forest resources to their economy, among others AnderssonPacheco and KaimowitzRibot This suggests that decentralization is a process that brings with it both opportunities and threats.
The important thing is to recognize both to make this process contribute more efficiently to improving the distribution of forest resources among the populations that subsist from them, facilitate more democratic decision-making and conserve the forests better. This chapter identifies the opportunities and limitations of decentralizing forest management in Bolivia. Important steps have been taken to construct democratic decentralization in Bolivia as the result of a municipalization process associated with popular participation that got underway in At the same time, there have been important efforts to decentralize forest management, although many decisions about these resources are still made at the central level.
The information comes from interviews with key informants, particularly concentrated in nine lowlands municipalities, in three different periods between and Following the introduction, the chapter is divided into five parts. The first briefly describes the lowland forests and the conditions under which the main social stakeholders have access to the forestland and its resources.
The second describes the legal and institutional context of municipal forest management, as well as the decentralization model. The last part contains final reflections, analyzes the elements of decentralization that are indeed functioning and proposes some activities that should be implemented to improve their. A sizable part of the lowland forests has been selectively exploited, an activity that became important in the seventies and grew rapidly during the nineties. Only four tree species — mara Swietenia macrophyllacedar cedrela sp.
Exploited at rates that impeded their natural regeneration, these species are now the least abundant, so the lumber companies and small loggers have begun using those of lesser commercial value despite the less attractive market conditions for them Dauber et al. Most of the deforestation occurs in the lowlands and has tended to increase rapidly in the past decade. Deforestation for the country as a whole was around 80, ha per year during the eighties, increasing at an annual rate of 0.
The accelerated degradation of the forests as well as growing concern about conserving the biodiversity led the Bolivian government to implement an ecological zoning system accompanied by soil use plans and plans to extend the protected areas.
Toward the end of the nineties, the three departments that cover the lower part of the lowlands already had a soil use plan PLUS and some soil use planning exercises were being initiated at the municipal level. Improvements in the transport system have linked the lowland region more to other areas, sparking greater migration and increasing pressure on the forests. The region has very heterogeneous land systems, ranging from private ownership systems to othet systems in indigenous areas.
The indigenous populations, small farmers or settlers and a diverse group of small-scale loggers as well as those who collect non-wood forestry products are the social groups singlee subsist to some degree on forest resources. The information available on land tenure is not very reliable. Estimates based on official statistics are that around 23 million of the 76 million ha making up the region were provided to medium and large farmers or cattle ranchers Pacheco a.
The indigenous groups have demanded that some Inthe lumber companies reduced the area they occupied as concessions from 20 million ha to 5. In addition, nearly one million fir were tagged for municipal forest reserves by SF The lowland settlers are organized into agrarian unions that form part of larger organizations at the departmental and national level.
The indigenous peoples, in turn, are organized into sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo authority systems made up of extensive pan-regional organizations. This situation has changed substantially after decentralization, as will manzanilpo analyzed below. weeking
This section discusses the characteristics of decentralization in Bolivia. It first presents the background to the broader decentralization process and then describes the main elements that motivated the decentralization of forest management. Following that it analyzes the main regulations growing out of the forest policy reforms of the mid-nineties, and finally describes the responsibilities and powers in forest management transferred to the municipal governments.
Bolivia has a long tradition of centralized government. Mayors were also deated from above; their. Until the early sixties, given their minimal economic importance and scant population, the lowlands were marginalized by the national political center located in the capital city of La Paz. By the end of the seventies, in response to growing pressure from different regional groups, the government finally took the first ificant step toward decentralization, establishing departmental development corporations to implement regional planning and invest in development projects.
The income for these corporations originated in the royalties from oil, gas, minerals and timber, as well as national treasury revenues. Although sitting on the boards of these corporations offered the regional elite an opportunity to influence investment decisions, the process was one of administrative deconcentration rather than decentralization; the central government continued naming the corporation presidents, who also answered to the departmental prefects Kaimowitz et al.
Ina reform to the Municipalities Law instituted elections for the municipal governments. This reform, however, established no mechanism by which mayors and municipal councilors would be able to their constituency for their actions, and in practice they continued answering to the hierarchies of their respective political parties. Not until the mid-nineties did decentralization take center stage on the public policy reform agenda, and then due mainly to growing pressure from groups in the regions to gain more control over their own affairs, although the general decentralization trend in neighboring countries and its increasing importance on the international aid agenda also had an influence Kaimowitz et al.
Decentralization was promoted through the Law of Popular Participation No. The first modified the functions of the municipal governments and the second those of the prefectures or departmental governments. It made municipal governments responsible for health and education services, highways and potable water.
This law also transferred management of the urban and rural cadastres to the municipal governments, together with the tax income on real estate and automotive vehicles. Under this decentralization model, the municipal governments were put in charge of planning part of public investment, oriented by plans formulated with participation by the different local stakeholders under municipal government leadership. All social organizations, whether indigenous or peasant communities, agrarian unions or urban neighborhood.
The Administrative Decentralization Law, in turn, abolished the regional development sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo and transferred their functions and most of their assets to the prefectures, which at that point became responsible for regional development planning. This law has not had effects as dramatic as those achieved by popular participation in a very short time, nor did it modify the fact that the central government still elects the prefects, which means they must still report their actions to the central level.
Although councils have been created with the participation of departmental delegates, they are only consultative. The transfer of natural resource management responsibilities was partly an indirect consequence of the broader decentralization process, partly the result of regional struggles to ensure that forested regions would benefit from the lumber use and, to a lesser degree, a response to the growing international consensus favoring greater local participation in forest management Kaimowitz et al.
Regarding the first aspect, although the Law of Popular Participation granted the municipal governments no new explicit function related to natural resource management, it indirectly helped some of them get more involved in natural resource issues through the greater authority they received from the central government. Such issues include the inspection of lumber transport within their municipalities and charging royalties on lumbering activities so as to retain part of the benefits for their municipalities.
In addition, as the municipal governments became progressively more influential, the national government and international donors began to seek them out as partners in environmental projects. As for the second aspect, the regional organizations fought for nearly forty years to gain greater participation in forestry policy formulation and the distribution of lumber royalties where this resource was extracted.
Provincial civic committees, which grouped together diverse local civil society groups, had an active role in this ongoing battle.
In the mid-eighties, regional civic movements influenced the deconcentration of the national Forest Sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo Center CDF and demanded the creation of departmental forest policies. Deconcentrating the CDF and creating departmental services did not make the forestry service any more effective or efficient, but did contribute to the formulation laxies departmental forest policies.
The institution maintained its reputation as corrupt and ineffective Quiroga and Salinas A third factor promoting the decentralization of forestry resource management was the international trend to promote greater community participation in resource management and administration of protected areas.
Although this factor was less important than the others, it helped place decentralization on the agenda of reforms. In Bolivia, the aid agencies exerted no direct pressure to get it underway. The new Forestry Law assumes that sustainable forest management is possible through the implementation of appropriate management practices. To that end, a monitoring system was created for lumber management and extraction, together with some market regulations and tax reforms to make unsustainable and illegal forest operations less attractive.
Source : Prepared by author based on Forestry Law No. According to the legislation, non-commercial use of forest resources does not require authorization, but all commercial operations to extract timber and other forest products require a management plan. In this second case, both forest concessionaires and private owners are obliged to de management plans including forest inventories, species mapping and estimates of the forest potential as the main regulatory instrument for logging.
The management plans must follow technical criteria prepared for that purpose, of which the main ones are:. Forest concessionaires may contracts with third parties for the use of non-timber products, but forest concessions for such products may only be recognized in areas where these resources predominate. Their exploitation must also respect management plans with annual targets. Clearing forest areas also requires formal authorization, following the evaluation of annual clear-cutting plans that must be formulated based on plot-level land use plans known as POP.
The clearing of up to five ha of land surface, considered cumulatively, is tax exempt. Some of the conditions established in the Forestry Law and its regulations were hard to apply in practice. Although the forest concessions shifted gradually to the new system, that process was more conflictive when it involved small and medium rural owners and small loggers who up to then had engaged in their activities in an informal setting.
The most important were those linked to illegal exploitation in permanent forest reserves or protected areas by groups without formal access, the need to improve sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo forest management control and inspection systems with. The decentralization process was already underway when the regulations were deed, and municipal authorities had earned greater authority within the national political system.
During the reform process, the municipal governments assumed the regional demands that more of the income generated by forest resource exploitation be allocated to the departments and municipalities where the exploitation took place and spoke on behalf of small producers and loggers to improve their access and legalize their rights to forest use. The institutional forestry system thus could not fail to consider the municipal governments as relevant stakeholders in the new system.
Furthermore, the central government was interested in controlling illegal logging in public forests, which could be achieved by recognizing the rights of groups that were informally pressuring for access to these areas and by involving the municipalities in the inspection. While new functions were transferred to the municipalities, the central government retained for itself decision-making on asing and distributing forest resources, formalizing of forest permits and defining forest management and use regulations.
In this context, although the policies make local governments key actors in implementing the forestry system, they still have limited powers to make autonomous decisions about the forest resources within their jurisdiction and are usually viewed as implementing agencies for centrally defined policies. Decentralization has involved transferring responsibilities and certain decision-making authority to the municipal governments regarding benefits from local forest resources.
Nonetheless, the central level read MDSP and SF reserves for itself an important set of functions, among them decisions about asing the bulk of the forest reserves and establishing the political and legal framework for resource management, as well as defining the technical norms for forest resource exploitation. The system for monitoring activities and controlling forest crime is also a central responsibility, albeit shared with the municipalities. Research activities as well technical assistance and support to local institutional development were delegated to the prefectures.
The funds from the forest use and clearing fees provide the resources for implementing these functions. According to the Forestry Law art. The following chart summarizes the forest management competencies transferred from the central level to the municipal governments and the capacities those governments could.
The term ASL covers a broad spectrum of local groups, such as chainsaw operators and informal workers. Once the areas are approved, the respective municipal government must prepare a program of concessions for the ASLs. In addition to delimiting the AFRMs, the municipal governments are supposed to inform the ASLs of their rights and duties and aid them in drawing up and implementing their forest management plans, using the resources to be coned in their Municipal Development Plans PDMs for that purpose.
Such resources should be used for forest and agroforest plantations, and for protecting native forests in coordination with local groupings. The Forestry Law transfers a broader set of oversight tasks and control of forest resource use to the municipalities, among them:. Source : Prepared by author based on Andersonforestry Law No. Within six months after receiving these funds, each municipal government or association of municipalities must establish a Municipal Forestry Unit UFMfollowing the minimum implementation level determined by an SF Technical Directive No.
The SF is empowered to request that the National Senate withhold funds from the UFMs if they do not fulfill their functions and to assume the attributions of these units. Financial resources are required to effectively implement the functions transferred to the UFMs, particularly for the tasks of inspecting and controlling forest management and clear-cutting. Skill in negotiating with private agents or aid agencies is no less an important requisite.
It also transferred new responsibilities associated with this revenue, among them the development of UFM support programs, as well as delegating forest research tasks and the de of development plans for the forest sector in their respective departments. In general, the forestry units have concentrated on classifying forest areas and supporting the formation of ASLs by local logging groups, as well as drawing up management and clearing plans. They have given less priority to activities such as controlling exploitation operations without forest permits and inspecting illegal clearing.
The drafting of soil use plans is also less important to the municipal governments and their relationship to the protected areas has been ambiguous. Municipal governments began to receive revenue from forest s around the end of The support they also received from forest projects or NGOs became a factor that stimulated getting these units underway. The willingness of these municipalities to dedicate their own resources to forest management activities at least partly reflects a genuine interest in the issue, although it also resulted from their belief that spending money on such activities would help attract additional funds from outside agencies in the future.
Although this generates greater demand pressure on these units, it has also led to recognition of the value of the work many of them can do in the municipal public investment planning processes, formulation of development proposals and support to local groups. In some cases, creation of the UFMs has been a slow process, but a large part of the municipalities that receive part of the forest income have already established one.
Local governments have usually focused investment in urban development programs and projects, the majority of which are located in the municipal seats, and in constructing road infrastructure. They have gradually been paying more attention to investment in educational infrastructure and health programs and have made ificant investments in the social field, but their support to the productive sectors is still quite weak.
All this makes them see the forestry sector as a very low priority for spending allocations. This has largely been because the companies with forest concessions have not been complying with the payments for the forest use s, which means that those resources have dropped for the whole of the public forest system. Payment of the forestry fees by the concessions was under discussion as of mid The SF has opted to negotiate collection of the fees arguing that returning concession areas to the state would weaken the forest system as a whole.
This raises doubts about whether the current system of financial underpinnings for the public forest system is the best, or whether it should in fact receive resources from outsi de the sector. The amounts that municipal governments receive from forestry s are quite unequal. Consequently, a good part of the municipalities do not have enough resources to set up UFMs in optimum conditions and, as was mentioned, the municipal governments, with few exceptions, are unwilling to invest part of their own resources in them.
It established a set of requisites that included minimum personnel and equipment that all UFMs should have as an eligibility condition for receiving the forestry revenue for them. A UFM technical team must include a director forestry or agronomic engineertwo foresters, a driver and a secretary. They must also have a vehicle, a motorcycle, a set of maps and technical instruments such as GPS, compass and clinometer, as well as field equipment.
In practice, the UFMs have fairly heterogeneous characteristics.
A survey applied by the SF to 32 directors of these units in found that the UFM director is the only employee in 20 of them, another 11 have one support technician and only 1 that of San Ignacio de Velasco functions with two technicians, none of laeies are professionally trained. It is infrequent to find forestry engineers as UFM directors, with only 8 of the 32 directors interviewed having that professional formation while 20 are agronomic engineers and the other 4 have other preparation.
A similar thing happens with laides 13 support technicians, only 1 of whom is a forester. In many cases, the Municipal Forestry Units have no work plans or do not fulfill them even if drawn up. In addition, the work plans usually suffer severe budget cuts when they are.
With few exceptions, the municipal governments only as minimum resources to finance the personnel and most urgent operating expenses of their forestry units Pacheco Few UFMs are able to fulfill all the functions for which they were created because of other municipal investment priorities and above all the fact that not all municipalities receive enough income from the forestry fees to be able to finance all the requirements of these units.
The municipal governments that have earmarked resources for hiring personnel and equipping their forestry units are those that, in general, received greater average income from the forestry fees between andwhich to some degree reflects the importance of the economic activity of forests in those municipalities. The role of the UFMs has been essential to developing forestry operations by the Local Social Associations ASLsabove all in the municipalities where informal logging by local groups was traditionally relevant the cases of Rurrenabaque in the department of Beni, San Buenaventura in La Paz and the three municipalities of Velasco province in Santa Cruz.
The of ASLs that presented their classification request to the Ministry of Sustainable Development and Planning MDSP totaled 41, of which the ministry qualified 20 between July and Maywhile the rest had to complete their documentation Pacheco From the request for legal standing through to their final qualification by the MDSP, the process of qualifying the ASLs has been characterized as particularly slow and bureaucratic.
During the initial period of creating the ASLs, numerous leadership disputes flared up in the organizations in some cases leading to internal splits or conflicts linked to. These problems were aggravated by a lack of democracy within the associations and by the decision-making monopoly exercised by their founders. In general, these groups emerged with little clarity about the internal mechanisms to be used for decision-making, use of their resources and distribution of the benefits Pacheco These problems were not irreparable and many ASLs took advantage of the lessons learned.
The forestry units collaborated actively with the ASLs in preparing the documentation required by the MDSP, providing information on the procedures and facilitating information to the Municipal Councils to streamline the initial steps for approving the associations. This was also a long and complicated process and many municipal governments have not yet succeeded in defining their municipal forest areas. Despite the fact that many UFMs with potential areas to be declared municipal reserves received sbf seeking other single ladies for manzanillo from forest projects, as was the case of the Bolivian Forestry project BOLFOR7 and from some NGOS for mapping and delimiting the areas, the real problem originated in the lack of clarity about property ownership rights in those areas.
This program has made very slow progress and not all areas with tenure conflicts have yet been provided guarantees. This makes the whole process depend on the progress of the indemnification. Conflicts over superimposition of rights in Municipal Forest Reserve Areas. In Augustthe municipal government of San Buenaventura requested the creation of an AFRM, which was denied because it totally superimposed the territorial demand of the Tacana peoples, which INRA had accepted in January of the same year.
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