African forests are rich in biodiversity and provide a livelihood for more than 1 billion people. They store massive amounts of carbon and play a part in regulating climate. Forests are a global public good; they have value for the whole world. Yet they remain underfunded.
Funding forests means funding people to manage them sustainably. And this does not come cheap. For many developing nations, the money is needed for other important things like education and health, too.
In today’s episode of Pasha, Robert Nasi, director general of the Centre for International Forestry Research, discusses the importance of funding for African forests. He says countries that benefit from them are obliged to help pay for their management. Huge amounts of money are spent on things like weapons and on fossil fuel subsidies. So the money is there, he says; it needs political will to redirect it to protecting and restoring African forests.
Hidden Ekom Waterfall deep in the tropical rain forest of Cameroon, Africa by Fabian Plock found on Shutterstock