World Rainforest Movement

Campaign on Forest Definition

2011 was declared the International Year of Forests by the United Nations. In response, WRM has launched a campaign that challenges the definition of “forest” used by FAO. This is not a simple matter of semantics: FAO’s definition of forest has negative repercussions at the local and global level because it legitimizes the expansion of industrial monoculture tree plantations. Even worse, other UN organizations and initiatives, such as the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, as well as numerous national governments, use this same definition in negotiations, programmes and policies.

This has led us to develop a number of different activities that we detail below


Articles from the WRM Bulletin

Books and Briefings

  • Forest definition

    When we talk about “the definition of forest”, what is perhaps most striking is the fact that, although there are many definitions of the word “forest” in different parts of the world, there is one definition viewed as more...

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Other Relevant Information


  • But, where is the water?

    On the 21st of March, International Day of the Forests, the FAO has launched another nice video. This year the video is about forests and water. Did you notice the video does not include any monoculture tree plantations, even though FAO...

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  • Forests. Much more than a lot of trees

    Produced by the World Rainforest Movement Directed by Flavio Pazos The United Nations declared 2011 as the International Year of Forests You may have already heard that the livelihoods of over 1.6 billion people depend on forests, that...

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  • Short animation – Let’s define forests by their true meaning

    Also available in: Afrikaans, Aymara, Catala, Chinese, Dutch, Finish, German, Bosnian, Italian, Maori, Mapuche, Maya Kaqchikel, Maya Popti, Maya Tseltal, Maya Tsotsil, Swedish, Vietnamese and Zulu Following FAO’s criterion for the...

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