Status: In the area of conservation and protection of natural resources, the country has experienced both losses and modest gains. Forests and protected areas have suffered losses over these years (forest cover is 57.59%, below the minimum level of 60%). On the positive side, legal frameworks and national strategic plans are now in place for natural resource management and the numbers of Community Based Forestry (390) groups are steadily increasing.
In the Fisheries sector, the number of Community Fishery Groups (CFi) has increased from 246 in 2002 to 469 in 2010.
Both rural water and sanitation are on track to meet the targets set in 2003, (water 39.3% out of 41%) and sanitation (23.2% out of 23%).
In land titling, current progress (24%) is below the projected target for 2009 (33%), but the pace of registration has more than doubled in 2009 to over 400,000 land titles issued. At this rate, it is expected that only 58 percent out of the CMDG 2015 target of 65 percent will be achieved.
Challenges: Both protected area and forests are under severe pressure from illegal logging, encroachment, economic land concessions and insufficient numbers of rangers. Formal registration process of Community Based Forestry and Community Fishery Groups are slow and must be accelerated. The proportion of households dependent on fuel wood has not decreased as planned and remains very high. While both targets of rural water and sanitation are on track, they should be revised upwards to conform to the intent of the global target of halving the proportion of people without access to safe water and sanitation.
The Way Forward: The government plans to reinforce the protection and management of forests, decrease the pressure on forests by improving farming techniques and reducing dependence on fuel wood, and engage in an active program of forest rehabilitation and reforestation, including commercial plantations and increasingly engaging community groups for the protection and sustainable management of forest resources.
Target, Actual and Projected Forest Cover (% of total land)
Source: Forestry Administration