Washington-based forestry firm Planting Empowerment contributes case studies to two publications relating to its operations in Panama; focuses on driving private investment in sustainable forest models, increasing community involvement

WASHINGTON , February 5, 2013 (press release) – Planting Empowerment, a Washington, DC-based forestry company with operations in Panama, today announced its contributions to two industry-leading tropical forestry publications.

The company contributed case studies to the European Tropical Forest Research Network’s (ETFRN)/Tropenbos report Good Business: Making Private Investments Work for Tropical Forests, and the Guide to Investing in Locally Controlled Forestry, published by Growing Forest Partnerships in association with the FAO, IIED, IUCN, The Forests Dialogue and the World Bank.

“The case studies featured in the Guide to Investing in Locally Controlled Forestry and the ETFRN News 54 give you a sense of the innovative work organizations are doing to drive private investment towards sustainable forestry models and increase local control of tropical forests” said Planting Empowerment advisor Chris Meyer. “We’re honored to be a part of that group.”

The Guide to Investing in Locally Controlled Forestry is the product of a series of meetings called the Growing Forest Partnerships Initiative. The initiative, managed by The Forests Dialogue, brought together investors, forest rights-holders, policy makers, and donors for a series of meetings to develop a set of recommendations to increase investment flows into locally controlled forestry.

The ETFRN/Tropenbos publication looks more broadly at the role private finance plays in the restoration and sustainable management of tropical forests. With an estimated investment of $15 billion per year, the private sector represents the largest investor in sustainable forestry.

“These publications give us confidence that investment flows into sustainable and locally controlled forestry will only increase as investors recognize the financial, environmental and social benefits that sustainable forestry provides”, said Meyer. “We expect to leverage that growth to continue scaling our tropical hardwoods business and positively impacting forest communities throughout Latin America.”

About Planting Empowerment
Founded in 2006, Planting Empowerment is a private, Washington, DC-based company with forestry operations in Panama. Planting Empowerment works in partnership with rural communities in Panama to grow tropical hardwoods and promote sustainable land use. As the first forestry company in Panama to work through a land lease model, Planting Empowerment has 25 hectares of trees under management on land owned by smallholders and indigenous communities.
More about Planting Empowerment at http://www.plantingempowerment.com


The ETFRN News provides an independent platform for the exchange of information and views on issues related tropical forest policies and management, published by the European Tropical Forest Research Network (ETFRN). It is a network of European organizations involved in (sub) tropical forest research. The Newsletter publishes on specific themes bringing together field level practice, scientific insights and international and national policy endeavors to enhance common understanding, exchange experiences and promote joint learning, and to bridge the gap between theory and practice.

About Tropenbos International
The mission of Tropenbos International (TBI) is to improve tropical forest management for the benefit of people, conservation and sustainable development. By making knowledge work for forests and people, TBI contributes to well-informed decision making for improved management and governance of tropical forests. TBI’s longstanding local presence and ability to bring together local, national and international partners make it a trusted partner in sustainable development. TBI is ETFRN’s coordinating member and national focal point in the Netherlands.

About The Forests Dialogue
The Forests Dialogue (TFD) is a platform and process for multi-stakeholder discussion and collaboration on the most pressing local and global issues facing forests and people. TFDs mission is to contribute to sustainable land and resource use, the conservation of forest and improved livelihoods by helping people build relationships to spur collaborative action.

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