Book Launch "Sustainable Management of Tropical Rainforests - The CELOS Management System"

Book Launch "Sustainable Management of Tropical Rainforests - The CELOS Management System"

Suriname - 24 November, 2011

On 20 January 2012 a book with contributions from 25 authors on the experiences of the CELOS Management System will be launched as result of a Tropenbos Suriname project in collaboration with the Centre for Agricultural Research in Suriname (CELOS) and Wageningen University and Research centre (WUR), and co-funding of WWF-Guianas.

The main sponsor of the book launch is the Embassy of the Royal Kingdom of the Netherlands. The book tells in brief the history of forestry in Suriname and some other tropical countries. It reveals how research on forest management in Suriname led to the development of a potentially sustainable forest management system, integrating a harvesting and a silvicultural system. And it documents the long-term effects of applying this system as apparent from a great deal of research in experimental forest stands of CELOS in Suriname. This information holds the evidence to determine the potential of the CELOS Management System to serve as a model for other systems of sustainable management of tropical forests in Suriname and beyond, particularly in other Latin American countries in the region with similar forests.

The CELOS Management System was developed in the sixties and seventies by researchers from the Suriname Forest Service and the Agricultural University of Wageningen (The Netherlands; nowadays WUR) as a form of sustainable forest management in which natural regeneration of commercial timber trees was an important feature. Experiments were set up at the sites of CELOS at Mapane and Kabo in the district of Para. After the independence of Suriname in 1975, an agreement was set up between WUR and the then University of Suriname (nowadays Anton de Kom University of Suriname) to further develop a forest management system for the sustainable production of timber.

Scientists and students were involved in the experiments to study various aspects of the natural and treated forests. Many inventories, measurements, monitoring censuses and a great deal of supplementary research were done, and a wealth of important data was gathered. In 1983 political developments caused the interruption of these research activities for a considerable number of years. In the second half of the nineties, although with less intensity, activities were resumed.
The results of the research projects have been reported in four PhD dissertations, many MSc theses, a number of publications in professional journals and books, and many internal reports. However, they were never integrated in a comprehensive publication evaluating the results so far obtained.

In recent decades the interest in and importance of reduced impact logging and sustainable forest management strongly increased, and the interest in the CMS also grew, in Suriname and in other Latin American countries. As the documentation on this system was so widely scattered, it has proved difficult to readily gather an adequate account of the usefulness of the system. There was a clear need for a synthesis, bringing together a description of the CMS principles, its underlying yield model, its associated silvicultural treatments, as well as a balanced assessment of its long-term effects on the silvicultural and ecological dynamics and biological value of the managed forests, as apparent from the various studies carried out in the experimental plots.

The book “Sustainable Management of Tropical Rainforests: The CELOS Management System” combines the theoretical basis of the system, and the practical results as apparent from extensive and long-term experimental work in forest plots. The information will be readily available for a large readership, for those working in tropical forestry and forest policy, as well as for those with just a general interest in tropical forests. This ecological, silvicultural and practical knowledge allows evaluation of the CMS in terms of present concepts and policies on tropical forests and tropical forestry, including the important developments in these fields since the Conference of Rio de Janeiro (1992), the introduction of forest certification standards and the developments around REDD(+). The book will be available after its launch in January 2012.