Register for XIV World Forestry Congress

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Reduced ‘Early Bird’ registration fees available for XIV World Forestry Congress in Durban in September have just been extended until 7 July.

Registration for the upcoming XIV World Forestry Congress is now open, with special reduced rates for ‘Early Bird’ registration having just been extended until 7 July. Take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to attend a World Forestry Congress in your own back yard.

The XIV World Forestry Congress is the biggest world forestry event, and is being held on African soil for the first time in its history. It is taking place in Durban from 7-11 September 2015.

Anybody can attend the Congress, which will help to define a vision for the future of forests and forestry. The theme of this year’s Congress is: ‘Forests and People – Investing in a Sustainable Future’.

‘Early Bird’ rates for South Africans registering before 30 June are R4 150 for the full five days – thereafter registration for South Africans and people from other eligible countries (see www.fao.org) is R5 300.

Partial attendance rates (1-3 days) and special rates for students are also available.

Register for the Congress HERE.

For more info about registration, email info@wfc2015.org.za.

Who should attend? Anybody who is involved in forests or forestry or who is a supporter of forests, including students, researchers, forestry professionals, workers or environmentalists, government employees – or just interested members of the public.

The Congress will be a key occasion to gather, share expertise and experience, and highlight the many benefits that forests provide.

Sessions on six sub-themes will highlight the role of forests in sustaining life, acting as buffers against environmental change and inspiring new technologies and products, as well as the need to integrate forests and other land uses and to improve forest monitoring and governance.

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Natural forest in Eastern Cape, South Africa. Natural forests play a critical role in producing clean water, storing carbon and nurturing biodiversity. Image © Chris Chapman

A dynamic Congress

Congress sessions will be more interactive than ever before, with interviews, debates, cutting-edge discussions with skilled moderators and innovative uses of social media to stimulate and engage a wide range of participants.

The Congress is gearing up to feature an impressive line-up of key speakers including ministers and high-level representation from the African Union Commission and the Collaborative Partnership on Forests as well as from the private sector.

The technical programme also boasts over 800 technical papers, posters and videos on a wide range of forestry topics, which have been submitted by people around the globe, and some 180 side events.

Paving the way to a new climate change agreement

The Congress will issue a series of key outcome messages geared towards strengthening the role of forests and forestry in sustainable development. These messages will underscore forestry’s contribution to the implementation of the new post-2015 agenda, and help pave the road to a new climate change agreement at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change meeting in Paris in December.

Focus on special events

A series of pre-Congress and special events will take place throughout the Congress and in the days immediately before the event. Here are just a few:

Pre-Congress event: Research Symposium on Underpinning sustainable tree plantations in Southern Africa (4 September 2015)

Come early for this one-day pre-Congress symposium, which will showcase the depth and breadth of forestry research across South Africa and highlight how research provides innovation, knowledge and technology to influence policy and strategic decision-making.

The symposium will also provide an excellent opportunity for South African and international participants to engage in dialogue, heighten collaboration and grow partnerships. Keynote and invited speakers will highlight research initiatives from across the country’s forest research community and the critical role of research in supporting decision-making at all levels across both public and private sectors.

Special event: International Forests and Water Dialogue (8-9 September 2015)

Forests use water, but they also provide water. As global demand for fresh water rises and water grows scarcer, we need to balance trade-offs between the ecosystem services provided by forests and trees and forest-induced changes in water availability.

Why forests and water?

•    One in six people do not have access to safe drinking water
•    80% of the global population live in areas where water reources are insecure
•    More than 1.3 of the world’s major cities rely on drinking water from forested areas
•    While demand for fresh water is rising, supply is growing scarcer

Join this special event to see the finalization and launch of a Five-year Forests and Water Action Plan, which calls for action in the areas of science, policy, economics and forest practices.

Special event: Wildlife Forum (9 September 2015)

Sign up for the Wildlife Forum to address challenges and opportunities in sustainable wildlife management! This special event will showcase the experiences of countries, organizations, indigenous peoples, local communities and the private sector in addressing poverty alleviation and livelihood security issues while safeguarding the world’s rich and diverse wildlife.

Organized by the Collaborative Partnership on Sustainable Wildlife Management, the Wildlife Forum will focus on:
•    community-based management and governance
•    wildlife crime and legality issues
•    human-wildlife conflict
•    bushmeat, food security and livelihoods

Everyone attending the Congress is welcome.

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