TH!NK Namibia News

Symposium: The Role of Forests in Sustainable Development


On 16 May 2023, the Namibia Sustainable Forest Management (NSFM) Project  held a Symposium on ‘The Role of Forests in Sustainable Development’ at Protea Hotel Furstenhof, Windhoek. The Symposium is the second of a series of conferences of the NSFM-Project and was aimed at looking at the future of Namibia’s forest in terms of sustainable forest management as the key to unlocking its potential. The Symposium was attended by different forestry stakeholders from the public and private sector, NGOs, and various institutions as it aimed at sharing knowledge and lessons to discuss the role of forests in sustainable development.

The Symposium was graced by the presence of the Ambassador of the Delegation of the European Union to Namibia, H.E. Sinikka Antila, who did the Welcoming Remarks. She informed the participants on the immense role done by the NSFM-Project implemented by HSF in collaboration with DRFN. The Introduction, Objectives, and Outputs speech was done by the Resident Representative of the Hanns Seidel Foundation (HSF) Namibia, Dr Clemens von Doderer. Mr Johnson Ndokosho, the Director of Forestry from the Ministry of Environment, Forestry, and Tourism (MEFT), gave the Keynote Speech on behalf of  Minister Hon. Pohamba Shifeta. Mr Ndokosho gave his appreciation to the NSFM-Project for yet another event that has great contribution to safeguard Namibia's natural resources.

The Symposium was moderated by Ms Doufi Namalambo. Various presentations were provided by speakers from different organisations such as the FAO, GIZ, IUM, NUST and MEFT.

The fist presentation was given by Ms Marlyn Mbapaha from the Food and Agriculture Organization Namibia (FAO). She talked about theContribution of DSL-IP Namibia Child Project to Sustainable Forest Management in the Mopane-Miombo belt of Northern Namibia’. She emphasised the integration landscape management to reduce, reverse, and avoid further degradation and support the sustainable use of natural resources in the Mopane-Miombo belt of Northern Namibia, and stressed out its great opportunities. Dr Jonathan Kamwi from the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST)  gave the second presentation. He talked on ‘The Role of Forestry in Sustainable Development’. He stressed out the resilient of forest landscapes and the consideration of cost benefit analysis for local communities to benefit. The participants actively engaged in the presentations by giving contributions and concerns over the usage of Namibia’s natural resources.

Prof. Dr Eugene Chigbu, also from NUST, Department of Land and Spatial Sciences, presented on 'The Role of Forestland in Mitigating Climate Change' with a special focus on connecting forest land and climate change. Ms Albertina Fillipus from the International University of Management (IUM), Centre for Environmental Studies, gave her presentation on Greening the Economy for Sustainable Development’. She noted that good governance principles that are guided by integrated, accountable and resilient institutions are major contributors to the economic development of the country.

Mr Stefan Glaser  and Mr Jan Theis from the Gesellschaft fur internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) gave the final presentation of that event. Their presentation titled 'Can Biochar be the Black Glod of Namibia?' (part 1, part 2, part 3).

Dr Martin Schneider, Director of DRFN, gave the Closing Remarks and Vote of Thanks. He urged the participants to continue attending events to gain more knowledge and skills from experts and players within the forest sector.

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