Understanding ‘Deforestation-Free’: Ways Forward to End Deforestation

Event time: 
8 September 2015
World Forestry Congress, Durban, ZA

Understanding ‘Deforestation-Free’: Ways Forward to End Deforestation
World Forestry Congress XIV – Durban, South Africa
Tuesday 8 September 2015 from 18:15 to 19:30


The past few years have seen a flurry of commitments made by companies and governments to eradicate deforestation from supply chains, investments, and jurisdictions. ‘Deforestation-free’ is rapidly becoming a norm in the commodities space, achieving its highest level of recognition with the 2014 New York Declaration on Forests, in which 35 governments, 34 companies, 16 indigenous peoples groups, and 45 NGOs and civil society organizations pledged to “do [their] part to … end natural forest loss by 2030.” This approach to forest conservation raises critical questions concerning issues such as the meaning of “forest,” the relationships between corporate and governmental commitments, implications for marginalized populations, and means of monitoring and verifying claims.

The co-sponsors of this event, TFD, WWF and WBCSD are in the midst of leading a series of dialogues in which it is convening stakeholders from across the forest sector to address these issues and generate ways forward for deforestation-free policies. Following TFD’s successful dialogue on Understanding Deforestation Free in Indonesia in May 2015, TFD is developing a future set of dialogues to be held in Africa and South America on Understanding Deforestation Free in these local contexts. To learn more about TFD’s Understanding Deforestation Free dialogues, click here.

Event Description

This event will provide a multi-stakeholder panel of experts who have participated in TFDs dialogues and are leading related initiatives. The panel will be broadly representative of the multiple stakeholders and viewpoints in the dialogues, featuring representatives from a producer company, a local or social NGO, and from the co-sponsoring organizations. After giving a brief scene setting/overview presentation, Rod Taylor (WWF) will moderate a discussion with the panel by first posing key questions that have emerged from the dialogues. Each panelist will have 2-3 minutes to respond to a question in order to highlight some of the differences of opinion that have arisen during the dialogues, and then the panel will continue in a back-and-forth, “chat show” type discussion for no more than 30 minutes total. Rod will then invite the audience to contribute their ideas and questions, thereby engaging individuals who have not had the opportunity to participate in the dialogues. After no more than 25 minutes of audience-generated comments and discussion, the moderator will ask each panelist for their concluding thoughts to close the event.


  • Explore commonly held views on what is meant by ‘deforestation-free’
  • Highlight risks and opportunities associated with implementing deforestation-free policies
  • Capture insights on key challenges, and potential solutions, to ensure deforestation-free initiatives deliver positive social and environmental outcomes
  • Illustrate how findings from the Indonesia field dialogue can inform the design and implementation of deforestation-free commitments elsewhere


Room 22ABCG


18:15 – 18:25 - Introductory Presentation – Rodney Taylor, WWF
18:25 – 18:55 - Panel Discussion. ModeratorRodney Taylor, WWF. ParticipantsRashyid Redza Anwarudin (Sime Darby Berhad), Milagre Nuvunga (Micaia Foundation, TBC), Uta Jungermann (WBCSD), Gary Dunning (TFD), Chip Barber (WRI)
18:55 – 19:20 PM - Discussion and Q&A with Audience. ModeratorRodney Taylor, WWF
19:20 PM – 19:30 PM - Closing remarks

Rodney Taylor 
– Director, Forests, WWF International

Rashyid Redza Anwarudin 
– Vice President, Group Sustainability and Quality Management, SimeDarby
Chip Barber – Director, Forest Legality Alliance And Government Relations, Forests Program, WRI
Gary Dunning – Executive Director, The Forests Dialogue
Uta Jungermann – Manager, Forest Solutions Group, WBCSD
Milagre Nuvunga – Executive Director, MICAIA Foundation 

Convening Organizations
The Forests Dialogue
- The Forests Dialogue (TFD) was created in 1998 to provide international leaders in the forest sector with an ongoing, multi-stakeholder dialogue (MSD) platform and process focused on developing mutual trust, a shared understanding, and collaborative solutions to challenges in achieving sustainable forest management and forest conservation around the world.

Following TFD’s successful dialogue on Understanding Deforestation Free in Indonesia in May 2015, TFD is developing a future set of dialogues to be held in Africa and South America on Understanding Deforestation Free in these local contexts. To learn more about TFD’s Understanding Deforestation Free dialogues, click here:


WWF Logo

WWF – WWF’s mission is to stop the degradation of the planet’s natural environment and to build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature, by conserving the world’s biological diversity, ensuring that the use of renewable natural resources is sustainable, and promoting the reduction of pollution and wasteful consumption.

WWF combines cutting edge science, new perspectives from partners and our decades of on-the-ground experience to help tackle some of the biggest challenges and stickiest issues in conservation. On forests, WWF takes a solutions-oriented, integrated and local to global approach that seeks synergies with relevant stakeholders to influence drivers of deforestation and degradation. WWF works in close cooperation and coordination with other stakeholders to trigger new thinking and innovative solutions to tackle the vast resource challenges facing a world of over seven billion people.  WWF advocates Zero Net Deforestation and Forest Degradation (ZNDD) by 2020 as a global target that reflects the scale and urgency with which threats to the world’s forests and climate need to be tackled.


WBCSD – WBCSD’s Forest Solutions Group brings together about 35% of global forest, paper and packaging sales. It is a global platform for strategic collaboration among value chain partners to bring more of the world’s forests under sustainable management and expand markets for responsible forest products. The FSG is actively engaged with The Forests Dialogue, in particular the UDF initiative, to better understand the effects of deforestation-free commitments on the forest products value chain. In addition, WBCSD seeks to support the cross-sector approach needed to advance deforestation-free commitments across various supply chains and realize them on the ground.  You can learn more about FSG here: