Implementing forest landscape restoration, a practitioner's guide
Forest landscape restoration (FLR) in a nutshell FLR was defined in 2000 by a group of 30 specialists as “a planned process that aims to regain ecological integrity and enhance human wellbeing in deforested or degraded landscapes”. It does not seek to recreate past ecosystems given the uncertainty concerning the “past”, the significantly altered conditions of the present as well as anticipated but uncertain future changes. However, it does seek to restore a forested ecosystem that is self-sustaining and that provides benefits both to people and to biodiversity. For this reason, the landscape scale is particularly important as it provides the opportunity to balance ecological, social, and economic priorities. The emphasis on the landscape also indicates that tree cover is not needed throughout the landscape, but rather the focus of FLR is on restoring functional forest ecosystems within landscapes so that forests can co-exist and subsist in a landscape mosaic together with other land uses. The restored forests within the forest landscape may also form mosaics of forest types emphasizing the various objectives and functions of the forests depending on the landscape, sites, and people living there. Some parts of the restored forests may serve protective functions for watersheds, soils, livestock or crops; other parts may be highly productive and efficiently produce high-quality timber, firewood or biomass while yet other parts may restore habitats for flora and fauna.