World Bank internal report slams its forestry policy

Posted: January 29, 2013 by Rog Tallbloke in government, Incompetence, methodology, Politics, Robber Barons

From the Grauniad:

rain_forest_clearing_cameroonWorld Bank spending on forests fails to curb poverty, auditors claim

Report by World Bank’s own evaluators say its investments support logging and do little to help rural poor people

The World Bank‘s $4.1bn (£2.6bn) investments in forestry over the past 10 years have done little to reduce poverty, improve conservation, tackle climate change or benefit local communities in developing countries, a study by its own inspectors has found.

The 202-page report – a copy of which has been seen by the Guardian – was compiled by the Independent Evaluation Group (IEG), which consists of senior bank staff and outside consultants. The document says the bank’s financial support helped to protect 24m hectares (59m acres) of forest around the world and to classify 45m ha of forest as being on indigenous people’s land. But it says the bank mostly failed to address critical social and environmental issues.

The World Bank funded 345 major forestry projects in 75 countries in the decade to July 2011. The IEG panel, which visited many of the projects and interviewed hundreds of people, criticised the bank strongly for:

• Continuing to support industrial logging.

• Not involving communities in decision-making.

• Assuming that benefits would accrue to the poor rather than the rich and powerful.

• Paying little attention to rural poverty.

Read the rest here:
http://www.guardian.co.uk/global-development/2013/jan/29/world-bank-forests-poverty-auditors

Comments
  1. oldbrew says:

    As well as for-profit (selling carbon credits) forestry projects the World Bank is investing heavily in coal-fired power stations.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2010/apr/09/world-bank-criticised-over-power-station

  2. Brian H says:

    Observing the obvious can be very powerful.

  3. Berényi Péter says:

    “it says the bank mostly failed to address critical social and environmental issues”

    Of course it did. Since when it is the responsibility of a f.cking bank to address critical social and environmental issues? These a heavy weight political issues, who on earth wanted unelected bodies, intrinsically irresponsible in political matters, to decide or even address them?

    Whenever an entity claims responsibility beyond what is actually assigned to it, smell scam and a stinking one at that.

  4. Chris Lang says:

    The leaked IEG report about the World Bank, forestry and poverty can be downloaded on REDD-Monitor – http://bit.ly/YGavdK

  5. Chris Lang says:

    And World Bank management’s response to the IEG report can be downloaded here: http://bit.ly/TDhmlb

  6. tallbloke says:

    Thanks again Chris, I’ll download them and put them on my ebook for some light reading while I’m away this week. :)