Timber production in selectively logged tropical forests in South America

Michael Keller, Gregory P. Asner, Geoffrey Blate, John McGlocklin, Frank Merry, Marielos Peña-Claros, Johan Zweede

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


Selective logging is an extensive land-use practice in South America. Governments in the region have enacted policies to promote the establishment and maintenance of economically productive and sustainable forest industries. However, both biological and policy constraints threaten to limit the viability of the industry over the long term. Biological constraints, such as slow tree growth rates, can be overcome somewhat by management practices. In order to improve the likelihood of success for sustainable management, it is important to accept that forests change over time and that managed forests may be different than those of the present. Furthermore, education campaigns must convince decision makers and the public of the value of forest resources. We recommend that the forest sector be governed by simple, understandable regulations, based on sound science and consistent enforcement, and that governments work with, instead of against, industry. Problems of tropical forest management are far from being solved, so biological and social scientists should continue to generate new knowledge to promote effective management.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)213-216
Number of pages4
JournalFrontiers in Ecology and the Environment
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 2007
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Ecology


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