The sustainable production provides material to benefit local populations in terms of income generation, improvement in production, health, access to education, clean water and other environmental and social services. So said Luis Felipe Duchicela, regional director of the Rainforest Alliance (Rainforest Alliance), during his speech at the Environmental Forum III "Is it profitable environmental?", organized by the Council American companies (CEA).
Recognizing that 70% of the deforestation is due to conversion for agricultural use and that 50% of our land is for livestock, agriculture and forestry, during his presentation "Sustainable development vs. good business practices ", Duchicela insisted to the audience that the land use practices and business that must take action for environmental sustainability, social and economic life.
Rainforest Alliance representative reminded participants that some data show the global environmental crisis: 25% of world's mammals and 11% of birds are threatened with extinction, half of Forests have been cut away and each year more than 18 million hectares, 100 species every day.
In response to these significant figures, the Rainforest Alliance works with other organizations, such as the Sustainable Agriculture Network (RAS) of the Fundación Natura Colombia is creating global standards to help protect biodiversity and provide economic opportunities to people in need, said Duchicela.
Rainforest Allliance first established forest certification in 1989 with the launch of SmartWood, the first program of sustainable forestry. To integrate agriculture production, biodiversity conservation and human development, developed the program of sustainable agriculture. And in the tourist industry provide the necessary support to entrepreneurs and communities to improve their competitiveness through good practices also binding and stimulating the market to consume sustainable products and services, said the lecturer.
Reflecting on the potential for sustainable production, Luis Felipe Duchicela recalled some achievements within the program of sustainable agriculture. For example, over 200 thousand hectares of coffee farms have significantly reduced the use of herbicides and pesticides, recycling, and invested in providing their employees better training, housing, health benefits and education. Generating profits to more than one million people in 14 countries with sales of one billion dollars.
According to Duchicela, increasingly global markets require implementing good environmental practices and social, as a differentiating factor when purchasing products or services by making these practices, an integral and strategic part of business management today. Hence the recommendation to formulate and implement policies for planning and assessment frameworks for sustainable development that will enable enterprises to work in sustainability.
Also suggested measures to ensure that investments in these sectors continue to practice sustainable and accessible financial and technical assistance for small and medium enterprises. A criterion, best practices and certification should be viewed as tools key to responsible development of productive activities as the Rainforest Alliance seal is a guarantee to consumers that the products meet strict sustainability criteria.