Skip to content

Language switcher

Trade and Other Underlying Causes of Forest Loss

Deforestation and forest degradation can be successfully tackled, and forest conservation and restoration enhanced, by tackling the real underlying causes of forest loss. These include reducing demand for wood and land, and supporting cultural values, Indigenous territories, and community conserved areas.

GFC aims:

  • To raise public awareness on the importance of addressing the underlying causes of deforestation and forest degradation
  • To build capacity amongst all relevant actors in analyzing and addressing the underlying causes of deforestation and forest degradation
  • To develop and implement, in an open and participatory manner, solution-oriented approaches towards addressing the underlying causes of deforestation and forest degradation.


International trade in commodities like soy, beef, wood and palm oil is a major driver of forest loss, land grabbing and climate change, as documented by the Global Forest Coalition, numerous other organisations and confirmed by several scientific reports. The free trade agreements that fuel the trade in these big drivers of deforestation are a major threat to forests, ecosystems, climate change and communities. We work to halt and reverse these trade agreements, and remove agriculture and forests from the control of the World Trade Organization (WTO). We do this through active advocacy strategies and by mobilising opposition amongst our member groups, and our social movement allies. We focus on the ways in which trade and investment rules drive the expansion of international soy, beef, wood and palm oil markets, and we promote just and feasible alternatives that build towards an Economy for Life, for the health of the planet and its peoples.

For resources on this campaign please see here.

A Pathetic REDD Package

On 12 November 2013, the Global Forest Coalition made the following intervention during the negotiations in Warsaw on methodologies to Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation and enhance forest carbon stocks (REDD+): “The Global Forest Coalition, a worldwide coalition of 54 NGOs and Indigenous peoples’ organizations promoting rights-based forest policies shares the concerns of our NGO and IPO colleagues about the extremely weak draft decisions that have been developed in the areas of drivers of forest loss and safeguards. …

Read in full ›