The Forestry Development Authority (FDA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),
and the Ministry of Labor (MoL) embarked on a weeklong joint inspection exercise in Yarwin Mehnsonner Community Forest. The Community Forest Management Area (CFMA) is located in Nimba County and operated by the West Water Group Liberia Incorporated (WWG). The inspection which began April 25 and ended April 30, 2022 had the objective of assessing WWG operations in line with the performance requirements of the Code of Forest Harvesting Practices (CFHP).
The CFHP was developed by FDA in 2007 and revised in 2017 to give forest operators practical approaches to all facets of logging operations. The CFHP contains performance requirements that are of international standards and tilted towards Reduced Impact Logging – and on the overall, Sustainable Forest Management. Its key performance areas are Safety and Health, Productivity, Environment, Quality, and Social Responsibility (SPEQS). It is incumbent upon all forest operators/logging companies to adhere to the standards and requirements in the CFHP. The development of the CFHP is in pursuance to the National Forest Management Strategy of Liberia which mandates FDA to ensure sustainable management of the Republic’s forest land.
The joint inspections made use of the CFHP, its derivative inspection checklist customized per the inspecting institutions, and the Non-Compliance Report (NCR). The CFHP and the inspection checklists are used in gathering field facts to determine compliance status of an operator, while the NCR is used to develop and detail non-conformities observed in the field for proper and standardized reporting. The Ministry of Labor could not participate in the exercise as the lone trained inspector for Region-3 was hospitalized at the commencement of the inspections.
The exercise was made possible by the VPA Support Unit-2 program that made all resources available for the conduct of the inspections. The possibility is under its project output area 2.2 “Assistance to FDA inspections”.
The photos below show the teams before the inspection and getting an overview checking maps and forest management plan.
Written by James Kollie