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Environmental Protection Of Native Forests Minim Environmental Protection Budgets - Establishment - Full Standard Text


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image inicio sitio infoleg MInisterio de Justicia y Derechos Humanos
MINIMOS BUDGETS OF ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION OF NATIVE BOSQUES Law 26.331 Please outline the minimum environmental protection budgets for the enrichment, restoration, conservation, use and sustainable management of native forests. Sanctioned: November 28, 2007 Cast: December 19, 2007

The Senate and Chamber of Deputies

of the Argentine Nation gathered in Congress,


forcefully sanctioned





Chapter 1

General provisions

ARTICLE 1 This Act establishes the minimum environmental protection budgets for the enrichment, restoration, conservation, use and sustainable management of native forests and the environmental services they provide to society. It also establishes a system of promotion and criteria for the distribution of funds by the environmental services provided by native forests. ARTICLE 2 For the purposes of this law, consider native forests to the natural forest ecosystems predominantly composed of mature native arboreal species, with various species of associated flora and fauna, in conjunction with the environment surrounding them .soil, subsoil, atmosphere, climate, water resources,, forming an interdependent plot with their own characteristics and multiple functions, which in their natural state gives the system a dynamic condition of different environmental resources.

Both native forests of primary origin, where man did not intervene, and those of secondary origin formed after a detachment, as well as those resulting from a voluntary recomposition or restoration, are included in the definition.

All exploitations carried out in areas less than TEN (10) hectares owned by indigenous communities or small producers are excluded from the application of this law.

Article 3 The objectives of this Act are:

(a) Promote conservation through the Territorial Management of Native Forests and the regulation of the expansion of the agricultural border and of any other change in land use;

(b) Implement the necessary measures to regulate and control the decrease in the area of existing native forests, tending to achieve a lasting surface in time;

(c) Improve and maintain ecological and cultural processes in native forests that benefit society;

(d) Ensuring the precautionary and preventive principles, maintaining native forests whose environmental benefits or the environmental damage generated by their absence, cannot yet be demonstrated by existing techniques;

(e) Promote enrichment, conservation, restoration and sustainable management of native forests.

ARTICLE 4 For the purposes of this Act, it is understood that:

- Territorial Management of Native Forests: To the norm that based on the environmental sustainability criteria set out in the Annex to this law territorially zonifies the area of native forests existing in each jurisdiction according to the different conservation categories.

- Sustainable Management: To the organization, administration and use of native forests in form and intensity that allows to maintain their biodiversity, productivity, vitality, potentiality and regeneration capacity, to serve, now and in the future, the relevant ecological, economic and social functions in the local and national spheres, without damaging other ecosystems, keeping the Environmental Services that lend to society.

- Sustainable Management Plan for Native Forests: To the document that synthesizes the organization, means and resources, in time and space, of the sustainable use of forest, wood and non-timber resources, in a native forest or group of native forests, for which it must include a detailed description of the forest land in its ecological, legal, social and economic aspects and, in particular, a forest inventory with a first level of detail that allows for the estimation of

- Plan of Use of Soil: To the document that describes the object of the exploitation and specifies the organization and means to use to guarantee sustainability, including extraction and removal.

- Disclaimer: Any anthropogenic action that causes the "native forest" to lose its character as such, determining its conversion to other soil uses such as, among others: agriculture, livestock, afforestation, the construction of dams or the development of urbanized areas.

ARTICLE 5o Consider Environmental Services to the tangible and intangible benefits generated by the ecosystems of the native forest, necessary for the concert and survival of the natural and biological system as a whole, and to improve and ensure the quality of life of the inhabitants of the Nation benefited by the native forests.

Among others, the main environmental services that native forests provide to society are:

- Water regulation;

- Conservation of biodiversity;

- Conservation of soil and water quality;

- Greenhouse gas emissions;

- Contribution to the diversification and beauty of the landscape;

- Defense of cultural identity.

Chapter 2

Territorial Planning of Native Forests

ARTICLE 6 Within a maximum period of UN (1) year from the sanction of this law, through a participatory process, each jurisdiction shall carry out the Native Forests Ordinance existing in its territory according to the sustainability criteria set out in the Annex to this Law, establishing the different conservation categories according to the environmental value of the different units of native forest and the environmental services provided by them.

The National Implementation Authority shall provide, at the request of the implementing authorities of each jurisdiction, the technical, economic and financial assistance necessary to carry out the Native Forests Ordinance in its jurisdictions.

Each jurisdiction shall periodically carry out and update the Native Forests Ordinance, existing in its territory.

ARTICLE 7 Once the deadline set out in the previous article has been met, jurisdictions that have not carried out their Territorial Native Forest Management may not authorize dismantling or any other use and use of native forests. ARTICLE 8 During the course of the time between the sanction of this law and the realization of the Territorial Order of Native Forests, no dismantling may be authorized. Article 9 The conservation categories of native forests are as follows:

- Category I (red): sectors of very high conservation value that should not be transformed. It will include areas that, due to their reservations locations, their connectivity value, the presence of outstanding biological values and/or the protection of basins that they exercise, immerse their persistence as a forest in perpetuity, although these sectors may be habitats of indigenous communities and be subject to scientific research.

- Category II (yellow): medium-value conservation sectors, which may be degraded but which, in the opinion of the jurisdictional enforcement authority with the implementation of restoration activities, may have a high conservation value and may be subject to the following uses: sustainable use, tourism, collection and scientific research.

- Category III (green): sectors of low conservation value that can be partially or in full, even if within the criteria of this law.

Chapter 3

Implementation authorities

ARTICLE 10. The Authority of Application will be the agency that the Nation, the provinces and the city of Buenos Aires determine to act within each jurisdiction. ARTICLE 11. The National Environment and Sustainable Development Secretariat of the Nation or the highest-ranking agency with environmental competence will be the Implementing Authority within national jurisdiction.

Chapter 4

National Forest Protection Programme


ARTICLE 12. Consider the National Programme for the Protection of Native Forests, which will be implemented by the National Implementation Authority, and will have the following objectives:

(a) Promote, within the framework of the Land Management of Native Forests, the sustainable management of native forests Categories II and III, through the establishment of sustainable management criteria and indicators adjusted to each environment and jurisdiction;

(b) Encouraging the necessary measures to ensure that the use of native forests is sustainable, considering indigenous communities that inhabit or depend on them, seeking to minimize negative environmental impacts;

(c) Promote the creation and maintenance of adequate and functional forest reserves by each eco-region of the national territory in order to avoid adverse ecological effects and loss of strategic environmental services. The mentioned forest reserves must be emerging from the Land Management Process of the Native Forests in each eco-region and may include areas surrounding the native forests necessary for their preservation;

(d) Promote plans for reforestation and ecological restoration of degraded native forests;

(e) Keep up-to-date information on the area covered by native forests and their conservation status;

(f) To provide the Implementing Authorities of the various jurisdictions with the technical capabilities to formulate, monitor, monitor and evaluate the Sustainable Management Plans of the Native Forests existing in their territory, in accordance with the sustainability criteria set out in the Annex. This assistance will be aimed at improving the capacity of technical and auxiliary personnel, improving field and cabinet equipment and access to new control and monitoring technologies, promoting cooperation and standardization of information among equivalent institutions in the different jurisdictions between themselves and the National Implementation Authority.

(g) Promote the implementation of conservation, restoration, development and management measures as appropriate.

Chapter 5

Authorizations of Desmonte or of Use


ARTICLE 13. Any detachment or sustainable management of native forests will require authorization from the Applying Authority of the corresponding jurisdiction. ARTICLE 14. Native forests classified in categories I (red) and II (yellow) may not be authorized. ARTICLE 15. Open-air burning of wastes derived from sustainable dismantling or exploitation of native forests is prohibited. ARTICLE 16. Individuals or legal entities, public or private, seeking authorization for the sustainable management of native forests classified in categories II and III, shall subject their activity to a Sustainable Management Plan for Native Forests that must meet the minimum conditions of persistence, sustained production and maintenance of the environmental services that such native forests provide to society. ARTICLE 17. Individuals or legal entities, public or private, who request authorization to carry out dismantlings of native forests of category III, shall subject their activity to a Plan of Use of Soil Change, which shall contemplate minimum conditions of sustained production in the short, medium and long term and the use of available technologies that allow the efficient performance of the activity that is proposed to be developed. ARTICLE 18. The Sustainable Management Plans for Native Forests and Plans for the Use of Soil Change should be developed in accordance with the regulations established by the Authority for the Application of the corresponding jurisdiction for each region and area, which should define the general management and development standards.

The plans will require the assessment and approval of the Authority for the Application of the jurisdiction prior to its implementation and shall be subscribed by the holders of the activity and endorsed by an accredited professional, registered in the registry that will be carried to the effect in the form and with the scopes established by the Authority of Implementation.

ARTICLE 19. Any project on the detachment or sustainable management of native forests should recognize and respect the rights of indigenous communities originating in the country that traditionally occupy these lands. ARTICLE 20. In the event of verification of present or future environmental damage that relates to causality with the falseness or omission of the data contained in the Sustainable Management Plans of Native Forests and in the Plans of Use Change of Soil, the natural or legal persons who have subscribed the aforementioned studies will be jointly responsible to the holders of the authorization. ARTICLE 21. In the case of non-sustainable activities carried out by small farmers and/or peasant communities related to native forests, the Applying Authority of the appropriate jurisdiction shall implement technical and financial assistance programmes to promote the sustainability of such activities.

Chapter 6

Environmental Impact Assessment.

ARTICLE 22. In order to grant the authorization of detachment or sustainable use, the authority of application of each jurisdiction must submit the request for authorization to an environmental impact assessment procedure.

Environmental impact assessment will be mandatory for detachment. For sustainable management it will be when it has the potential to cause significant environmental impacts, understanding as such those that could generate or present at least one of the following effects, characteristics or circumstances:

(a) Significant adverse effects on the quantity and quality of renewable natural resources, including soil, water and air;

(b) Resettlement of human communities, or significant alterations in the life systems and customs of human groups;

(c) Near-population location, resources and protected areas likely to be affected, as well as the environmental value of the territory in which the project or activity is to be implemented;

(d) Significant alteration, in terms of magnitude or duration, of the landscape or tourist value of an area;

(e) Alteration of monuments, sites with anthropological, archaeological, historical and, in general, those belonging to the cultural heritage.

ARTICLE 23. In the environmental impact assessment procedure, the enforcement authority of each jurisdiction shall:

(a) Report to the National Implementation Authority;

(b) Emitting the Declaration of Environmental Impact;

(c) Adopt sustainable management plans for native forests;

(d) Ensure compliance with articles 11, 12 and 13 of Act No. 25,675 GeneralEnvironmental Law General and the provisions of this Act.

ARTICLE 24. The Environmental Impact Survey (EIA) shall contain, at least and without prejudice to the supplementary requirements established by each jurisdiction, the following data and information:

(a) Individualization of those responsible for the project and the Environmental Impact Study;

(b) Description of the proposed project to carry out with special mention of: objectives, location, components, technology, raw materials and inputs, energy source and consumption, waste, products, stages, employment generation, economic benefits (discriminating private, public and social groups benefited), numbers of direct and indirect beneficiaries;

(c) Sustainable management plan for native forests, including proposals to prevent and mitigate adverse environmental impacts and optimize positive impacts, environmental restoration actions and compensation mechanisms, monitoring measures, monitoring of detected environmental impacts and emergency response;

(d) In the case of detachment operations, the spatial relationship between areas of detachment and areas corresponding to surrounding forest masses should be analysed in order to ensure consistency with the order provided for in Article 6;

(e) Description of the environment in which the project will develop: definition of the area of influence, status of the natural and antropic environment, with special reference to the updated situation of indigenous peoples, originaries or peasant communities that inhabit the area, the physical, biological, social, economic and cultural components; their dynamics and interactions; environmental problems and property values. Legal and institutional framework;

(f) Prognosis of how the physical, economic and social environment will evolve if the proposed project is not implemented;

(g) Alternative analysis: description and comparative evaluation of alternative localization, technology and operation projects, and their respective environmental and social effects. Detailed description and evaluation of the selected alternative;

(h) Significant environmental impacts: identification, characterization and evaluation of the foreseeable, positive and negative, direct and indirect, singular and cumulative, short-, medium- and long-term effects, stating the uncertainties associated with the forecasts and considering all stages of the project cycle;

(i) Synthesis paper, written in easily understandable terms, containing in summary form the findings and recommended actions.

ARTICLE 25. The enforcement authority of each jurisdiction, once reviewed by the Environmental Impact Survey and the results of public hearings or consultations, shall issue an Environmental Impact Statement through which it shall:

(a) Approving or denying the environmental impact study of the project;

(b) Report to the National Implementation Authority.

Chapter 7

Hearing and Public Consultation

ARTICLE 26. For native forest detachment projects, the enforcement authority of each jurisdiction shall ensure strict compliance with articles 19, 20 and 21 of Law 25,675 GeneralEnvironment Law General, prior to the issuance of authorizations for such activities.

In all cases, the provisions of articles 16, 17 and 18 of Act No. 25,675 GeneralLaw General del Ambiente General should be implemented, and in particular the necessary measures should be taken to ensure access to information from indigenous peoples, indigenous peoples, peasant communities and other related communities, on the authorizations granted for dismantlings, under Act No. 25,831.

Chapter 8

National Register of Infractors

ARTICLE 27. Any natural or legal person, public or private, who has been infringed on national or provincial regimes or laws, whether forest or environmental, insofar as he does not comply with the sanctions imposed, shall not obtain authorization of detachment or sustainable use.

To that end, consider the National Register of Infractors, which will be administered by the National Implementation Authority. The Applying Authorities of the various jurisdictions shall transmit information on violators of their jurisdiction and verify their inclusion in the national registry, which shall be of public access throughout the national territory.

Chapter 9


ARTICLE 28. It is up to the Applicable Authorities of each jurisdiction to monitor the continuing compliance of this Law, and the conditions on which the authorizations for the demonization or sustainable management of native forests were granted.

Chapter 10


ARTICLE 29. Sanctions for non-compliance with this law and the regulations that are determined accordingly, without prejudice to any other responsibilities that may correspond, shall be those that are fixed in each of the jurisdictions in accordance with their respective police power, which may not be less than those set out here.

The jurisdictions that do not have a sanctions regime shall supplement the following sanctions that fall within national jurisdiction:

(a) Appreciation;

(b) Fine between TRESCIENTOS (300) and EZ MIL (10.000) basic salaries of the initial category of the national civil service. The production of these fines will be affected to the appropriate environmental protection area;

(c) Suspension or revocation of authorizations.

These penalties shall be applicable in the jurisdiction where the offence was committed and shall be governed by the appropriate administrative procedure rules, ensuring due legal process, and shall be graduated according to the nature of the offence.

Chapter 11

National Fund for Enrichment and

Forest Conservation


ARTICLE 30. Consider the National Fund for the Enrichment and Conservation of Native Forests, in order to compensate the jurisdictions conserving native forests for the environmental services they provide. ARTICLE 31. The Fund will consist of:

(a) Budget items allocated to it annually in order to comply with this Act, which may not be less than 0.3 per cent of the national budget;

(b) 2 per cent (2 per cent) of the total retentions to exports of primary and secondary products from agriculture, livestock and forest sector, corresponding to the previous year of the reporting period;

(c) Loans and/or subsidies specifically granted by National and International Agencies;

(d) Donations and legacies;

(e) Any other contribution to the implementation of programmes by the Fund;

(f) The sale of publications or other services related to the forest sector;

(g) Unused resources from previous years.

ARTICLE 32. The National Fund for the Conservation of Native Forests will be distributed annually among the jurisdictions that have developed and approved by provincial law its Native Forest Management.

The National Implementation Authority, together with the implementing authorities of each of the jurisdictions that have declared to have native forests in their territory, shall determine annually the amounts appropriate to be paid, taking into consideration for this determination:

(a) The percentage of native forest area declared by each jurisdiction;

(b) The relationship in each provincial territory between its total area and that of its native forests;

(c) The categories of conservation declared, corresponding to a higher amount per hectare to category I than to category II.

ARTICLE 33. The Implementing Authorities of each Jurisdiction shall refer to the National Authority of Application its Land Management of Native Forests and the documentation that the regulation determines for the accreditation of their native forests and classification categories. ARTICLE 34. The National Implementation Authority, for the purpose of providing benefits for environmental services, may periodically verify the maintenance of native forest surfaces and conservation categories declared by the respective jurisdictions. ARTICLE 35. . Fund implementation. The jurisdictions shall apply the Fund ' s resources as follows:

(a) Seventy per cent to compensate landholders with native, public or private forests, according to their conservation categories. The benefit shall consist of a non-refundable contribution, to be paid per hectare and per year, in accordance with the categorization of native forests, generating the obligation in the holders to carry out and maintain updated a Plan for the Management and Conservation of Native Forests that must be approved in each case by the Authority for the Application of the respective jurisdiction. The benefit will be renewable annually without periods.

(b) 30% to the Authority of Application of each Jurisdiction, which will assign it to:

1. Develop and maintain a network of monitoring and information systems of their native forests;

2. The implementation of technical and financial assistance programmes to promote the sustainability of non-sustainable activities developed by small producers and/or indigenous and/or peasant communities.

ARTICLE 36. The National Fund for the Conservation of Native Forests will be administered by the National Implementation Authority together with the implementing authorities referred to in article 32, who will dictate the regulations for that purpose. The National Authority shall provide the necessary means to carry out comprehensive controls related to the control and audit by the General Audit of the Nation and the General Assembly of the Nation, in accordance with Law 24.156. ARTICLE 37. The Fund ' s administration will report annually on the destination of funds transferred during the previous year, detailing the amounts by provinces and forest categories, which will be published in full on the National Implementation Authority website. ARTICLE 38. The jurisdictions that have received inputs from the National Fund for the Conservation of Native Forests shall, on an annual basis, submit to the National Authority for Implementation a report detailing the use and destination of funds received. The National Implementation Authority shall implement the mechanisms for the purpose of controlling the use and destination of funds granted and the fulfilment of the requirements and conditions by the creditors of the benefits. ARTICLE 39. The articles of this chapter make the spirit and unity of this law, in the terms of article 80 of the National Constitution.

Chapter 12

Supplementary provisions

ARTICLE 40. In cases of native forests that have been affected by fires or other natural or antropic events that have degraded them, it is up to the authority to apply the respective jurisdiction to perform tasks for their recovery and restoration, keeping the classification category that has been defined in the territorial order. ARTICLE 41. The Applying Authorities of each jurisdiction shall determine the time limit for the pre-existing use of native or dismantling forests in categorized areas I and II to adapt their activities to the provisions of this Act. ARTICLE 42. The Executive Power shall regulate this Act and constitute the Fund referred to in Article 30 and the following within a maximum period of NOVTA (90) days after its promulgation. ARTICLE 43. The Annex is an integral part of this Law. ARTICLE 44. Contact the Executive.



DANIEL O. SCIOLI. . ALBERTO E. BALESTRINI. . Enrique Hidalgo. . Juan H. Estrada.


Criteria of environmental sustainability for the

territorial system

of native forests:

The zoning criteria are not independent from each other, so a weighted analysis of them will allow an estimate of the conservation value of a given sector.

1. Surface: is the minimum habitat size available to ensure the survival of plant and animal communities. This is especially important for large species of carnivores and herbivores.

2. Linking with other natural communities: Determining the link between a forest patch and other natural communities in order to preserve full ecological gradients. This criterion is important because many species of birds and mammals use different ecosystems at different times of the year in search of adequate food resources.

3. Linking with existing protected areas and regional integration: The location of patches of forests close to or linked to protected areas of national or provincial jurisdiction as well as to Natural Monuments, increases their conservation value, are located within or near the provincial territory. In addition, an important factor is the complementarity of landscape units and regional integration considered in relation to the environment present in the existing protected areas and the maintenance of important ecological corridors that link to the protected areas.

4. Existence of outstanding biological values: they are elements of natural systems characterized by being rare or rare, giving the site a high conservation value.

5. Eco-region connectivity: the forest and riparian corridors guarantee the connectivity between eco-regions allowing the displacement of certain species.

6. State of conservation: the determination of the state of conservation of a patch implies an analysis of the use to which it was subjected in the past and of the consequences of that use for the communities that inhabit it. Thus, forest activity, the transformation of the forest for agriculture or for livestock activities, hunting and riots such as fire, as well as the intensity of these activities, influence the conservation value of a sector, affecting the diversity of the animal and plant communities in question. Diversity refers to the number of species of a community and the relative abundance of them. The conservation status of a unit should be evaluated in the context of the conservation value of the system in which it is immersed.

7. Forest potential: it is the current availability of forest resources or their future productive capacity, which in turn is related to intervention in the past. This variable is determined through the structure of the forest (height of the canopy, basal area), the presence of renovations of valuable species and the presence of individuals of high commercial wood value. At this point, the information provided by key informants of the provincial forest sector used to generate management and sustainable development plans, including the provision of wood products and non-wood products from the forest and environmental impact studies in the provinces, is also relevant.

8. Potential of agricultural sustainability: it is a careful analysis of the attitude of each sector to provide sustainability of long-term agricultural activity. The assessment of this variable is important, since the particular characteristics of certain sectors make the implementation of economically sustainable long-term agricultural activities, once the detachment is carried out, not feasible.

9. Watershed conservation potential: it is to determine the existences of areas that have a strategic position for the conservation of watersheds and to ensure the provision of water in quantity and quality necessary. In this sense, special value is the areas of protection of nascents, edges of permanent and transitory water channels, and the strip of "blacked pools", the areas of recharge of aquifers, wetlands or Ramsar sites, large areas with slopes over five percent (5%), etc.

10. Value that the Indigenous and Peasant Communities give to the forest areas or their adjacent areas and the use that they can make of their natural resources for the purposes of their survival and the maintenance of their culture.

In the case of the Indigenous Communities and within the framework of Act No. 26.160, action must be taken in accordance with the provisions of Act No. 24.071, which ratified Convention No. 169 of the International Labour Organization (ILO).

Characterizing their ethnic status, evaluating the type of use of the space they make, the situation of tenure of the land in which they live and establishing their future projection of use will be necessary to assess the relevance of the continuity of certain sectors of forest and to generate a strategic plan of action that will allow to solve or at least mitigate the problems that may be detected in the medium term.