Forest protection is a branch of forestry which is concerned with the preservation or improvement of a forest and prevention and control of damage to forest by natural or man made causes like forest fires, plant pests, and adverse climatic conditions (global warming). Forest protection also has a legal status and rather than protection from only people damaging the forests is seen to be broader and include forest pathology too. Due to the different emphases there exist widely different methods forest protection. In German-speaking countries, forest protection would focus on the biotic and abiotic factors that are non-crime related. A protected forest is not the same as a protection forest. These terms can lead to some confusion in English, although they are clearer in other languages. As a result, reading English literature can be problematic for non-experts due to localization and conflation of meanings. The types of man-induced abuse that forest protection seeks to prevent include:
* Aggressive or unsustainable intensive farming and logging
* Pollution of the forest soil
* Expanding city development caused by population explosion and the resulting urban sprawl There is considerable debate over the effectiveness of forest protection methods. Enforcement of laws regarding purchased forest land is weak or non-existent in most parts of the world. In the increasingly dangerous South America, home of major rainforests, officials of the Brazilian National Agency for the Environment (IBAMA) have recently been shot during their routine duties.