FAO Launches Guidelines on Urban Forests
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Launched by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), the 'Guidelines on Urban and Peri-Urban Forestry' explain how cities can maximize the contribution of urban forests to addressing local and global sustainable development challenges.

The publication presents an overview of how to develop an enabling environment for urban forestry through appropriate governance, policies and legal frameworks, and sets out measures required for implementing successful urban forestry programmes.

16 October 2016: Urban forests can make cities healthier, safer and wealthier, but their potential is not fully realized, according to the ‘Guidelines on Urban and Peri-Urban Forestry’ launched by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) on the sidelines of the UN Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III), held from 17-20 October 2016, in Quito, Ecuador.

The publication explains how cities can maximize the contribution of urban forests to addressing local and global sustainable development challenges, including climate change mitigation and adaptation, food and nutrition security, and human health and well-being, in the face of increasing urbanization. It outlines ways in which urban forests can contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), from making cities more sustainable, to reducing poverty and hunger, enhancing natural habitat and fostering sustainable economic growth. Other key issues addressed include: biodiversity and landscapes; green economy; risk management; mitigating land and soil degradation; water and watersheds; wood security; and sociocultural values.

The publication also presents an overview of how to develop an enabling environment for urban forestry through appropriate governance, policies and legal frameworks, and sets out measures required for successful urban forestry programmes and how to implement them. These include measures on communication and awareness-raising, community engagement, building alliances and partnerships, and identifying research needs.

Authored by F. Salbitano, S. Borelli, M. Conigliaro and Y. Chen, the publication is the result of a collaborative process initiated by FAO, to develop voluntary guidelines that optimize the contribution of forests and trees to sustainable urban development. The process involved scientists, practitioners and public administrators from cities worldwide who participated in a series of workshops to discuss the elements and key challenges of urban forestry. [FAO Press Release] [Guidelines on Urban and Peri-Urban Forestry] [FAO Website on Urban and Peri-Urban Forestry] [HABITAT III Website]


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