IUCN Discusses Policy Convergence on Forest and Land Restoration
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An IUCN report underscores how interventions to support forest landscape restoration (FLR) and land degradation neutrality (LDN) contribute to biodiversity conservation, the goals of the post-2020 biodiversity agenda and climate mitigation and adaptation.

The publication identifies an opportunity for Parties to the Rio Conventions to optimize synergies and impacts across the Bonn Challenge and LDN, to align investments and actions with the national restoration agendas, strengthen inter-sectoral coordination, and promote consolidated reporting.

September 2019: The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) has released a publication on the linkages and complementarities between forest landscape restoration (FLR) and land degradation neutrality (LDN). The report recommends priority actions for optimizing synergies among FLR and LDN objectives.

The publication titled, ‘Reviving land and restoring landscapes,’ highlights the policy convergence between processes to set targets and achieve FLR and LDN. The Bonn Challenge aims to restore 150 million hectares by 2020 and 350 million hectares by 2030. SDG target 15.3 calls for combating desertification and achieving a LDN world by 2030. Commitments for landscape restoration under the Bonn Challenge contribute to country LDN goals; similarly, country commitments to LDN can support FLR.

The report underscores how interventions to support FLR and LDN can contribute to biodiversity conservation, the goals of the post-2020 biodiversity agenda and climate mitigation and adaptation. Further, implementing sustainable land management (SLM) can improve water efficiency and quality, contributing to SDG 6 (clean water and sanitation) and also contributing to agricultural productivity and food security (SDG 2) as well as SDG 1 (no poverty) and SDG 3 (good health and well-being), among other SDGs.

Commitments for landscape restoration under the Bonn Challenge contribute to country LDN goals; similarly, country commitments to LDN can support FLR.

The report emphasizes that countries are “making significant progress in target setting.” To date, 59 countries and private organizations have pledged to restore over 168 million hectares through the Bonn Challenge. By May 2019, 122 countries had committed to set national targets for LDN. To improve efficiencies in land and landscape restoration, the report recommends that governments and development partners strengthen cross-sectoral collaboration and reporting. To sustain momentum for delivering both aims, the report further recommends that governments and development partners promote consultation among the leads of the Bonn Challenge, the LDN and national focal points and create an enabling environment for private investment.

The publication identifies an opportunity for Parties to the Rio Conventions to optimize synergies and impacts across these two initiatives to align investments and actions with national restoration agendas, strengthen inter-sectoral coordination, and promote consolidated reporting. The report describes how countries that capture synergies between Bonn Challenge and LDN commitments have effective inter-sectoral coordination mechanisms; in 7 of 13 countries analyzed, countries oversee Bonn Challenge and LDN commitments within the same government entity. For example, the report finds Côte d’Ivoire “demonstrates a balanced landscape restoration approach” in both FLR and LDN. Cameroon has aligned its FLR and LDN targets and references the Bonn Challenge in its LDN report.

The Rio Conventions are the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). [Publication Webpage] [Publication: Reviving land and restoring landscapes]


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