UNFF Note Suggests Actions to Advance Forest Policy Coherence, SFM
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The report observes that many forest-related organizations have yet to fully integrate global forest goals and targets into their forest-related strategies, plans and programmes.

The report suggests additional analytical work to advance a common understanding of SFM and ensure that all issues and aspects of forests are sufficiently covered within the UN system and across the Collaborative Partnership on Forests’s member organizations.

15 February 2019: In preparation for the 14th session of the UN Forum on Forests (UNFF), the UNFF Secretariat released a background note that finds that the strategic plan for forests and its global forest goals and targets provide a “solid foundation for advancing global forest policy coherence” within the UN system and across the Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF) member organizations. The report reflects on coherence and complementarity of forest-related programmes within the UN system and across the CPF, including as a contribution to the SDGs.

The report titled, ‘Enhancing Global Forest Policy Coherence and a Common International Understanding of Sustainable Forest Management (E/CN.18/2019/5),’ aims to serve as a basis for a discussion on the topic at UNFF 14. The note provides background information and an update on intersessional activities on the issue since UNFF 13.

The report states that the strategic plan for forests and its six global forest goals and associated targets provide momentum and an effective framework for enhancing forest-related contributions to implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the UN system and other regional and sub-regional processes more broadly. The report observes that many forest-related organizations have yet to fully integrate global forest goals and targets into their forest-related strategies, plans and programmes. Within this context, the report recommends inviting the governing bodies of these organizations to integrate the global forest goals into their strategic documents and to align their timelines to 2030, in line with the 2030 Agenda and the strategic plan for forests.

Forest-related indicators can contribute to advancing a common understanding of SFM through identifying factors to be measured to address global progress and trends.

On major groups and other stakeholders, the report states that major stakeholders discussed opportunities for increased policy coherence at an expert group meeting in January 2019. Major groups agreed they could demonstrate forest policy coherence within and among their own workshops, including through outlining specific actions to promote coherence such as developing a knowledge-sharing platform, advocating for gender mainstreaming, enterprise development and land and tree tenure security, promoting mutual accountability and sharing information. The report reflects that the major group workplan for 2018-2020 represents an “important step by non-state actors to support the strategic plan for forests and its global forest goals and targets” as well as to advocate for greater policy coherence at global, regional, national and local levels.

On policy coherence at a global level, the report concludes that achieving forest policy coherence and complementarity will largely depend on guidance and resources provided by UN entities’ governing bodies and CPF member organizations.

On sustainable forest management (SFM) and associated indicators, the report suggests additional analytical work to further advance a common understanding of SFM and ensure that all issues and aspects of forests are sufficiently covered within the UN system and across the CPF’s member organizations. The report proposes that the global core set of forest-related indicators, including SDG 15 (life on land) indicator 15.2.1 (progress towards SFM), contribute to advancing a common understanding of SFM through identifying key factors that need to be measured to address global progress and trends towards SFM. The report recommends that the CPF’s member organizations governing bodies encourage use of the already agreed global forest indicators and expedite finalization of the remaining pending indicators.

On next steps, the report suggests activities to be undertaken leading up to UNFF 15. The report recommends UNFF 15 then report on progress and the outcomes of analytical work on SFM. The report concludes that such a progress report will provide a basis for UNFF 15 to decide on follow-up actions for promoting global forest policy coherence and a common understanding of SFM, in line with decisions on its quadrennial programme of work for the period 2021-2024. [Enhancing Global Forest Policy Coherence and a Common International Understanding of SFM]


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