Global Landscapes Forum Advances Landscape Approach for Climate, Sustainable Development
The Global Landscapes Forum met on December 5th-6th in Paris during the 21st Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Members discussed landscape management in the context of climate change and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The Forum was launched in 2013 as a partnership between organizations and individuals that are involved in landscape research and action. Landscape research includes work in agriculture, forestry, development, and more. According to the Forum’s website, a landscapes approach “entails viewing and managing multiple land uses in an integrated manner, considering both the natural environment and the human systems that depend on it.” About 11 organizations are part of the consortium, which has the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) as coordinating partners.
One of the highlights of the event was the launching of the AFR100 initiative by various organizations, such as the World Bank, TerrAfrica, the European Union and the World Resources Institute. Ten African countries (DRC, Ethiopia, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Niger, Rwanda, Togo and Uganda) have committed to restore 100 million hectares of forest by 2030.
In a New York Times article about the initiative, Wanjira Mathai (daughter of Wangari Maathai) noted
“I have seen restoration in communities both large and small across Africa, but the promise of a continent-wide movement is truly inspiring,” said Mathai, chairwoman of the Green Belt Movement founded by her mother. “Restoring landscapes will empower and enrich rural communities while providing downstream benefits to those in cities. Everybody wins. “