FOREST LANDSCAPE RESTORATION AND THE BONN CHALLENGE
20-21 MARCH 2015 | LA REDOUTE | BONN-BAD GODESBERG | GERMANY HIGH LEVEL ROUNDTABLE WHAT IS THE RESTORATION OPPORTUNITY? Going hand in hand with efforts to reduce deforestation, urgent action is needed to restore functionality and productivity of the planet’s vast areas of deforested and degraded land. The Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration (GPFLR) has estimated that there are more than two billion hectares where opportunities for restoration of deforested and degraded landscapes may be found – an area the size of South America. This holds the potential to not only sequester large volumes of CO2 over the critical next 50-year period but also to help lift people out of poverty and to provide sustainable livelihood options. This restoration will increase the resilience of ecosystems as well as societies and their economies. The Bonn Challenge was launched in September 2011 at a ministerial event hosted by the Government of Germany and IUCN and supported by the Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration (GPFLR). It pursues the ambitious objective to: • Restore 150 million hectares of deforested and degraded lands by 2020. The New York Declaration on Forests, which was an outcome of the 2014 Climate Summit, included the Bonn Challenge target in its ambitions and extended this goal to: • Restore at least an additional 200 million hectares by 2030. New analysis shows that achieving the Bonn Challenge target and the New York Declaration target, which in total would restore at least 350 million hectares, will: • Sequester up to 33 Gt CO2e • Reduce the emission gap needed to keep global temperature increase below 2 degrees Celsius by between 5-8 % • Generate a net economic benefit of between 0.47 and 5.6 trillion dollars over a fifty-year time horizon through increased wood forest products, carbon sequestration, recreation, and cultural values (offset against fixed and opportunity costs)1 Restoration is a critical component of REDD+, and an essential component of any practical plan to feed an additional three billion people with sustainable and climate smart agriculture. Restoring the productivity of often highly degraded urban watersheds and croplands will also be a key element of the sustainable cities agenda. 1
) Verdone, M. and Reuben, A., IUCN, 2014. Publication pending.
In addition, restoration of degraded lands provides an opportunity to smartly produce commodities from deforestation-free supply chains, as well as to reduce pressure on remaining forests. Landscape restoration can be – and has been proven to be – an economic driver rather than a financial burden, as evidenced in such countries as the Republic of Korea and Costa Rica.
A GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP Deforestation and degradation of forest landscapes is a global phenomenon, with challenges and opportunities for restoration occurring on every continent. This requires a global response. The Global Partnership on Forest and Landscape Restoration (GPFLR) is a worldwide proactive network that unites influential governments, major UN and non-governmental organisations, companies and others with a common cause to transform landscapes through restoration. Since its establishment in 2003 the GPFLR has been building support for restoration with key decision makers, both at the local and international level, and providing information and tools to catalyze and reinforce the restoration of lost forests and degraded lands around the world.
RESULTS SINCE 2011 Some milestones since the launch of the Bonn Challenge have been: • Official commitments announced during the Rio+20 Summit, the Doha UNFCCC COP and the UN Climate Summit: (in millions of hectares) • Brazil/Mata Atlantica Pact 1.1 • Colombia 1.0 • Costa Rica 1.0 • Democratic Republic of Congo 8.0 • El Salvador 1.0 • Ethiopia 15.0 • Guatemala 3.9 • Rwanda 2.0 • Uganda 2.5 • United States 15.0 • Total amount committed so far 50.4 • Contributions being confirmed: • Approximately 10 million hectares from Chile, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Regional Program of Conservacion Patagonica – part of the commitments made to Initiative 20x20, launched in December 2014 • Expressions of interest from organizations who are working with their member States to define official contributions: • Commitment from the International Network of Bamboo and Rattan to identify at least 5 million hectares from its 40 members, building on restoration initiatives from China, Philippines, India, Ethiopia and others • Commitment from Regional Program “Bosques Modelo” to identify up to 1.6 million hectares from its participating landowners and managers • More than 1 million votes for the Bonn Challenge as the most important forest action for Heads of State to endorse at the Rio+20 Summit, and second overall after sustainable energy • Adoption by the IUCN Members’ Assembly (more than 1100 state and non state members) of a resolution endorsing the Bonn Challenge and calling for action in support of it
• Launch of the Hyderabad Call for Concerted Action on Ecosystem Restoration at CBD COP 11, 2012 India, which specifically references the Bonn Challenge • Integration and expansion of the Bonn Challenge target in the New York Declaration on Forests of the Climate Summit
WHAT IS COUNTED TOWARD THE BONN CHALLENGE TARGET? Contributions represent national aspirations and commitments that are registered under the Bonn Challenge. They may be: • New forest landscape restoration initiatives over a specified number of hectares, or • Enhancements of existing national or sub-national restoration initiatives (from January 1, 2011) covering specified numbers of hectares – if these are explicitly being: • Aligned with the forest landscape restoration principles and • Brought forward as contributions to the Bonn Challenge.
WHAT ARE THE CORE PRINCIPLES OF FOREST LANDSCAPE RESTORATION? Forest landscape restoration (FLR) is an approach to regaining ecological integrity and improving human wellbeing from degraded lands through the creation of multi-functional restored landscapes. FLR enriches more narrowly defined approaches to ecological restoration, afforestation and reforestation by focusing on a mosaic of potential land uses and restoration interventions, with an aim of bringing multiple benefits to people and nature. A forest landscape is any area that once grew or could benefit from growing trees and woody plants (such as bamboos). Such landscapes include agricultural areas where on-farm trees could improve productivity, for example, or coastal areas where mangroves play a role in natural defence and service production. Central to forest landscape restoration are the following core principles: • MULTIPLE FUNCTIONS: Restoring an agreed, balanced package of landscape functions, not only increasing forest cover and not trying to re-establish the forests of the past • LANDSCAPES NOT JUST SITES: Working across whole landscapes containing mosaics of land uses, not just individual sites, so trade-offs can be made • PACKAGES OF RESTORATION STRATEGIES: Use of a range of restoration options from natural regeneration to tree planting as appropriate • STAKEHOLDER ENGAGEMENT: Active negotiation and collaboration among stakeholders • PROTECTION OF NATURAL ECOSYTEMS: Avoiding further reduction or conversion of natural forest cover and other ecosystems • LEARNING AND ADAPTING: Tailoring to local conditions, continuously learning and adapting to changes in these
WHAT DOES FOREST LANDSCAPE RESTORATION INCLUDE? The most appropriate restoration objectives and strategies for any lands will depend on local social, economic and ecological contexts as well as on national and global goals. Some examples are: • Agroforestry to enhance soils, meet energy needs and improve food security, as in Rwanda and Ethiopia. • Regeneration of native woodlands by pastoralist communities for increased dry season livestock fodder in Northern Tanzania. • Restoration of natural habitats on degraded pastureland to support eco-tourism in Costa Rica.
• Directing oil palm development to improved productivity of degraded lands as an alternative to further land clearance in Indonesia. • Managing natural regeneration in key water catchments to secure urban water supply, as in the watersheds of Beijing and Rio de Janeiro. • Nationwide reforestation of highly degraded landscapes, as in the Republic of Korea. • Regeneration and planting to aid recovery from catastrophic wildfire in the South Platte watershed in the US. • Large-scale agro-forestry to increase the productivity of severely degraded lands in the Loess Plateau in China. • Ecological restoration of tropical forest systems for improved connectivity in the Mata Atlantic region, and restoration of grasslands using woody plants in the Cerrado, in Brazil. • Active restoration of coastal mangroves to improve the health of fisheries - and to develop ecotourism (on Costa Rica‘s Chira Island) or reduce maintenance costs of sea walls (in Vietnam). In forest landscape restoration, context is everything. Whether or not a particular land use and restoration strategy is aligned with the forest landscape restoration approach will depend on issues such as scale, surrounding land uses, and the participatory process by which decisions on land use are taken.
WHY CONTRIBUTE TO THE BONN CHALLENGE? • To gain recognition as a leader in a global movement and cohort of leaders and demonstrate how national priorities and actions contribute to international commitments • To access technical support to implement and scale up of positive efforts as part of a growing community of practice with a network of experts, including on mapping, economics, finance, carbon, diagnosis of success factors • To attract resources by unlocking existing funding and opening up additional resourcing
HOW DOES THE BONN CHALLENGE WORK? Countries, companies, communities, institutions and others register commitments to restore degraded lands they own or have the rights to manage – and they begin to restore, often with technical support from members of the GPFLR. GPFLR members and other partners help facilitate the planning and implementation of successful restoration and provide support on the front-end, before a contribution has been confirmed, to provide knowledge on restoration potential, build political will, or help catalyze necessary finance. The first step is to express interest by consulting with the GPFLR through its Secretariat and members, and evaluation of the alignment of a potential Bonn Challenge commitment with national or sub-national priorities and with the principles of forest landscape restoration. This is followed by a process of preparing and confirming a contribution to the target, including defining the location and number of hectares, the nature of stakeholder support for the restoration initiative, and the planned suite of restoration strategies. Next commitments are publicized through special high profile events and through www.BonnChallenge.org. This then triggers a process of ongoing exchange and the mobilization of support for the assessment of restoration potential and implementation of restoration actions.
EVOLUTION OF THE BONN CHALLENGE At the first global workshop on the implementation of forest landscape restoration, which took place in April 2005 in Petrópolis, Brazil, co-hosted by the Governments of Brazil and the United Kingdom, participants agreed to the Petropolis Challenge ”to restore forest landscapes to benefit people and nature and contribute
to reversing the trends of forest loss and degradation.”Key elements to meet the challenge were to grow the Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration and to build a learning network around restoration. In November 2009 a High Level Roundtable on Forest Landscape Restoration was convened in London by the Government of the United Kingdom and IUCN to bring together a group of ministers and other high level representatives from government, the private sector, indigenous peoples’ organizations and civil society to produce the London Challenge, which focused on the themes of Restoration and Climate Change, and Restoration and People, and outlined a work plan for the Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration. In February 2011, the UN Forum on Forests (UNFF) called on Member States and others to build on the work of the GPFLR to further develop and implement forest landscape restoration. Action on restoration contributes to the Global Objectives on Forests, adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2007, particularly Global Objective 1 which calls for reversing the loss of forest cover worldwide through sustainable forest management, including protection, restoration, afforestation and reforestation, and increase efforts to prevent forest degradation. The Bonn Challenge was launched in September 2011 at a ministerial event hosted by the Government of Germany and IUCN and supported by the Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration (GPFLR). Leaders from all sectors called for the restoration of 150 million hectares of deforested and degraded lands by 2020. The Bonn Challenge is an implementation vehicle for existing international commitments including CBD Aichi Target 15 which calls for restoration by 2020 of at least 15% of degraded ecosystems, thereby contributing to climate-change mitigation and adaptation and to combating desertification, and the UNFCCC REDD+ goal to slow, halt and reverse forest cover and carbon loss. This is to be achieved through reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, and through conservation, sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks. The Rio+20 Summit in 2012 agreed the land degradation neutral global goal, in support to the Convention to Combat Desertification, to which the Bonn Challenge also contributes. In a demonstration of continuing global momentum for restoration, the New York Declaration on Forests from the 2014 Climate Summit – which was endorsed by more than 100 governments, civil society and indigenous organizations, and private enterprises – included the Bonn Challenge target in its ambitions and extended this goal by calling for restoration of at least an additional 200 million hectares by 2030. The Bonn Challenge will also contribute to achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. It can be a resource for countries, associations, enterprises and others who manage land and wish to meet national goals on restoration of degraded and deforested lands while contributing to achieving these international commitments and being recognized for doing so.
FOR MORE INFORMATION Learn more about the Bonn Challenge at: www.bonnchallenge.org Learn more about the Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration (GPFLR) at: http://www.forestlandscaperestoration.org/ Or contact: Carole Saint-Laurent, GPFLR Coordinator at: [email protected]
or GPFLR Secretariat at [email protected]