REDD+ Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation

Finding the common ground to halt deforestation


On 18 July 2018, institutional representatives gathered during the 6th World Forest Week in Rome, Italy at FAO Headquarters to attend an event entitled “Common Ground: multipurpose land-use planning for halting deforestation”. The event explored how participatory land use planning, can tackle the multi-sectoral drivers of deforestation and degradation. Panellists included government officials from Brazil, Indonesia, and Mexico, alongside representatives from United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, UN Environment  and the International Fund for Agricultural Development discussed how to scale up best practice for land-use planning.

Land is a scarce resource increasingly affected by competition of mutually exclusive uses. Fertile land in rural areas is becoming scarcer due to population growth, pollution, erosion and desertification, effects of climate change, and urbanization. On the remaining land, local, national and international users with different socioeconomic status and power compete to achieve food security, economic growth, energy supply, nature conservation and other objectives. Integrated land-use planning can help to find a balance among these competing and sometimes contradictory uses.

To ensure that development is truly sustainable, win-win solutions are crucial for halting deforestation, reversing land degradation as well as contributing to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals; including SDG 15 Life on Land and SDG 13 Climate action, as well as SDG 2 Zero Hunger and SDG 12 Responsible consumption and production.

“There is growing evidence to suggest that countries that adopt multipurpose land-use planning frameworks are more likely to successfully navigate the complex objectives and interests that exist in the local development agenda, and achieve win-win solutions” said Dan Gustafson Deputy Director General, FAO.

As the recently released State of the World’s Forests 2018 states, landscape approaches can balance sustainability of livelihoods, food security and vital ecosystem services whilst tackling key land use challenges. Integrating landscape approaches, or land-use planning, into national strategies and development priorities is part of building the forests of the future and halting deforestation and land degradation.

Governments are taking a lead in the implementation of integrated land-use planning and land management, using innovative tools and approaches. For example, Rural Environmental Registry tool (Cadastro Ambiental Rural) in Brazil is an instrument for generating and integrating environmental information of landholdings in Brazil and has been successfully applied at scale. “Community participation has been crucial for the use of CAR and multipurpose land-use planning. Without their commitment we would not have been able to register 5.2 million rural properties across the country” said Mr. Carlos Eduardo Sturm, Director of Forest Registry and Development for the Brazilian Forest Service.

Panellists also discussed how to create the appropriate enabling conditions to implement integrated landscape management to ensure local development is balanced with national and international climate action objectives. “Integrated land use planning is a key ally to address climate change and it is increasingly recognized as a central part of the formulation of REDD+ strategies Land Degradation Neutrality and Nationally Determined Contributions” said Malgorzata Buszko-Briggs, Forestry Department, FAO in her concluding remarks.

FAO has been at the forefront of the state-of-the-art technological solutions for forest monitoring and land-use planning, such as SEPAL (System for Earth Observation Data Access, Processing and Analysis for Land Monitoring) and Open Foris tools

For more information, please contact:

Malgorzata Buszko-Briggs

Programme Officer, REDD+/NFM Cluster

Forestry Department, FAO

[email protected]

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