Land and forest are at the crossroads of different agendas: food and energy security, jobs and growth, stability, peace and security, biodiversity and climate action.
Forests are cost-effective solutions for carbon sequestration, vital sources of biodiversity and of livelihoods for nearly 25% of the world’s population. There has been some progress towards sustainable forest management, balancing environmental, socio-cultural and economic aims. But how can we reduce and stop deforestation and forest degradation to instead conserve biodiversity, enhance forest carbon stocks and ensure sustainable socio-economic development?
Land degradation is a related issue. This affects 1.5 billion people globally and is a major cause of forced displacement, conflict and further environmental damage, including ecosystems loss. One Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) targets precisely aims to combat desertification, restore degraded land and soil, and achieve neutrality. Managing landscapes sustainably combines environmental, climate and livelihood/development considerations, and is therefore an effective way of sustainably managing natural resources. How can these three dimensions be balanced to ensure productivity, efficient use of resources, and ecosystem and people resilience?