Australia's press conference on the Asia-Pacific Rainforest Recovery Plan. Photo: Pilar Valbuena for CIFOR

Perspectives from 2015 Global Landscapes Forum

Mon December 2015

Over 100 organizations contributed to the 2015 Global Landscapes Forum, hosting discussions and press launches, presenting their work in pavilions and at side events. Also, environmental online platforms and specialised media outlets featured the Forum or certain aspects of it. The below gives an overview of how they reflected on the event on their website, in blogs and articles. Click on the organizations’ names to get to the original post.

CGIAR Research Program on Water, Land and Ecosystems

Imagine walking onto a stage in a room full of 200+ people, in front of a panel of renowned experts, and pitching a solution that you and a group of 10 peers from around the world developed in four short days. And you speak English as a second or third language.

For four days, 50 young innovators worked on solutions to landscape challenges defined by five organizations as part of the Youth in Landscapes Initiative. On Sunday, they took the stage at the Global Landscapes Forum, the largest parallel event to the COP21 climate talks, and pitched their solutions to a panel of experts in a “Dragons Den” session. Without fail, they left the audience in high energy and spirit at the end of an intense weekend conference.

CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security

Countries at the UN climate talks in Paris have made it clear that addressing agriculture in the context of climate change is a priority, according to the first-ever comprehensive analysis of agriculture in the national climate plans submitted to the United Nations in the lead up to the talks. The analysis by the CGIAR Research Program on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security (CCAFS) released at the Global Landscapes Forum reveals that agriculture is discussed in 80% of the so-called Intended Nationally Determined Contributions (INDCs), and points to a major funding gap for implementing most of the proposed actions.

International Food Policy Research Institute

IFPRI has joined the thousands of policymakers, researchers, ministers, NGOs, and country leaders in Paris for the 21st Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21/CMP11) and the 2015 Global Landscapes Forum.

A number of IFPRI researchers have presented at various sessions and events, including “Colombia tackles climate change: Forests, agriculture and land use in a national green growth vision,”“Up and down the scales of time and place: Integrating global trends and local decisions to make the world more food-secure by 2050,” and “Commons tenure for a common future.” Researchers have also been blogging and tweeting about the events—and the topics being discussed. Take a look at IFPRI’s Research blog for  “Do economic predictions of damage from climate change cause policymakers to focus on the wrong thing?

International Union for the Conservation of Nature

“Paris COP 21 and Global Landscapes Forum 2015 are not just about political commitments. They are about actions and implementation,” says Franzjosef Schafhausen, Director General, Climate Policy, Federal Ministry for Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety, Government of Germany. “Bringing back degraded and deforested lands can help stabilise the climate while sustainably supporting global and local economies.” The new commitments were made during the Global Landscapes Forum at a session hosted by IUCN.

Earth Innovation Institute

On the second day of the Forum, Executive Director Dan Nepstad presented alongside a panel of experts for the discussion “Taking stock of REDD+: Past, present and future”, which addressed the opportunities, barriers, and future of REDD+ (Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation). Since its inception almost a decade ago, the UN mechanism has not yet had the impact on the ground as originally hoped. However, REDD+ is still the main policy option for tackling forest-related climate change, and is moving forward even as other private and public mechanisms come into play.

Sustainable Tropics Alliance

STA partners from Pronatura Sur, Earth Innovation Institute, IPAM, The Green Belt Movement, and Inovasi Bumi meet during the Global Landscapes Forum at COP 21 in Paris. Together, they hosted a table on promoting low-emission rural development models in the Tropics. Representatives from IPAM presented at the CCal platform as well as the SOMAI platform on indigenous threats.

Danone Livelihoods Fund

Livelihoods, which launched its new investment fund dedicated to smallholder farming- the Livelihoods Fund for Family Farming (Livelihoods 3F)- in February 2015 with Danone and Mars, Inc. is convinced of the power of large companies to transform their relationships with their producers in order to create added value in their ecosystems. It presented its unique fund model at the 2015 Global Landscapes Forum (GLF) in Paris this past Saturday (December 5).

Food Tank

Alongside COP21, other workshops such as the 2015 Global Landscapes Forum (GLF Paris) will take place. …Farmers are responsible for much of the world’s land use and associated climate emissions, and are key partners in reducing the environmental impact of human activities. The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) is working to place a value on the invisible environmental services provided by farmers. TEEB for Agriculture and Food (TEEBAgFood) specifically examines the links between ecosystems and food, helping policymakers to understand the true worth of eco-agri-food-systems.

e360 digest and Climate Change News

The continent may often conjure up images of spreading deserts and ransacked forests. But some of the biggest hitters in global environmental management unveiled plans in Paris for a grand restoration of Africa. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, a former Nigerian finance minister, stressed the need for landscape restoration. “Carbon will come back to earth in trees, bushes, crops and soils, where it will bring life and prosperity,” said Andrew Steer, CEO of the World Resources Institute, which has masterminded the plan with the World Bank, the African Union’s New Partnership for Africa’s Development, and others. They want $2 billion a year spent on restoring 100 million hectares of Africa by 2030 — an area three times the size of Germany.  The plans were announced to some 3,000 delegates attending a Global Landscapes Forum in Paris on Sunday. “We need landscape restoration for development and for climate,” said Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, a former Nigerian finance minister.

Internews and Earth Journalism Network

Environmental journalists face a unique challenge: covering local stories of environmental change requires an understanding of global processes.

To address this challenge, Internews’ Earth Journalism Network (EJN) is launching to provide the first global GeoJournalism interface focused on surfacing patterns uncovered by local journalists around the world….

The initial prototype of Open Earth, built in partnership with Stamen Design, was first demonstrated publicly at the Global Landscapes Forum in Paris, France on December 6 during the COP21 Climate Summit. The site now hosts links to more than 6,000 stories from around the world that are searchable according to region and topic.


Session topics during GLF were as diverse as the challenges facing environmental protection and sustainable development today: soil degradation, deforestation, food insecurity, youth migration, and water salinization were among the key issues. But over the course of the 2-day forum, a core message became clear: protecting human dignity and environmental integrity is not an either/or. Taking a landscapes view, our health and the health of the environment is interdependent, and mutually beneficial. As Danone CEO Emmanuel Faber told participants, “we can’t talk about anything, without talking about everything.”


Case studies assessing the ITTO Guidelines for the Restoration, Management and Rehabilitation of Degraded Secondary Tropical Forests featured in a knowledge-sharing session held as part of the 2015 Global Landscapes Forum on 6 December 2015. The purpose of the session was to increase understanding of the factors to be taken into account in successful forest and landscape restoration and management.

For more partner coverage, see our blog How partners spread the word on 2015 Global Landscapes Forum




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