Why we need business to restore landscapes

GLF Live with Christophe Kouame, Tim Christophersen, Derrick Emsley and Analí Bustos

As the climate crisis bites, businesses across the globe are increasingly committing to achieving net-zero emissions. But will this be enough to prevent catastrophe?

In the run-up to the COP28 climate summit, it’s more crucial than ever to recognize and embrace one of our most promising climate solutions: landscape restoration.

How can businesses from all sectors and regions lead real change and avoid greenwashing? How can business, science and youth movements join forces to conserve and restore landscapes?

In this GLF Live hosted in cooperation with Salesforce and 1t.org, we speak with Tim Christophersen, vice president of climate action at Salesforce, Derrick Emsley, co-founder and CEO of Tentree and Veritree, CIFOR-ICRAF senior scientist Christophe Kouame and Analí Bustos, the GLF’s 2021 Forest Restoration Steward.

Since 2020, over 90 companies have pledged to conserve, restore and grow more than 8 billion trees in over 65 countries as part of the 1t.org mission to accelerate nature-based solutions in support of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, the Bonn Challenge and the Mangrove Breakthrough. This GLF Live will explore how we can build on these partnerships and bring corporations into the global movement for restoration.

Tim Christophersen is the vice president for climate action at Salesforce. Within the global Impact team, he is focused on the role of nature-based solutions to climate change. Before joining Salesforce, Tim was head of the ‘Nature for Climate’ branch at the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and led a growing global movement backed by all UN Member States and over 120 partner organizations to ‘prevent, halt and reverse the degradation of ecosystems worldwide’: the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021–2030.

Derrick Emsley, named Forbes Top 30 Under 30 and Canada’s Top 40 Under 40, has been actively involved in environmental stewardship from a young age. At 16, he and his brother founded a tree-planting company that sold carbon credits to businesses, a venture that saw over USD 1 million in contracts and planted 150, 000 trees. This venture helped pave the way to the founding of tentree in 2012, where Derrick serves as CEO, guiding the company’s vision and strategy. tentree is a lifestyle brand that plants ten trees for every product sold. In just under a decade, tentree has set new standards in the sustainable apparel world while also leading to the planting of almost 100 million trees. In 2021, after identifying a need for more transparency in the global reforestation space, Derrick, along with his partners, launched a technology company – veritree – focused on building the tools to monitor, verify, audit and amplify global reforestation work. In just two short years, veritree has supported over 100 businesses to invest in nature in a transparent, auditable, and impactful way.

Christophe Kouame has over 25 years’ experience in agricultural research for development in several African countries. Previously, he led the implementation of ICRAF’s public-private partnership programme, Vision for Change, and worked in various capacities in Côte d’Ivoire with the national vegetable research for development programme, IDESSA (Institut des Savanes) and the international cooperation unit of CNRA. Kouame was conferred the title of Officier de l’ordre du mérite agricole de Côte d’Ivoire in February 2013 and has mentored several doctoral students in Côte d’Ivoire, Cameroon and France. He holds a PhD in Agronomy from the University of Florida.holds a PhD in Agronomy from the University of Florida. 

Analí Bustos is a PhD candidate in the Research Group on Ecological Interactions in Agroecosystems at FAUBA in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Since 2016, she has been working on a forest restoration project called the Monte Alegre Natural Reserve. She also advises other projects and farmers who want to transition to more sustainable practices on their properties. Her passion is researching and promoting restoration holistically: not only of ecosystems and environmental services but also the restoration of society’s feelings about Nature. Analí has a bachelor’s degree in biological sciences from the National University of Río Cuarto in Córdoba, Argentina, and a master’s degree in ecology and nature conservation from the Federal University of Paraná in Curitiba, Brazil.

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financeforestsrestorationsustainable finance

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