RESTORE+ Mid-term meeting
Halfway into the project, the RESTORE+ project consortium invited national stakeholders from Brazil, government representatives from Indonesia, as well as representatives of the broader international restoration community to participate in the project’s mid-term meeting in Foz do Iguaçu.
During the three-day meeting, hosted by INPE and IIASA, the RESTORE+ consortium partners presented country specific project approaches and preliminary results. In addition to present and discuss the project’s progress of the last few months, the project consortium also engaged in open discussions with participants from Brazil and Indonesia. Not only to inform but also aiming at consulting these stakeholders about project relevance and potential contribution to evidence-based policy making processes and discuss potential contribution to regional and global restoration initiatives.
A keynote by Thelma Krug, Vice-Chair of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) opened the meeting. She highlighted the strong relevance of the project in light of the two recent IPCC Special Reports on Global warming of 1.5°C and on Climate Change and Land which draw attention to reversing desertification, land restoration including peatland, and soil restoration as well as carbon dioxide removal via reforestation, afforestation and Bio-energy with carbon capture and storage (BECCS) as key elements of climate change mitigation pathways.
To spot a light on the national context and policies for enhancing land use sustainability in Brazil, Gustavo Luedemann (Institute for Applied Economic Research, IPEA) introduced to the Status quo of Brazil’s NDC targets. For the country, agriculture and the potential to invert its carbon footprint plays a decisive role as RESTORE+ advisory board member Eduardo Assad (Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation, Embrapa) elaborated. Here, current measures like the Plano ABC (Plan for low carbon emission agriculture) presented by José Eustáquio (Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply (MAPA)) and the Forest Code and their effective implementation are central.
Further to political approaches, also non-governmental landscape restoration initiatives in Brazil presented achievements and challenges of restoration programs and shared experiences about engaging smallholders in recovering ecosystem services in restoration areas.
Medrilzam, Director for the Environment of the Indonesian Ministry of National Development Planning (Bappenas) gave an overview of current restoration and national development policies in Indonesia. He presented the Bappenas led Low Carbon Development Indonesia (LCDI) initiatives and forest and landscape restoration policies supporting the LCDI, which is part of the currently formulated National Medium-Term Development Plan (RPJMN) 2020-2024. RESTORE+ contributed to the land use sector part of this Bappenas initiative by ensuring feasibility of low carbon pathways both from biophysical productivity and land use economy perspective.
Further experiences from Indonesia such as having restoration as part of South Sumatra Province Green Growth Plan and the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility in East Kalimantan, were shared by RESTORE+ team members Sonya Dewi (ICRAF) and Zulfira Warta (WWF).
The meeting also discussed challenges in achieving national restoration targets in Indonesia and Brazil. Challenges such as lack of financing and need for multi-sectoral policies and synergies between different funding sources, actors and stakeholders were seen as common to both countries. Identifying economically viable restoration measure with lasting impact can be difficult due to high socio-ecological variability of restoration sites. This poses challenges in mobilizing large scale financial resources as well as institutional mechanisms for delivery.
Input and feedback from meeting participants gathered during the sessions was also relevant to inform the second half of the project and to discuss next steps as well as follow-ups and necessary adjustments for the second half of the project.
Full meeting agenda
Watch the meeting video!
A dedicated mid-term page with more information including interim project results and a project mid-term report will follow shortly!