Challenges and opportunities & consultation to operationalize regional strategy and action plan for forest and landscape restoration in Asia-Pacific
In 2011, the Bonn Challenge was announced with a goal to restore 150 million ha of deforested and degraded lands by 2020. This ambitious goal was reinforced during the UN Climate Summit 2014 in New York where more than 130 signatories endorsed calls to restore more than 350 million ha of forests and croplands by 2030. In the Asia-Pacific region, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) has adopted a goal of increasing forest cover in the region by at least 20 million ha by 2020, and member countries of the Asia-Pacific Forestry Commission (APFC) and other organizations are placing increasing emphasis on forest restoration.
In light of these ambitious global targets and emerging national commitments, it is imperative to develop low-cost strategies and techniques for landscape restoration. The most widely used restoration approach involving tree planting is often costly and its application for restoring vast expanses of degraded forestlands may be limited.
A regional workshop will be organized in Nanning, Guangxi Province, China to better understand the challenges and opportunities for natural forest regeneration and to promote its inclusion as a major component of large-scale restoration initiatives. The specific objectives of the workshop are as follows:
- Raise awareness among policymakers and practitioners regarding the potential of natural generation in contributing to the achievement of forest restoration goals.
- Share experience in and scope for using natural regeneration as a tool for forest restoration.
- Discuss key issues related to restoring forestlands through natural regeneration: including the ecology, techniques and monitoring of regeneration; enabling policy, regulatory and institutional framework; and the economic and social dimensions of natural regeneration.
- Identify barriers, gaps and opportunities for mainstreaming the application of natural regeneration as a viable and effective strategy in forest restoration; and
- Develop recommendations on the way forward to promote the use of natural regeneration in regional and national restoration initiatives.
The result of the workshop will also feed into the consultation on regional strategy and action plan for forest and landscape restoration which will be incorporated into the final session of the workshop.