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Forests: A natural solution to climate change, crucial for a sustainable future

10 Oct 2018

By José Graziano da Silva, FAO Director-General; Achim Steiner, UNDP Administrator; and Erik Solheim, Head of UN Environment

Throughout history, times of crisis have yielded extraordinary innovation and social cooperation. Not only has this been essential for conquering many seemingly insurmountable challenges, but it has also shown one of the greatest strengths of human nature: we can best face and overcome crises through joint, creative action.

Anthropogenic climate change constitutes one such historical crisis. The UN-REDD Programme, a joint undertaking of FAO, UNDP and UN Environment to fight deforestation and forest degradation, was developed to advance the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and to foster innovative and collaborative approaches to address the existential challenge of climate change.

Founded ten years ago with the sustained and substantial support of Denmark, Japan, Luxembourg, Norway, Spain, Switzerland and the European Union, UN-REDD was the first joint global UN programme on climate change; it has been a pioneer of innovative policy and financing approaches to valuing and protecting forests and their social and ecosystem services.

The Programme now encompasses 64 partner countries, and it has become a flagship UN partnership for the Paris Agreement and for delivering on the Sustainable Development Agenda. Today, it is a global knowledge hub for solutions to deforestation and forest degradation and a major world partner in the implementation of nature-based solutions to climate change.

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