N4C Weekly Brief: Nov 8-14
Briefing Room 16.11.23
How Much Can Trees Fight Climate Change? Massively, but Not Alone, Study Finds
The New York Times, Caitrin Einhorn, 13 November
The New York Times covers a new report, with input from more than 200 authors that leveraged vast troves of data collected by satellites and on the ground research, finding that restoring global forests where they occur naturally could potentially capture an additional 226 gigatons of planet-warming carbon, equivalent to about a third of the amount that humans have released since the beginning of the Industrial Era. In The Guardian’s coverage, Crowther Labs’ Head Tom Crowther summarized the findings: “Conserving forests, ending deforestation and empowering people who live in association with those forests has the power to capture 61% of our potential. That’s huge. It’s potentially reframing forest conservation. It’s no longer avoided emissions, it’s massive carbon drawdown, too…It can be achieved by millions of local communities, Indigenous communities, farmers and foresters who promote biodiversity. It could be agroforestry for cacao, coffee or banana, natural regeneration, rewilding or creating habitat corridors. They’re successful when nature becomes the economic choice. It’s not easy but it’s doable.”
Nature4Climate shares a post noting that the study states that 61% of this 226 gigatonne carbon capture potential can be delivered by conserving the world’s existing natural forests.
Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon falls to lowest since 2018
Reuters, Peter Frontini and Jake Spring, 9 November
Reuters reports that Brazilian government data shows deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon dropped by 22.3% in the 12 months through July as President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva made good on a pledge to rein in the destruction that happened under his predecessor Jair Bolsonaro. Reuters reports that China’s state-run food group COFCO International and Modern Farming Group, which makes milk products, have signed an agreement “to supply and accept soybeans” coming from sustainable areas of production in Brazil, the world’s top supplier of the oilseed.
‘New cropland cannot come from deforestation’: McKinsey raises alarm over growing land use pressure
BusinessGreen, James Murray, 8 November
BusinessGreen shares a report from McKinsey that finds the world will need to find additional land equivalent to all of Brazil’s cropland by 2030 if it is to meet the world’s projected demand for food, feed, fuel, and natural capital based on business as usual practices. The report warned hotspots of competition for land are already emerging in Latin America and Sub-Saharan Africa, which are likely to be the source of most additional cropland, leading to increased pressure on forested land and higher land and food prices.
IPDD investors begin outreach to US government agencies on deforestation
Responsible Investor, Gina Gambetta, 8 November
Responsible Investor reports that the Investor Policy Dialogue on Deforestation has begun outreach to US government agencies to drive forward solutions on deforestation. Financial Times reports that food companies are lobbying EU policymakers, warning that they are running out of time to prepare for new EU rules to cut carbon emissions from the supply chains of several key commodities, accusing Brussels of issuing proposals that lack detail and will fail to stop deforestation. E&E News covers EU conservative policymakers’ attempts to weaken key targets in ongoing closed-door negotiations over the EU nature restoration bill. BusinessGreen covers the launch of the new ‘It’s Now for Nature’ campaign led by Business for Nature coalition and PwC in support of halting and reversing biodiversity loss from 2030.
BP and Spotify bought carbon credits at risk of link to forced Uyghur labour in China
The Guardian, Patrick Greenfield, Amy Hawkins and Manisha Ganguly, 13 November
The Guardian covers new reports that BP and Spotify were among companies who bought carbon credits at risk of being implicated in potential Uyghur forced labour from a project focussed on a biomass power plant in Xinjiang, China, which said it would lower global carbon emissions by using waste cotton stalks from nearby fields to generate electricity. BBC shares that human rights lawyers claim Kenya’s government is illegally evicting hunter-gatherers from their ancestral lands to profit from carbon offsetting schemes. Fast Company reports on a new Ducks Unlimited carbon credit program that is paying landowners to permanently restore forest on more than 3,000 acres in the Mississippi Valley. Reuters reports on changes Verra is planning to make to improve its carbon credit programs. Bloomberg shares that South Pole’s CEO will be stepping down following months of allegations that the company overstated the climate impact of products that it sold.
Ecosystem Marketplace shares a commentary on the the important role of the voluntary carbon market to meet 2030 and 2050 climate goals. Emergent shares a post highlighting the role JREDD+ will play as a critical component of the global toolkit for forest climate solutions.
SPOTLIGHT – Introducing naturebase
Natural ecosystems are embedded into every aspect of our lives, but the crucial role that natural ecosystems play in helping regulate our climate is still not prioritized. Enter Nature4Climate’s naturebase: a new free data platform that turns peer-reviewed science into actionable information. The platform, available on a beta version from November 27, integrates an array of data and information acquired through various technologies, including satellite data analysis and land system modelling, as well as machine learning.
FOR YOUR INFORMATION
Nature publishes a study finding that the conservation, restoration and sustainable management of diverse forests offer valuable contributions to meeting global climate and biodiversity targets.
McKinsey & Company shares insights on catalyzing a sustainable land-use transition.
SPOTT releases research highlighting urgent need for stronger traceability in palm oil production, despite industry’s commitment to zero deforestation.
Amazonia 2030 publishes the book Amazonia 2030: the basis for sustainable development, as part of its goal to propose solutions to boost the economic, social and environmental development of the Brazilian Amazon.
CIFOR-ICRAF explains the Sustainable Wetlands Adaptation and Mitigation Program, which seeks to provide critical information on tropical wetland ecosystem values, how to more effectively conserve and restore them, and to increase awareness of the tremendous potential role these ecosystems can play in climate change mitigation and adaptation.
Alliance of Champions aims to transform food systems for people, nature, and climate by building a strategic coalition of ambitious countries determined to act urgently
Oxford Climate Tech Initiative, in partnership with Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship, publishes an overview of key trends, challenges and opportunities facing the climate tech field.
Chain Reaction Research calls for funders to support its activities investigating the tropical deforestation risk of commodities such as palm oil, soy, and beef. Reach out to email@example.com to learn more and discuss new opportunities.
VCMI launches the Early Adopters Program to accelerate uptake of the Claims Code of Practice, paving the way for corporates to confidently make VCMI Claims and celebrate credible climate action.
Mongabay launches a bilingual Africa news bureau to support reporting on wildlife conservation, development pressures, natural resource industries, and climate change impacts in Africa.
Nature Finance and Sustainability-linked Sovereign Debt Hub (SSDH) share a paper exploring innovative pathways and new revenue streams for debt-distressed Low-and Middle-Income Countries (LMICs) to leverage their renewable natural capital as a way of enhancing creditworthiness and improving their socio-economic development.
BusinessGreen announces the winners of the Earthshot Prize, which include recycled battery, conservation, and farming innovators.
SBTi calls for evidence on the effectiveness of the use of environmental attribute certificates.
European Environment Agency publishes a report highlighting the need to prioritize biomass uses due to different roles foreseen for biomass in the European Green Deal and due to potential shortage of biomass supply in the future.
GreenBiz releases a video with Charlotte Kaiser, Head of Impact Finance at BTG Pactual Timberland Investment Group, exploring BTG’s work in impact finance and investment opportunities.
It’s Now for Nature shares a Nature Strategy Handbook providing recommendations for all businesses on how to set a forward-looking nature strategy and where to find useful tools and resources.
World Economic Forum publishes a white paper in collaboration with Boston Consulting Group on the state of climate action. To stay below 1.5 degrees C, global emissions must decrease by around 7% annually until 2030, but they are still increasing by 1.5% today.
Wetlands International announces Systemiq’s new “Financial Roadmap for the Mangrove Breakthrough,” which offers in-depth analysis and detailed recommendations for using financial instruments in innovative and complementary ways.
Jurisdictional Approaches Resource Hub shares findings and recommendations from a 15-month study initiated to advance understanding of the use of landscape and jurisdictional approaches as a key corporate strategy for downstream and midstream companies to achieve sustainable sourcing and have positive impacts in the regions they are sourcing from.
Terraformation announces the progression of its first cohort of the Seed to Carbon Forest Accelerator to Phase 2, enabling forestry teams to begin pilot projects and set up vital infrastructure, such as nurseries and seed banks.
Ceres releases a report identifying critical ways food companies can drive agricultural innovation – both within their supply chains and sector wide – to meet ambitious climate targets outlined in their transition plans.
The Forest Plan shares its plan to end deforestation built upon the United Nations ‘Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation’ mechanism (REDD+).
Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) US publishes a report finding that FSC-certified forests in the US and Canada store more carbon when compared to forests managed with common practices, showing the positive climate impact of the forest management practices associated with FSC certification.
The Forest and Climate Leaders’ Partnership (FCLP) establishes an independent Advisory Group of external experts to provide advice and recommendations across the FCLP’s Action Areas. The group will be made up of individuals representing organizations or institutions that are independent of the FCLP member governments – including from civil society and non-governmental organizations, private sector groups, representatives of Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities, philanthropies, multilateral organizations, and the scientific community.
Environmental Defense Fund calls for a technical consultant to the Ghana National REDD+ Secretariat (NRS) to provide technical and management support.
BirdLife International joins the Island-Ocean Connection Challenge to restore, rewild and protect islands, oceans and communities.
WWF shares a discussion paper to present a comprehensive analysis of palm bioenergy, drawing from scientific studies, expert opinions, and stakeholder perspectives.
UN REDD shares the results of its learning lab and knowledge exchange with technical practitioners drawn from 10 African countries to equip practitioners with a comprehensive understanding of results-based finance.
WBCSD shares outcomes from its 2023 World Agrifood Innovation Conference, which brought together global leaders and entrepreneurs who committed to leading the agricultural and food industry towards a more sustainable future.
World Resources Institute announces that it will receive the 2023 GEO SDG Awards from the Group on Earth Observations (GEO) and the Earth Observations for Sustainable Development Goals Initiative (EO4SDG).
N4C is compiling an index of NBS case studies, together with an interactive map, to highlight action on the ground. Each week, we will be choosing a case study to present, to help give concrete examples of work being done to bring NBS theory into practice.
Mangroves restoration for livelihoods
WHERE: VANUA LEVU, FIJI
TYPE OF NCS SOLUTION: RESTORE
The Kiwa Institute’s mangrove restoration project aims to establish sustainable management of mangrove forests at three key sites in Vanua Levu, Fiji, alongside restoration, livelihood and awareness activities. The project is working to implement effective biodiversity management, sustainable mangrove restoration programs, and mangrove-related sustainable livelihoods.
NUMBER OF THE WEEK – 226 Gigatons
Restoring global forests where they occur naturally could potentially capture an additional 226 gigatons of planet-warming carbon, equivalent to about a third of the amount that humans have released since the beginning of the Industrial Era according to new Crowther Labs report.
Forest Trends and the Arbor Day Foundation will expand their partnership through a new initiative, the Arboredo Project, to strengthen Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) livelihoods and plant one million additional trees in Brazil’s Atlantic Rainforest. Brazil’s leaders have committed to restoring 12 million hectares (ha) of land by 2030. Brazil’s Atlantic Rainforest, a critical biodiversity hotspot that is home to 70 percent of the country’s population, offers tremendous potential to restore up to 17 million ha.