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For Immediate Release
How viable is a Landscape Approach: Lessons and Recommendations
Discussions on climate change are
increasingly pointing to a landscape approach as the next best alternative or
compliment to REDD+ whose takeoff has been hampered by challenges drawn mainly
from the initiatives narrow focus on forests. However, there still remains need
for clarity on definition and feasibility of the Landscape approach concept.
To provide evidence that adds to the
body of knowledge to understand and implement the concept, ASB Partnership for
the Tropical Forest Margins at the World Agroforestry Centre has released a new
report based on landscape approach pilot studies conducted in four continents
across the tropics in Cameroon, Peru, Indonesia and Vietnam over a period of
Understanding the Landscape Approach
According to the report, “Landscapes
represent complex systems with sets of social, biophysical, human ecological
and economic dimensions that interact with each other. Such interactions happen
at multiple levels -the plot, farm, field levels and beyond. Integration
enables understanding of such cross-scale interactions which determine numerous
landscape-level patterns and changes. Understanding and building on
interactions and feedback loops is thus important for success.”
The project further considered key
operational concepts for landscape approaches that include heterogeneity,
integration and interactions, multifunctionality, synergy and scale.
Lessons and recommendations on implementation
Lessons and recommendations below are drawn from an analysis of
landscape approach feasibility studies in the four countries that in a
participatory way looked at potential for emission reduction from all land uses
including peatlands; financial & non-financial emission reduction
incentives needed at landscape level; enabling conditions for effective
landscape-based strategies; as well as methodology and tools for implementing
and collaborating with the various stakeholders and institutions across scales.
“One important tool generated by the
project that has been recommended for use by the Indonesia government for local
governments to plan their actions to reduce GHG for entire provinces in Indonesia
is the Land Use Planning for Low Emission
Development Strategy (LUWES) which helps to explore land use options for
supporting low carbon intensive development,” explains Florence Bernard,
Associate Scientist at ASB Partnership for the tropical Forest Margins.
targeting non-forest high carbon stock land uses such as agroforestry,
tree-based systems and peatlands were found to be attractive, potentially
effective and efficient options for achieving REDD+, global climate change
objectives and promoting sustainable livelihoods
Further linkage of REDD+
discussions in the international arena with the emerging Nationally
Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs) framing is needed to create rules and
incentives for landscape approaches and investments.
Success in emissions
reduction initiatives will need entry points beyond a sole emissions
reduction focus given that carbon and its associated finance is unlikely to
be a priority concern for local stakeholders
Emissions reduction planning
and implementation needs to be integrated into the wider development
aspirations of stakeholders if it is to succeed
Landscape approaches would
benefit from greater effectiveness and efficiency when synergy is sought
between emission reductions and other environmental, social and economic
objectives including climate change adaptation and green economy approaches.
co-investment approach is emerging as a necessary condition for achieving
multiple landscape-level objectives
Key frameworks and models
should be developed to enable better private sector involvement (financing
and sharing of technical expertise) in emission reductions and sustainable
development schemes at the landscape level. This could allow and involve
innovative financial mechanisms for public and private investments. Such a
mechanism could allow integration and optimization between currently
separated mitigation and adaptation funding streams for example.
and jurisdictional approaches to emissions reduction can be complementary
Better research is required
to understand and identify potential options for landscapes and
jurisdictional interactions under different political economy contexts.
REDD+ readiness (and indeed
future climate change readiness –NAMA, climate smart agriculture and others)
needs to invest more in sub-national level REDD+ designs in order to enable
landscape approaches for emissions reduction to thrive. Current readiness
focuses more on international accountability structures and national levels,
which does not automatically translate to a nested-systems architecture
required to address drivers of deforestation at the landscape level.
landscapes to the national level is a necessary condition for success and
Rules and guidance for
nesting landscapes to the national level are needed. These could include
specifying among others issues related to ownership rights to carbon, duties
and royalties to be paid on investments, crediting, distribution of national
emission targets, benefit sharing, risk management, MRV and baselines.
and understanding leverage points and potential levers of emissions beyond
landscape boundaries is necessary to address drivers effectively.
The design and use of
approaches that aim at identifying leverage points and levers for addressing
drivers, as opposed to the current identification of land uses responsible
for most conversions and a description of the processes, is needed.
The report is attached and can also
be downloaded here: Towards
a Landscape Approach for Reducing Emissions: A Substantive Report of the
Reducing Emissions from All Land Uses (REALU) Project