Trees as nexus for Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s): agroforestry for integrated options


Since the 1972 Stockholm and 1992 Rio meetings, the need for reorienting global development has been debated and agreed in 2012 in Rio+20. Current growth with GDP (gross domestic product) as primary metric does not take into account the destruction of natural capital and the social equity aspects. The ‘five capitals’ view brings human, social and natural capitals into focus, beyond finance and infrastructure. The eight Millennium Development Goals (pre-2015) worked for health, gender and education aspects, but failed to deliver on sustainability; the goals were not integrated with climate issues, and the goal of containing anthropogenic climate change was missed, making costly adaptation unavoidable. The 17 post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals combine the unfinished MDG agenda with a re-enforcement of climate and biodiversity conventions and lessons learned on policy effectiveness. We reviewed the evidence on tropical land use in the light of these SDG’s, focusing on tradeoffs among the SDG’s as currently framed, and the opportunity that a more holistic land use perspective, as in agroforestry, can bring.

van Noordwijk, M.; Mbow, C.; Minang, P.A.;
Publications Details
Publication Type: Policy Brief
Year Published: 2015