Natural Climate Solutions
Weekly Briefing

Welcome to Nature4Climate's Weekly Briefing. This weekly briefing summarises content from international media outlets (and our partner organisations) on stories, developments and events that relate to natural climate solutions. Our editorial policy is to circulate articles and opinion pieces whether we agree or disagree with viewpoints represented. In this new version, we feature the week's top NCS related news stories and analyse themes in coverage.

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A Nature-Positive Recovery for People, Economy & Climate Webinar
Investing in nature-based jobs and initiatives to stimulate the post-COVID economy

In association with the Planetary Emergency Partnership, the Club of Rome, and the World Economic Forum, Nature4Climate invites you to join the following webinar as part of London Climate Action Week 2020.

Our scientific understanding of nature’s role in the fight against climate change is now well established. So too is our understanding of the full range of benefits that nature-based solutions deliver for people around the world: whether providing jobs, filtering water, reducing air pollution, providing resilience to extreme weather or regulating local climate. 

However, the economic case for nature-based solutions remains poorly defined and understood. Join our online event to find out more about the vital role that nature-based solutions can play as part of just and effective economic and jobs stimulus packages.

July 1, 2020 - 10am-11am EST / 3pm-4pm BST / 4pm-5pm CET 

Speakers and Panellists:
  • Pavan Sukhdev, Founder-CEO of GIST, President of WWF-International, Study Leader of the TEEB project, Goodwill Ambassador of UNEP;
  • Jennifer Morris, CEO, The Nature Conservancy;
  • Carlos Manuel Rodriguez, Minister of Environment, Costa Rica;
  • Diane Holdorf, Managing Director of Food and Nature, WBCSD;
  • Mark Wishnie, Executive Director, BTG Pactual Timberland Investment Group;
  • Paul Mutuku, Africa Region Co-ordinator, Youth4Nature;
  • Moderator Justin Adams, Co-Director Nature-Based Solutions, World Economic Forum
Featured News
Climate change: Planting new forests 'can do more harm than good'
BBC, Matt McGrath, 22 June
BBC reports on two new studies that both caution against the presumed benefits of large scale tree planting. The first study found that financial incentives to plant trees "can backfire" by actually harming biodiversity and having little impact on emissions. The second study calls into question the carbon sequestration potential of new forests. The first looks closely at the example of Chile, and its decree from 1974 to 2012 that subsidised tree planting. "While it was intended not to apply to existing forests, lax enforcement and budgetary limitations meant that some landowners simply replaced native forests with more profitable new tree plantations. Their study found the subsidy scheme expanded the area covered by trees, but decreased the area of native forest." Bloomberg and i newspaper also cover the report, and an opinion piece by Ryan Cooper in The Week looks closer at the first study and concludes "it is generally wiser to simply protect and manage forests directly as wilderness lands rather than tying them into a marketplace for carbon offsets that shows little sign of ever working." The Conversation carries an article from researchers whose new study shows non-native trees decompose faster than native trees, accelerating the release of 150% more carbon dioxide from the soil.
'Grow back better': Wildlife and Countryside Link argues nature restoration can generate 25,000 jobs in aftermath of Covid-19
BusinessGreen, Cecilia Keating, 22 June
BusinessGreen shares a new report from Wildlife and Countryside Link showing 25,000 jobs could be created in the U.K. through nature restoration projects, with 10,000 jobs ready to be created in the short-term. (ITV also carries the story.) Meanwhile, The Guardian reports U.K. government ministers are preparing to receive bad news on climate progress from their advisers who are advocating more effort be put into initiatives like planting more trees and tying environmental requirements to corporate bailouts. In related news, CarbonBrief shares a new tracker of policies incentivising climate solutions as part of the response to the coronavirus economic downturn. Currently, there is only one established policy for agricultural and nature-based solutions, while most investments are focused on transportation and energy. BusinessGreen covers a report from the Aldersgate Group, an alliance of business leaders championing climate solutions, calling for the U.K. government to incentivise investment in nature restoration efforts alongside clean energy to reboot the economy and tackle the issues of climate change.
The Covid-19 pandemic is threatening vital rainforests
Vox, Umair Irfan, 22 June
Vox reports on the rise of deforestation in countries like Brazil and Indonesia as the world's attention is focused on responses to COVID-19. Attention drawn away from deforestation towards the coronavirus pandemic has proven a double-edged sword as the fires driving this deforestation could make the virus more deadly.
Agriculture secretary directs national forests be used for more mining, oil and gas
Axios, Orion Rummler, 12 June
Axios reports on a memo from the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture outlining a new direction for the U.S. Forest Service to focus on utilising national forests for mining, oil, and gas development projects. The HillBloomberg, and E&E News also carry the story. In other news from the U.S., The HillE&E News and others cover the passage of the Great American Outdoors Act in the Senate, which would secure $900 million in funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund and an additional $6.5 billion toward addressing a maintenance backlog at national U.S. parks. The bill now moves to the U.S. House, where it is not expected to meet much resistance. Finally, the TREE Act, which would direct $300 million annually to be spent planting trees in residential neighborhoods to reduce energy usage and improve public health, was introduced by Senators Cory Booker and Shelley Moore Capito.
Unilever lays out plans for €1 billion investment in climate and nature fund
CNBC, Anmar Frangoul, 15 June
CNBC reports that Unilever is launching a one billion euro fund to finance climate solutions including reforestation, water preservation, and carbon sequestration over the next ten years. Bloomberg reports that Unilever will also endeavor to include a carbon footprint label showing the greenhouse gas footprint of its products. Reuters also carries the story.
Land purchases by private companies accelerate tropical deforestation, data shows
CarbonBrief, Anastasia Moloney, 18 June
CarbonBrief shares the results of a new study that found land owned by private companies saw more deforestation across 80,000 land deals made from 2000 to 2018.
New platform is matchmaker for investors, planters to combat deforestation
Reuters, Anastasia Moloney, 18 June
Reuters covers the launch of TerraMatch, a new online platform connecting businesses and governments with companies providing nature-based solution projects like forest conservation or reforestation. 
Pandemics result from destruction of nature, say UN and WHO
The Guardian, Damian Carrington, 17 June
The Guardian shares a new report from the UN, WHO and WWF International stating that pandemics are growing increasingly more likely due to human encroachment into nature. euronews also carries the story.
Amazon Monitor

We've established a special section to highlight media coverage of deforestation in the Amazon, which continues to be a key media heme. Here you will find the week's top stories on deforestation, conservation efforts, and the politics of the region.

Reuters reports several European financial institutions -- controlling $2 trillion in assets --  are threatening to divest from beef, soy, and government bonds in Brazil if deforestation in the country is not brought under control (Bloomberg also carries the story).  A Tribuna NewsFolha de Dourados, Journal Dia Dia, and Amazonas Atual cover a report showing that the soy and beef companies these financiers are threatening to divest from are seeing risks of being tied to products developed on lands from fire-driven deforestation. Mongabay shares a new report showing 38 endangered Brazilian tree species prohibited from harvesting were traded between 2012 and 2016. Mongabay also writes how the continued legal and illegal deforestation of the Amazon is creating a public health nightmare for indigenous communities. Scientific American publishes an article connecting the dangers of COVID-19 with record-setting Amazonian fires for Brazil's indigenous communities. Vox also writes an article tying President's Bolsonaro's ambition for developing indigenous lands is leading to coronavirus outbreaks. The Guardian writes on the plight of indigenous peoples who are seeing cultural wealth decimated by the coronavirus that reached their communities through continued development in remote areas. An opinion letter in El Pais claims the deaths amongst Brazil's indigenous communities equate to the death of their futures. Reuters reports that Peruvian indigenous leaders have united to lobby political leaders to support a bill protecting the Amazon from oil exploration and development within their territories. 
€1 Billion

The investment Unilever has committed to over the next ten years to help combat climate change
Featured Commentary

Nature is everyone’s business: a call for collective action to reverse nature loss
World Economic Forum, Eva Zabey, 18 June
Eva Zabey, Executive Director of Business for Nature, pens a post for the World Economic Forum to call on other business leaders to join her coalition of 50 partners to prioritize nature's protection and restoration for economic growth and human prosperity.

Indigenous peoples guard 'the lungs of the planet' for all of us
Al Jazeera, Alnoor Ladha and Felipe Viveros, 15 June
With the Amazon close to a "tipping point", campaigners for human rights call upon world leaders to step in and protect indigenous Brazilians under siege from their government's destruction of the rainforest and COVID-19.

Let’s not forget biodiversity
EurActiv, Michel Derdevet, 22 June
Michel Derdevet, Vice-President of the Maison de l’Europe in Paris, challenges the European Commission to include biodiversity and nature in a more comprehensive approach to economic recovery than what is currently proposed.

The Lorax Loses at the Supreme Court
The Wall Street Journal, Editorial Board, 15 June
The Wall Street Journal's editorial board writes a tongue in cheek piece reprimanding conservationists' recent legal battle to halt a natural gas pipeline's development that would traverse underneath the famous Appalachian Trail.

Unlocking Nature’s Potential
SDG Knowledge Hub, Helen Finlay and Hugo Rosa Da Conceicao, 11 June
Global policy experts at CDP share three key efforts to make to capture nature's potential for companies around the world.

3 keys for scaling nature-based solutions for climate adaptation
GreenBiz, Jonathan Cook, 17 June
Jonathan Cook, Sr. Associate of the Global Commission On Adaptation at the World Resources Institute, shares three ways to boost nature-based solution efforts to protect nature and people.
NbS Digital Dialogues 

Hosted by the Nature-based Solutions Initiative, this online event will ask “What do we mean by successful, sustainable nature-based solutions?” and “How can we achieve this?”

Leaders from science, policy and practice will discuss the four key guidelines for NbS, and identify the most promising methods for financing and governing NbS. The role of NbS for COVID-19 recovery will be a cross-cutting theme. Learn more about the programme and register to attend.

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Media Round-Up

Natural Climate Solutions and Nature4Climate Partners

10 principles for a green recovery
Business Green, James Murray, 19 June

Nature for Life: 10 communities honored for local, innovative, nature-based solutions
Equator Initiative, June

More companies want to be “carbon neutral.” What does that mean?
Vox, Terry Nguyen, 16 June

Parks vs. People: In Guatemala, Communities Take Best Care of the Forest
Yale Environment 360, Fred Pearce, 18 June

Nature's 'lifeboats' of biodiversity can protect vulnerable species from climate change
Independent, Louise Boyle, 18 June

Use of forests to offset carbon emissions requires an understanding of the risks, Paul Gabrielsen, 18 June

Towards innovative, conflict-sensitive and human rights-based approaches to forest monitoring
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Nay Pyi Taw, 16 June

Half of Earth's Land Can Still Be Saved From Human Damage, Study Reveals
Science Alert, Peter Dockrill, 15 June


World Rainforest Day: The world’s great rainforests
Mongabay, Rhett A. Butler, 22 June

'A historic moment': PG&E pleads guilty to involuntary manslaughter, as judge plans to greenlight bankruptcy plan
Utility Dive, Kavya Balaraman, 17 June

U.N. charts new territory with project to track all Myanmar's forests
Reuters, Michael Taylor, 18 June

Palm oil from Indonesian grower that burned forest is still being sold
Mongabay, Hans Nicholas Jong, 19 June

Indonesia’s $300m geothermal play risks being undercut by cheap coal
Mongabay, Basten Gokkon, 19 June

Environmentalists raise concerns over coal mining in 'no go' zones, call the move a recipe fr ecological disaster
Times of India, Vishwa Mohan, 19 June

Indonesian court jails indigenous farmers for ‘stealing’ from land they claim
Mongabay, Hans Nicholas Jong, 23 June

The Chain: Neste Oyj’s Updated Dashboard Reveals the Company Remains Linked to Deforestation
Chain Reaction Research, 19 June

Chinese companies urged to ramp up actions to decouple deforestation risks across the palm oil value chains
CDP, 23 June

Concerned for the future, indigenous Nicaraguans lament lost habitats
Mongabay, Sandra Cuffe, 16 June

The Chain: Pressure Grows on Traders, Investors to Take Action on Cerrado Deforestation at SLC Agrícola Farms
Chain Reaction Research, 18 June

India eyes private investment to open 41 new coal mines
Climate Change News,  Chloé Farand, 19 June


Europe struggles to seed the forest for the trees
Politico, Kalina Oroschakoff, 20 June

Central Highlands targets 49.2 percent in forest coverage in 2030
Vietnam Plus, 22 June

Branching out: Defra seeks input on how to boost England tree cover
Business Green, 19 June

World Day to Combat Desertification: 11.5 million trees planted since January
DZ Breaking, Hana Saada, 19 June

Sustainable Forestry

Timber company pours $5m into production as restructuring plans take shape
BDaily News, Chloe Shakesby, 19 June

New approach to sustainable building takes shape in Boston
The Institution of Engineers Singapore, June

Negative Emissions Technologies

DOE Invests $17 Million to Advance Carbon Utilization Projects
Department of Energy, 16 June

'Future is here': National lab touts CO2 recycling advance
E&E News, John Fialka, 23 June

How Iceland is undoing carbon emissions for good
BBC, Lowana Veal, 16 June

Norway to welcome ‘world’s first large-scale carbon capture plant at a cement factory’
Energy Live News, Dimitris Mavrokefalidis, 17 June

New Record for Carbon Dioxide Capture Set Using Metal Organic Frameworks
SciTech Daily, Monash University, 18 June

Carbon Capture Will Require Large Public Subsidies to Support Coal and Gas Power
Desmog, Justin Mikulka, 15 June

Agriculture and Soil Health

Beef farmers are the new coal miners
Politico, Eddy Wax and Zosia Wanat, 19 June

Lawmakers to review agriculture carbon markets bill
E&E News, Marc Heller, 22 June

FAO seeks new approach to combat 2 billion-hectare land degradation globally
Voice of Nigeria, 19 June

Cabernet With a Side of Carbon
Slate, Mallory Pickett, 18 June

Emissions from 13 dairy firms match those of entire UK, says report
The Guardian, Damian Carrington, 15 June


Mangrove collapse ‘inevitable’ unless emissions curbed
Mongabay, Lauren Crothers, 18 June

Indonesia struggles to restore peatlands as fires strangle national parks
Mongabay, Shreya Dasgupta, 17 June

Threatened mangrove forests won’t protect coasts
Eco-Business, Tim Radford, 18 June

The survival of mangroves, the Growing Climate Solutions Act, Swiss Re eyes carbon capture, & a Microsoft update
Nori, 12 June

New Science, Research, Policy and Tools

Impacts of Chilean forest subsidies on forest cover, carbon and biodiversity
Nature, June 2020
An econometric land use change model study to simulate the carbon and biodiversity impacts of subsidy driven plantation expansion in Chile between 1986 and 2011 found Chile’s forest subsidies probably decreased biodiversity without increasing total carbon stored in aboveground biomass.

Scientists propose new species extinction target
UN Environment Programme, 2020
This paper suggests that the upcoming future strategy for conserving biodiversity should include a long-term goal to reduce species extinctions towards natural rates, with an objective of fewer than 20 extinctions a year.

Tropical forest loss enhanced by large-scale land acquisitions

Nature, June 2020
Large-scale land acquisitions have emerged as an important mechanism linking global resource demands to forests in the Global South, yet their influence on tropical deforestation remains unclear. This report demonstrate that large-scale land acquisitions can lead to elevated deforestation of tropical forests, highlighting the role of local policies in the sustainable management of these ecosystems.

Mapping the Progress and Potential of Carbon Capture, Use, and Storage

Third Way, June 2020
A new version of Third Way's map of newly conceived and developed CCUS projects.

The Impact of Low-Carbon Service Operations on Responsible Tourist Behavior: The Psychological Processes of Sustainable Cultural Tourism
Sustainability, June 2020
This paper explores the impact of low-carbon service operations on responsible tourist behavior within sustainable cultural tourism. A proposed conceptual framework is used to examine this largely ignored situation through the case study of Xiao Liuqiu Island.

Operationalising and Scaling Post-2020 Voluntary Carbon Market

Gold Standard, June 2020
This document sets out Gold Standard’s intended policy and approach to carbon markets post-2020.

Forest Methodology: Assessing the greenhouse gas impacts of forest policies

Initiative for Climate Action Transparency, 2020
Methodological guidance for assessing the GHG impacts of forest policies that increase carbon sequestration and reduce GHG emissions through forest-based solutions.

Agriculture Guidance: Guidance for assessing the greenhouse gas impacts of agriculture policies

Initiative for Climate Action Transparency, 2020
This document provides methodological guidance for assessing the GHG impacts of agriculture policies that enable or incentivise mitigation practices or technologies that reduce emissions from enteric fermentation and increase soil carbon sequestration in pasture, grazing lands and croplands. 

COVID19: Urgent Call to Protect People and Nature

World Wildlife Fund, June 2020
WWF report showing the connection between zoonotic diseases and natural habitat destruction, and advocating for a nature-based economic recovery.

Peeling Back The Bark: Timber Tracking and Regulations Controlling the Peruvian Forest Supply Chain

Forest Trends, June 2020
This report contains an overview of the Peruvian timber supply chain, its legal and regulatory framework, and the guidance and tools that have been established to ensure its legality.

Keeping pace with climate change in global terrestrial protected areas

Science Advances, June 2020
Protected areas (PAs) are essential to biodiversity conservation, but their static boundaries may undermine their potential for protecting species under climate change. This is an assessment of how the climatic conditions within global terrestrial PAs may change over time.

The Performance of REDD+: From Global Governance to Local Practices
Forests, June 2020
A new book reviewing the performance of REDD+ efforts.

Responsibilization and state territorialization: Governing socio-territorial conflicts in community forestry in Mexico

Forest Policy and Economics, June 2020
This article examines the limitations of these approaches in contexts of ambiguous collective property rights and protracted inter-community socio-territorial conflicts, pointing to the responsibilization mechanisms that emerge and their consequences.


Our Village Virtual Summit
Dates: 23-26 June
Host: If Not Us Then Who?

WEBINAR: Advanced biofuels: What holds them back?
Date: 23 June
Host: International Renewable Energy Agency

WEBINAR: COVID-19’s effects on deforestation and possible responses through strengthening legality and sustainability
Date: 24 June
Host: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United States

WEBINAR: Rainforest Alliance Sustainability Summit Series: Building the Resilience of Producers in Global Supply Chains
Date: 24 June
Host: Rainforest Alliance

WEBINAR: Community Forest Enterprises and FSC Tropical Timber
Date: 24 June
Host: Rainforest Alliance

WEBINAR: Webinar on digitizing MRV for public policies in the land use sector
Date: 25 June
Host: Climate Ledger Initiative

WEBINAR: Unlocking billions in sustainable finance
Date: 25 June
Hosts: CGIAR and CCAFS

WEBINAR: An Intergenerational Approach to Nature-Based Solutions: Embracing All Our Efforts on Implementation
Date: 26 June
Host: Youth4Nature

WEBINAR: Voices from Origin: Advocating for Sustainability in Central America
Date: 29 June
Host: Rainforest Alliance

WEBINAR: Webinar on reducing overselling risks under Article 6 - practical strategies for transferring and acquiring countries
Date: 29 June
Host: The Swedish Energy Agency, Carbon Limits, INFRAS, SEI and Oeko Institute

WEBINAR: Investor Guide to Deforestation and Climate Change 
Date: 29 June
Host: Ceres

WEBINAR: Our Forests Under Threat: Protecting Forests for Sustainable Livelihoods
Date: 30 June
Host: FAO and National Geographic

WEBINAR: Everland Presents: REDD+, A Force of Nature 
Date: 30 June
Host: Everland

VIRTUAL EVENT: Upholding Rights in Jurisdictional Approaches – some emerging lessons
Date: 30 June
Host: Tropical Forest Alliance

VIRTUAL EVENT: Climate Innovation Virtual Forum
Date: 1 July
Host: Climate Innovation Virtual Forum

WEBINAR: Climate Change and Animal Agriculture: Breaking the Link
Date: 1 July
Host: FAIRR Initiative

WEBINAR: Taking the Carbon out of Credit
Date: 2 July
Host: Climate Safe Lending Network

WEBINAR: Carbon Markets & Finance to Support Risk Management and Build Resilience
Date: 2 July
Host: International Emissions Trading Association - IETA

WEBINAR: Strategic Climate Litigation: Insights from Global Experience
Date: 3 July
Host: Granthan Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment, London School of Economics

WEBINAR: Kick-off webinar - Introducing nature-based solutions and UrbanByNature in the Caucasus
Date: 10 July
Host: UrbanByNature

Please reach out with any feedback or thoughts on this version of the newsletter. If you want to be removed from the distribution list, please use the unsubscribe link below. Please join the conversation #NatureNow @nature4climate or get in touch.

Lucy Almond, Director and Chair of Nature4Climate
Copyright © 2020 Nature4Climate, All rights reserved.

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