Natural Climate Solutions
Welcome to the new format for the Nature4Climate Weekly Briefing. This weekly newsletter summarises content from international media outlets (and our partner organisations) on stories, developments and events that relate to nature-based solutions to climate. 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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IMAGE OF THE WEEK
The coronavirus has dominated the media landscape and caused the cancellation of numerous climate change-focused activities including UNFCCC meetings through April.
How Coronavirus Could Set Back the Fight Against Climate Change
TIME, Justin Worland, 10 March
As you’re reviewing the newsletter below, for perspective’s sake it’s important to keep in mind that coronavirus is dominating global media cycles. To give but a small sample, relevant here: TIME magazine shares the rising concerns that the onset of the COVID-19 Pandemic will ruin the chances of a ‘2020 Super Year’ for climate action. E&E News reports on the delays occurring in mobilising climate action with the UN canceling many major events. Inside Climate News writes on the potential bounceback of emissions after the initial outbreak of the virus has run its course. In Forbes, contributor Mike Scott writes about the need for the business community to not let nature be forgotten as an issue to fix in the rush to respond to the disease. E&E News also covers the attempts of U.S. Democrats to ensure any stimulus funding to quell the virus’ recession is focused on a clean economy.
A BBC Double Feature
BBC dives into the challenges and feasibility of planting millions of trees to combat climate change. BBC also interviews the Nature Conservancy's Deborah Bossio on new research showing soil restoration could net 5.5 billion tonnes of carbon sequestration per year.
Amazon rainforest 'faces collapse within 50 years' as humanity warned to prepare
The Mirror, by Nada Farhoud, 10 March
The Mirror covers new scientific research suggesting that large ecosystems like the Amazon rainforest and Caribbean coral reefs could degrade to the point of no return within a few decades. In Nature Communications the researchers share their findings and the implications for society in the effort to save these ecosystems. The Sunday Times, The Independent, The Guardian, and Reuters also cover the story.
Budget: missed chance to lead on climate crisis
The Guardian, by Fiona Harvey, 11 March
The Guardian reports on the criticism the UK government is receiving from environmentalists for not putting forward a “bold enough” plan to revitalise nature and address climate change. Edie shares a more positive spin by highlighting that the rate of tree planting “should” increase by 600% under the new budget. BBC also writes on responses to the budget showing the spectrum of responses to it’s ambition. Carbon Brief shares a breakdown of the distribution of funds across different sectors focused on climate change including nature. The budget and ensuing criticism comes on the heels of a new government report the BBC covers that shows the UK is not on the path to go carbon-neutral by 2050.
|Conservation International Releases Request for NCS Projects/Concepts: To be Supported by Market Innovations
Link to RFP can be found here. Review and share amongst your networks looking to gain support for their NCS initiatives.
STAT OF THE WEEK
The number of years left before the Amazon rainforest and other major biomes have before they are unrecognizable if society doesn't take adequate measures to protect them.
Von der Leyen’s first 100 days: Are Europe’s forests – and the climate – in good hands?
Euractiv, by Hannah Mowat, 10 March
Campaigns coordinator Hannah Mowat of Fern, a forest NGO, calls into question if the new European Commission President is fulfilling her potential to protect global forests. From lack of ambition in the March 4th plan put forward by the European Commission to the lack of specifics on support for nature and biodiversity, Mowat asks if her legacy will be climate-friendly or passive.
Now or Never for Saving Our Natural World
Project Syndicate, by Enric Sala, 9 March
The Explorer at Residence for National Geographic shares a letter calling for the Global Deal for Nature where 30% of the world would be conserved by 2030, and 50% by 2050. Sala provides evidence that humanity can make this work with improved agricultural production and that not achieving this goal would lead to existential crises for society.
Oil and gas project threatens Brazil’s last great block of Amazon forest
Mongabay, by Philip Fearnside, 9 March
A biologist tells of a new threat to the still pristine western portion of the Amazon rainforest: the Solimões oil and gas project that would implant thousands of wells spread over the central and southern portions of this forest block. The fight against the project and the network of roads it would develop creating easier access for deforestation is just beginning.
We can build new climate consensus out of wood
The Hill, by Jad Daley, 15 March
The president and CEO of American Forests shares his vision for building greater bipartisan support on climate action utilizing forests as an important part of the overall suite of solutions.
Natural Climate Solutions and Nature4Climate Partners
Restoring soils could remove up to ‘5.5bn tonnes’ of greenhouse gases every year
Carbon Brief, by Daisy Dunne, 16 March
UN aviation agency agrees to restrict carbon credits denounced by climate activists
Reuters, by Allison Lampert, 13 March
More companies want to be “carbon neutral.” What does that mean?
Vox, by Terry Nguyen, 5 March
Vietnam’s new conservation plan prioritizes trees and people. Emissions? Not so much
Mongabay, by Carol J. Clouse on 13 March
Want To Understand Carbon Credits? Read This
Forbes, by Eric Kobayashi-Solomon, 13 March
Amazon deforestation looks set to hit a record high in 2020
New Scientist, by Adam Vaughan, 13 March
Amazon rainforest reaches point of no return
Climate News Network, by Jessica Rawnsley, 16 March
'Project of death': alarm at Bolsonaro's plan for Amazon-spanning bridge
The Guardian, by Dom Phillips, 10 March
Planned Amazon roads could harm economies not just forests, researchers warn
Thomson Reuters Foundation, by Anastasia Moloney, 17 March
The race to save Polesia, Europe's secret Amazon
The Guardian, by Phoebe Weston, 6 March
Record-high global tree cover loss driven by agriculture
Mongabay, by Liz Kimbrough, 10 March
Pandemics – another reason to stop financing deforestation and climate change
Euromoney, by Helen Avery, 11 March
Tendrils of hope amid huge setbacks for sustainable soy in Brazil
Ethical Corporation, by Mark Hillsdon, 7 March
Alaska judge stalls logging in Tongass National Forest
TheHill, by Rebecca Beitsch, 12 March
War or peace? A threatened Brazilian indigenous tribe weighs its options
Reuters, by Fabio Teixeira, 9 March
Denmark to help reforestation efforts in Myanmar
Myanmar Times, by Myat Moe Aung, 9 March
Brazil drastically reduces controls over suspicious Amazon timber exports
Mongabay, by Thais Borges and Sue Branford, 11 March
PepsiCo renews sustainable palm oil policy to close supplier loophole
Mongabay, by Hans Nicholas Jong, 11 March
‘Extreme poverty still fuelling deforestation from cocoa in West Africa’
Ethical Corporation, by Terry Slavin, 10 March
Mike Braun to sponsor 'Trillion Trees' bill in Senate
E&E News, by Nick Sobczyk, 11 March
Madagascar: 60 Million Trees to be Planted for 60 Years of Independence
The North Africa Post, 16 March
Forest cover grows in Cuba
Prensa Latina, 16 March
This tree survived the last ice age, but now its future hangs in the balance
CNN, by Jo Munnik, 13 March
Deforestation: Plateau state to reintroduce annual tree planting
Voice of Nigeria, 13 March
Wales launches £5m national forest scheme – with pupils' help
The Guardian, by Steven Morris, 12 March
The FNC contributes first 240,000 trees to Colombia’s national reforestation goal
International Communicaffe, 12 March
Trees on commercial UK plantations 'not helping climate crisis'
The Guardian, by Patrick Barkham, 10 March
Agriculture and Soil Health
Move with the times: carbon farming is primary production
Farm Weekly, by Shan Goodwin, 6 March
The Netherlands supports Indonesia in sustainable palm oil
Antara News, by Sella P and Azis Kurmala, 10 March
‘With the right incentives we could double soy production without felling another tree’
Ethical Corporation, by Mark Hillsdon, 7 March
Mapping the ability of tea gardens to sequester carbon dioxide
Mongabay, by Sahana Ghosh, 12 March
Happy Microbes, Healthy Soil
Technology Networks, by Susan V. Fisk, 12 March
Daigneault to Put Forests, Farms to Work Reducing Greenhouse Gases
GrowingAmerica, 17 March
Young California Ranchers Are Finding New Ways to Raise Livestock and Improve the Land
The Good Men Project, by Kate Munden-Dixon and Leslie Roche, 10 March
The secret to sustainably farming the Amazon? The ‘miracle’ Inga tree.
Christian Science Monitor, by Sara Miller Llana, 10 March
Negative Emissions Technologies
Sci-fi tech tackles climate change with fake trees
Fortune, by Jennifer Alsever, 16 March
Research shows mangrove conservation can pay for itself in flood protection
Phys.Org, 10 March
Climate change: Carbon-reducing seagrass planted off Welsh coast
BBC, 10 March
New Science, Research, Policy and Tools
The viability and desirability of replacing palm oil
Nature Sustainability, March
Expansion of palm oil cultivation has led to substantial increases in greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity loss from carbon-rich tropical forest. Because of this, there is increased focus on replacement of palm oil in industrial and consumer products. This study reviews different alternatives from a technical, environmental and economic perspective.
Smaller Tropical Forest Fragments Vanish Faster Than Larger Forest Blocks
Eurasia Review, March
In one of the first studies to explicitly account for fragmentation in tropical forests, researchers report that smaller fragments of old-growth forests and protected areas experienced greater losses than larger fragments, between 2001 and 2018.
Biofuels add fuel to forest fires
Rainforest Foundation Norway, March
A new report looks at the impact of global biofuel policies on tropical deforestation. Palm oil and soy, in particular, are biofuel feedstocks that are associated with high deforestation risk. The report analyses biofuel policies in all key markets and assesses the impact on demand for palm oil and soy-based biofuels in the coming decade.
(On Watch Due to Coronavirus)
World Bank Land and Poverty Conference 2020
CERES - 2020 in New York
Dates: 23-27 March
Location: NOW A DIGITAL EVENT
WEBINAR: Introduction to CDP Forests disclosure
Date: 24 March
Sustainability Summit 2020
WEBINAR: Payments for Ecosystem Services to support Forest and Landscape Restoration
Date: 26 March
International Conference on Human-Wildlife Conflict and Coexistence
Location: Oxford, UK
Africa Climate Week 2020
Location: Kampala, Uganda
Earth Optimism Summit
Dates: 23-26 April
Location: NOW A DIGITAL EVENT
The Tree Conference
Dates: 2 May
Location: Cambridge, UK
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Lucy Almond, Director and Chair of Nature4Climate