This is the first installment of WRI’s blog series, New Perspectives on Restoration. The series aims to share WRI’s views on restoration, dispel myths, and explore restoration opportunities throughout the world.
Almost half of the world’s original forests have been cleared or degraded. So naturally, most people think of the “forest restoration” movement as an effort to re-plant these lost trees.
By Chris Hufstader
After an audacious land grab by a foreign company, indigenous women in a remote Cambodian village struggle to regain their farms and sacred sites.
Sol Preng remembers vividly the day in 2012 when bulldozers unexpectedly arrived on her family farm.
“The company came and cleared away our cashew trees right before the harvest,” she says. “I lost four hectares of land and all my cashew trees.”
By Deborah Espinosa and Patrick Gallagher, USAID’s Land Technology Solutions Program
Persistent and pervasive gender inequality is a global development challenge that constrains economic growth, educational opportunities, and health outcomes. It jeopardizes food security and undermines poverty reduction strategies. The world over, some formal and many informal laws and customs operate to hinder women’s empowerment and thus their full potential as agents of economic and social change.
This week, more than 1,500 development professionals from around the world are gathering at the World Bank’s annual Land and Poverty Conference, discussing the latest research and innovations in policies and good practice on land governance.
Improving how we work for – and with – indigenous and local women in their communities
As a human rights organisation, gender justice is a fundamental principle of our work, and we have long been conscious of, and sought to address, the barriers to effective participation in decision-making by women, as well as the other human rights violations they may face on account of their gender.
Agriculture represents a key sector in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially when it comes to lifting close to a billion people out of rural poverty. We can’t ignore that many millions of poor households continue to depend primarily on farming.
Imagine a world where sustainable development is no longer an oxymoron, one where the Earth is economically and ecologically stable and food and energy needs are met. It’s a place where habitats are preserved and pollution is limited.
Don’t worry – you’re not alone if you can’t.
But according to a recent study published in The Ecological Society of America, this vision is not just imaginable, but it’s attainable. And by 2050 no less.
“Land for me is life.”
“It is everything, it is health, food security, and dignity.”
“It is life, overcoming adversity, and land security.”
“[Land for me is…] achievement and sustainability.”
“It is our home, where we raise our children, and where we preserve our culture.” – What does land mean for you? (2015)
The world would be a pretty dull and hungry place if it weren’t for Indigenous Peoples and local communities.
Indigenous Peoples and local communities play a central role in feeding the world. They look after much of the world’s biodiversity, with at least 80% of planet’s biodiversity found in Indigenous territories and waters. And they have an incredible track record of protecting the climate by preventing deforestation and properly managing pasturelands.
The debate on agriculture and development is heated and, apparently, never ending. This is especially true of the role and position of peasant (or smallholder) agriculture, with people either vigorously defending the sector or saying that in time it will (and should) disappear. Prof. Olivier de Schutter is a clear exponent of the former line of thought, as is evident from his contribution ‘We want peasants’ on Land Portal (26 September, 2018).