Context & Opportunity
Restoration can play an important role in addressing the challenges of biodiversity loss, land degradation and climate change while supporting ecosystem services and improving overall human well-being. Restoration at scale can help countries in meeting their various national and international commitments under the Rio Conventions, while contributing towards the ambitious global goals under the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration. However, several barriers are presently hampering our ability to carry out restoration at scale. Researchers (Cortina-Segarra et al. 2021) have identified the three primary barriers to scaling up restoration in Europe: funding, conflicting stakeholder interests, and the absence of an enabling policy environment that prioritizes restoration.
To address these key barriers, this project implemented by the consortium comprising of UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC), BirdLife International and the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) aims to convene activities focused on stakeholder engagement, unlocking funding for restoration, and creating an enabling policy environment for restoration. This would build on learnings coming out of Endangered Landscapes & Seascapes Programme grantees and landscapes as well as Cambridge Conservation Initiative partners.
Under the project, two taskforces will be set up to address the specific topics of unlocking funding for restoration (led by UNEP-WCMC) and stakeholder engagement (led by BirdLife). Both taskforces will address the cross-cutting theme of enabling policy environment for restoration. The taskforces will comprise of relevant Cambridge Conservation Initiative partners and Endangered Landscapes & Seascapes Programme grantees, alongside a group of key experts who will be invited to inform, review and guide the activities and outputs of the taskforces. The project will also set up a Cambridge Conservation Initiative community of practice focussed on restoration. A communications package will be co-produced at the end of the project with relevant stakeholders and experts to ensure dissemination and uptake of the project findings across key target audiences.
The project aims to strengthen the dialogue between the various sectoral actors needed to ensure successful scaled-up restoration, such as the conservation community, restoration practitioners, local communities, the finance sector, and policymakers, to jointly identify solutions to overcome the main barriers to successful restoration across Europe.
The project hopes to contribute to the following impact:
- More landscapes in Europe and beyond are restored in an increasingly efficient, collaborative, impactful and fair way, delivering benefits for people and for nature.
This will be achieved through the project outcomes which include creating solutions to strengthen stakeholder engagement and mitigate conflicts in restoration, solutions to unlock funding for restoration and manage associated risks, and strategies for achieving an enabling policy environment for restoration. The project has a strong communication package and strategy to ensure that the findings are disseminated across all relevant sectoral actors.