THIRD WORLD NETWORK INFORMATION SERVICE ON SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE
Dear Friends and Colleagues
How Community-Based Biodiversity-Friendly Farming Can Stem Biodiversity Loss
The alarming loss of biodiversity has been described as a “silent killer”. A new report showcases 338 community-based solutions from over 75 countries across 6 continents to help farmers and other agricultural practitioners adopt ecologically-friendly practices that protect soils, water, forests, and fish stocks. About 85% came from developing countries.
The report shows how smallholder farmers are nourishing communities the world over and that the innovative solutions they apply can also be replicable, while demonstrating that communities are at the heart of biodiversity protection and sustainable use of its resources. The Post-2020 global biodiversity framework could thus benefit from increased attention to community-based solutions. The report further shows the close relationship and interdependency between biodiversity and the Sustainable Development Goals.
The report identifies “steps to success” that are common across the 338 solutions and correspond with the current Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Strategic Goals. The steps include:
- Transforming attitudes towards nature by boosting social awareness and behavior change
- Tailoring initiatives to ecological and economic contexts
- Identifying and strengthening local champions of biodiversity
- Setting incentives and economic returns to create win/wins
- Creating spaces and support for bottom-up community engagement
The report also identifies recommendations to funding partners, policy makers, researchers and program planners focused on removing barriers to community engagement in sustainable farming solutions as well as providing enabling governance framework and funding structures.
With best wishes
Third World Network
131 Jalan Macalister
Websites: http://www.twn.my/and http://www.biosafety-info.net/
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FARMING FOR BIODIVERSITY PROVEN SOLUTIONS MEET GLOBAL POLICY
Analysis report based on a worldwide Solution Search
Gwinner, V. & Neureuther, A.
FARMING FOR BIODIVERSITY – LESSONS LEARNED REPORT
The Convention on Biological Diversity’s Executive Secretary Cristiana Pasca-Palmer describes the loss of biodiversity as a “silent killer”. For many of us, the loss may not feel immediately palpable in everyday life. By the time we feel what’s happening and recognize the changing face of the Earth, it may be too late.
There is still hope for preserving what’s left of the world’s rich diversity of life. Producers and consumers that adopt and spur demand for sustainable farming practices — such as those that protect soils, water, forests, and fish stocks — play a key role in stopping biodiversity loss. But too often, these innovative actors and their solutions operate unseen and unheard — silent, like the issue they face. We must, then, be willing to search for them.
As part of a global initiative, Solution Search: Farming for Biodiversity set out in 2017 to identify, reward and spotlight the people and approaches that have successfully driven the adoption of biodiversity-friendly agriculture. Initially aiming for 100 submissions, the contest’s 26 partner organizations unearthed 338 proven solutions.
The solutions came from a diversity of sources, ranging from established international research institutions to young scientists testing a proof of concept, from private companies to community led initiatives, and from foundations to family-run projects. The six winners of the contest (pages 9-10) exemplify this diversity.
The solutions not only showcase biodiversity-friendly farming approaches that work on the ground, but also point to valuable lessons for the global policy frameworks needed to protect our shared environment.
While solutions vary in approach and scale, this report identifies “steps to success” that are common to all of them and correspond with the current Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Strategic Goals:
- Transforming public thinking, attitudes and policies combined with behavioral insights to change people’s practice is crucial for achieving Goal A – Mainstreaming biodiversity across government and society (pages 18-20)
- To reduce direct pressures on biodiversity (Goal B), local solutions suited to ecological and economic contexts are most successful (pages 20-22)
- Identifying and working with biodiversity champions is key to CBD Goal C – the safeguarding of ecosystems, species and genetic diversity (pages 22-24)
- Setting incentives and economic returns for farming communities is crucial for Goal D – enhancing the benefits of biodiversity and ecosystem services for all (pages 24-26)
- Creating spaces and support for bottom-up community engagement is fundamental to enhancing implementation (CBD Goal E, pages 26-28)
This shows that communities – be they producer or consumer communities – are at the heart of biodiversity protection and sustainable use of its resources. Efforts to stop biodiversity loss should seek to strengthen and support the positive potential of community involvement, underpinned by a better understanding of what motivates human behavior and decision-making.
The Post-2020 global biodiversity framework could therefore benefit from increased attention to communities and behavior insights. Using proven solutions as case studies, the report further shows the close relation and interdependency between biodiversity and the Sustainable Development Goals.
The final section of the report (pages 30-32) identifies recommendations for funding partners, policymakers, researchers and program planners focused on removing barriers to community engagement in sustainable farming solutions as well as providing enabling governance framework and funding structures.