Commonland:
Annual Report 2019

Bringing a holistic approach to landscape restoration
based on business cases

Dirty Clean Food brand launched

Wide Open Agriculture (WOA) launched its new food brand Dirty Clean Food together with a direct-to-consumer online sales platform for products grown by farmers who are committed to regenerative farming practices. The platform connects farmers who produce food using holistic and regenerative methods with restaurant, retail and online consumers. Total sales of $490,000 were achieved in the second half of 2019 (June to December).

read more

4 Returns business model attracts national attention in Spain (article El País)

“We needed AlVelAl –this is really «the rain in May»”

Environmentalist Belén Sánchez told El País in an article on how AlVelAl’s farmers are stopping the desert.

The expression ‘like the rain in May’ is a campesino (country-side) one referring to the fundamental need of water in the spring, particularly April and May, to water the growing crops and to allow them to flourish. It means something is needed, is highly appreciated, and has come just in time.

“The aim is to empower rural people so they can take charge of their own destinies in a region that is socially and economically challenged” – Astrid Vargas, conservationist

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First harvest of Honeybush in the Langkloof and 93 ha of hillside rehabilitation in Baviaanskloof.

As part of a process to sustainably produce honeybush tea, the development of ‘Sustainable Harvest Plans’ for landowners has taken forward ‘research-based’ knowledge to become more ‘practically implementable’. With funds from Commonland and Stichting DOEN, 660 ha of land have been surveyed to determine the sustainable amount of honeybush that can be harvested. The plans also include wider-scale issues such as mapping alien invasive trees, which harms natural honeybush resources in the long-term.

Also, 93 hectares of hillside has been rehabilitated in the Baviaanskloof with hydrological improvement ponds, spekboom plantings, and alien tree removal.

read more

Pilot initiative Boeren van Amstel (Farmers of Amstel) entered the market.

2019 was also the year of the introduction of new business cases that were supported by Wij.land. The Boeren van Amstel (farmers of Amstel) dairy was introduced in local supermarkets.

read more

What are the 4 Returns?

Inspiration

Giving people hope and a sense of purpose.

Natural
Capital

Restoring biodiversity, soil, water quality and capturing carbon.

Financial
Capital

Realising long-term sustainable profit.

4 Returns impacts

People exposed
to the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration
Direct and indirect jobs created and supported
Hectares under direct regeneration/restoration with early ripple effects to 2 million hectares across 4 landscapes
4 returns business cases identified or set up

People exposed
to the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration

Direct and indirect jobs created and supported

Hectares under direct regeneration/restoration with early ripple effects to 2 million hectares across 4 landscapes

4 returns business cases identified or set up

Global impact

(data from South Africa, Spain, Australia, The Netherlands)

  • 2019
  • 2018
x25
60.000
Total
1,5 milion
+100
82
Total
182
+40,000
10.000
Total
50.000
+20
10
Total
30
  • 2019
  • 2018
35
landowners and farmers working with landscape partners
65
direct jobs have been created
11.354
hectares under improved regenerative management
9
business cases identified or set up
  • 2019
  • Baviaanskloof
  • Langkloof
  • 1 : 100

10 year ambition:

10,000 people exposed and reached.

Year 5:

In 2019, Living Lands, Grounded, the Baviaanskloof Development Company and The Langkloof Honeybush Co. work directly with 35 landowners and farmers on rehabilitation and regenerative agriculture in the Baviaanskloof and Langkloof.

Our work has been presented at five key industry events and conferences and has been documented by the United Nations Environment Programme.

10 year ambition:

25 jobs provided and supported

Year 5:

To date, 65 direct jobs have been created.

Our work also directly supports four networks to build social capital between stakeholders in the landscape.

10 year ambition:

32,000 hectares under improved management

Year 5:

Total area under improved management in 2019: 11 354ha. A total 9000 hectares in the Baviaanskloof are being ‘freed up’ for rehabilitation in a phased approach.

In zone two, 1574 hectares are under direct rehabilitation and 660 hectares under sustainable honeybush harvest plans. In zone one, 120 hectares are under regenerative agriculture.

10 year ambition:

Improved cost-benefit ratios for farmers active in the Baviaanskloof Devco and Langkloof Honeybush Co.

Year 5:

As the business learns and adapts, the Baviaanskloof Devco and The Langkloof Honeybush Co. are stimulating the farmers’ sense of ownership through discussions on pricing and future profit-sharing mechanisms.

+1M
people exposed to AlVelAl’s work
14
direct and indirect jobs created or supported
10,000
hectares under improved regenerative management
+11
business cases supported by AlVelal
  • 2019
  • Altiplano Estepario
  • 1 : 70

5-year ambition:

10,000+ people exposed to the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration, including 400+ community members & 200+ farmers & 10+ inspired initiatives.

Year 4:

In 2019, 1 million+ people were exposed to AlVelAl’s work with over 2,000 people (incl. 260 community members and 100+ farmers) participating in events and becoming aware of the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration and
3 AlVelAl-inspired projects sprouted.

5-year ambition:

10,000 ha under regenerative management farming and 20,000 ha positively influenced; 8,000 ha of corridors between 3 parks established reforested successful.

Year 4:

In 2019, around 10,000 ha are under improved
regenerative management and 20,000 hectares are positively influenced. Over 5,000 holm oaks were planted, 47,000 seeds were collected, germinated and planted in 2019, over 80+ hectares have all year green cover, 1,500 hectares of winter cover. In total 75km
of swales, 92 ponds and 45 farmers are applying hydric corrections to capture water in the landscape.
These on-farm regenerative actions have increased partly through the AlVelAl seed fund.

5-year ambition:

500+ AlVelAl members and 100+ farmers participate
in restoration through regenerative agriculture & natural land managements, 5+ partnerships and 30+ jobs supported or created.

Year 4:

In 2019, almost 300 AlVelAl members of which 80+ farmers participate in landscape restoration through regenerative agriculture practices and natural land management. Three new people have been hired in AlVelAl and 1 In Almendrehesa, at least 20 new businesses identified and sprouted from or inspired by AlVelAl, which
in turn have brought jobs for 10 people in setting up
business cases (via AlVelAl 4 Returns Awards).

5-year ambition:

Increased flow of funds (> 1,000,000 EUR) toward
4 returns initiatives and 5 investors committed.

Year 4:

Over 600,000 euros of increased funding flow toward holistic landscape vision and 3 new investors committed. Two new business cases in process (regenerative oil & food processing) and over 9 business cases supported by AlVelAl.

99
customers purchasing a Dirty Clean
Food™ product
19
direct and indirect jobs created or supported
25,911
hectares under improved holistic management
3
business cases identified or set up
  • 2019
  • Wheatbelt
  • 1 : 240

5-year ambition:

5,000 consumers and 10 farmers participate in new food and farm system.

Year 2:

In 2019 WOA had 64
online consumers and 35 restaurants/food service customers purchasing a Dirty Clean Food™ product with 5,599 followers
on social media and 3 new farmer partners either signing a WOAPP (Production Protocols) or Supplier Agreement.

5-year ambition:

Facilitate opportunities for regenerative entrepreneurship and skill development in target landscape - at least
20 trainings or farmer exchange events in collaboration with 5 long- term network partners.

Year 2:

In 2019, WOA provided direct employment, and supported indirect roles or key consultancies to 19
people. Our farmer partners or suppliers attended 8 events and are members
of 12 organisations based in WA region. WOA staff attended 19 community or industry events. WOA
collaborates with 10 network partners.

5-year ambition:

Help facilitate ecosystem health regeneration, increased number of hectares under improved management (in WOA’s land portfolio and through collaboration).

Year 2:

In 2019 WOA received commitments from 3 farmer partners together representing 25,911 hectares under improved holistic management following
the Soil Carbon Initiative commitments and performance areas.

5-year ambition:

Create a financially profitable 4Returns
company that can reinvest and diversify regenerative commercial ventures.

Year 2:

WOA posted a loss as per its Annual Report issued in June 2019. The company
commenced domestic sales of grass-fed beef and lamb to restaurants and food sector in June 2019, allowing the company to show a pathway to profitability with sales revenue of $400,000 in six months of operation.

500,000
people exposed to Wij.land’s work
58
farmers experimenting on their farms with 70 pilot activities
626
hectares under improved management
7
business cases identified or set up
  • 2019
  • Peat Meadows
  • 1 : 20

5-year ambition:

1 million+ people inspired, 70 farmers participated in the initiative, 70 inspiring videos on regenerative practices.

Year 3:

In 2019, Wij.land exposed 500,000 people to their work, 58 farmers are actively participating, and 42 regenerative practice videos have been created.

5-year ambition:

1,000 ha under improved management practices, plus 250 ha of natural zones improved.

Year 3:

In 2019, another 150+ ha was put under improved management, making 560 ha under improved management. A total of of 66 ha of natural zones have started improved management with soil
amendments & vegetation scans to be used in research going forward.

5-year ambition:

70+ farmers active in 100+ pilot activities, 5 farmers transition to regenerative farms & 3+ community activities organised.

Year 3:

In 2019, 58 farmers are experimenting on their farms with 70 pilot activities. 4 farmers have ‘nature farm plans’ though the transition is a learning process and community activities have not yet been implemented.

5-year ambition:

10 ‘4 returns business cases’ tested & validated, of which 2+ are profitable, plus 5 funders actively engaged.

Year 3:

In 2019, 7 «4 returns» business cases were in development, all in a start- up phase. Currently, there are 4 public and private funders actively engaged.

Global impact

People exposed
to the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration

x25
60.000
Total
1,5 milion
  • 2019
  • 2018

Direct and indirect jobs created and supported

+100
82
Total
182
  • 2019
  • 2018

Hectares under direct regeneration/restoration with early ripple effects to 2 million hectares across 4 landscapes

+40,000
10.000
Total
50.000
  • 2019
  • 2018

4 returns business cases identified or set up

+20
10
Total
30
  • 2019
  • 2018

South Africa

  • Baviaanskloof
  • Langkloof
  • 1 : 100

People exposed
to the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration

35
landowners and farmers working with landscape partners
  • 2019
10 year ambition:

10,000 people exposed and reached.

Year 5:

In 2019, Living Lands, Grounded, the Baviaanskloof Development Company and The Langkloof Honeybush Co. work directly with 35 landowners and farmers on rehabilitation and regenerative agriculture in the Baviaanskloof and Langkloof.

Our work has been presented at five key industry events and conferences and has been documented by the United Nations Environment Programme.

Direct and indirect jobs created and supported

65
direct jobs have been created
  • 2019
10 year ambition:

25 jobs provided and supported

Year 5:

To date, 65 direct jobs have been created.

Our work also directly supports four networks to build social capital between stakeholders in the landscape.

Hectares under direct regeneration/restoration with early ripple effects to 2 million hectares across 4 landscapes

11.354
hectares under improved regenerative management
  • 2019
10 year ambition:

32,000 hectares under improved management

Year 5:

Total area under improved management in 2019: 11 354ha. A total 9000 hectares in the Baviaanskloof are being ‘freed up’ for rehabilitation in a phased approach.

In zone two, 1574 hectares are under direct rehabilitation and 660 hectares under sustainable honeybush harvest plans. In zone one, 120 hectares are under regenerative agriculture.

4 returns business cases identified or set up

9
business cases identified or set up
  • 2019
10 year ambition:

Improved cost-benefit ratios for farmers active in the Baviaanskloof Devco and Langkloof Honeybush Co.

Year 5:

As the business learns and adapts, the Baviaanskloof Devco and The Langkloof Honeybush Co. are stimulating the farmers’ sense of ownership through discussions on pricing and future profit-sharing mechanisms.

Spain

  • Altiplano Estepario
  • 1 : 70

People exposed
to the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration

+1M
people exposed to AlVelAl’s work
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

10,000+ people exposed to the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration, including 400+ community members & 200+ farmers & 10+ inspired initiatives.

Year 4:

In 2019, 1 million+ people were exposed to AlVelAl’s work with over 2,000 people (incl. 260 community members and 100+ farmers) participating in events and becoming aware of the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration and
3 AlVelAl-inspired projects sprouted.

Direct and indirect jobs created and supported

14
direct and indirect jobs created or supported
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

10,000 ha under regenerative management farming and 20,000 ha positively influenced; 8,000 ha of corridors between 3 parks established reforested successful.

Year 4:

In 2019, around 10,000 ha are under improved
regenerative management and 20,000 hectares are positively influenced. Over 5,000 holm oaks were planted, 47,000 seeds were collected, germinated and planted in 2019, over 80+ hectares have all year green cover, 1,500 hectares of winter cover. In total 75km
of swales, 92 ponds and 45 farmers are applying hydric corrections to capture water in the landscape.
These on-farm regenerative actions have increased partly through the AlVelAl seed fund.

Hectares under direct regeneration/restoration with early ripple effects to 2 million hectares across 4 landscapes

10,000
hectares under improved regenerative management
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

500+ AlVelAl members and 100+ farmers participate
in restoration through regenerative agriculture & natural land managements, 5+ partnerships and 30+ jobs supported or created.

Year 4:

In 2019, almost 300 AlVelAl members of which 80+ farmers participate in landscape restoration through regenerative agriculture practices and natural land management. Three new people have been hired in AlVelAl and 1 In Almendrehesa, at least 20 new businesses identified and sprouted from or inspired by AlVelAl, which
in turn have brought jobs for 10 people in setting up
business cases (via AlVelAl 4 Returns Awards).

4 returns business cases identified or set up

+11
business cases supported by AlVelal
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

Increased flow of funds (> 1,000,000 EUR) toward
4 returns initiatives and 5 investors committed.

Year 4:

Over 600,000 euros of increased funding flow toward holistic landscape vision and 3 new investors committed. Two new business cases in process (regenerative oil & food processing) and over 9 business cases supported by AlVelAl.

Australia

  • Wheatbelt
  • 1 : 240

People exposed
to the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration

99
customers purchasing a Dirty Clean
Food™ product
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

5,000 consumers and 10 farmers participate in new food and farm system.

Year 2:

In 2019 WOA had 64
online consumers and 35 restaurants/food service customers purchasing a Dirty Clean Food™ product with 5,599 followers
on social media and 3 new farmer partners either signing a WOAPP (Production Protocols) or Supplier Agreement.

Direct and indirect jobs created and supported

19
direct and indirect jobs created or supported
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

Facilitate opportunities for regenerative entrepreneurship and skill development in target landscape - at least
20 trainings or farmer exchange events in collaboration with 5 long- term network partners.

Year 2:

In 2019, WOA provided direct employment, and supported indirect roles or key consultancies to 19
people. Our farmer partners or suppliers attended 8 events and are members
of 12 organisations based in WA region. WOA staff attended 19 community or industry events. WOA
collaborates with 10 network partners.

Hectares under direct regeneration/restoration with early ripple effects to 2 million hectares across 4 landscapes

25,911
hectares under improved holistic management
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

Help facilitate ecosystem health regeneration, increased number of hectares under improved management (in WOA’s land portfolio and through collaboration).

Year 2:

In 2019 WOA received commitments from 3 farmer partners together representing 25,911 hectares under improved holistic management following
the Soil Carbon Initiative commitments and performance areas.

4 returns business cases identified or set up

3
business cases identified or set up
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

Create a financially profitable 4Returns
company that can reinvest and diversify regenerative commercial ventures.

Year 2:

WOA posted a loss as per its Annual Report issued in June 2019. The company
commenced domestic sales of grass-fed beef and lamb to restaurants and food sector in June 2019, allowing the company to show a pathway to profitability with sales revenue of $400,000 in six months of operation.

The Netherlands

  • Peat Meadows
  • 1 : 20

People exposed
to the opportunity of 4 returns landscape restoration

500,000
people exposed to Wij.land’s work
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

1 million+ people inspired, 70 farmers participated in the initiative, 70 inspiring videos on regenerative practices.

Year 3:

In 2019, Wij.land exposed 500,000 people to their work, 58 farmers are actively participating, and 42 regenerative practice videos have been created.

Direct and indirect jobs created and supported

58
farmers experimenting on their farms with 70 pilot activities
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

1,000 ha under improved management practices, plus 250 ha of natural zones improved.

Year 3:

In 2019, another 150+ ha was put under improved management, making 560 ha under improved management. A total of of 66 ha of natural zones have started improved management with soil
amendments & vegetation scans to be used in research going forward.

Hectares under direct regeneration/restoration with early ripple effects to 2 million hectares across 4 landscapes

626
hectares under improved management
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

70+ farmers active in 100+ pilot activities, 5 farmers transition to regenerative farms & 3+ community activities organised.

Year 3:

In 2019, 58 farmers are experimenting on their farms with 70 pilot activities. 4 farmers have ‘nature farm plans’ though the transition is a learning process and community activities have not yet been implemented.

4 returns business cases identified or set up

7
business cases identified or set up
  • 2019
5-year ambition:

10 ‘4 returns business cases’ tested & validated, of which 2+ are profitable, plus 5 funders actively engaged.

Year 3:

In 2019, 7 «4 returns» business cases were in development, all in a start- up phase. Currently, there are 4 public and private funders actively engaged.

Landscape Developments

2019 at a glance

January

The Netherlands: the Dutch 4 Returns Landscape becomes an independent organisation, starts with active farmers co-defining focus, strategy, and direction of Wij.land

South Africa: First harvest and processing of Honeybush for Langkloof Honeybush Company (combined zone)

Spain: AlVelAl begins with gastronomic workshops for culinary professionals to promote local foods (combined zone)

Haiti: Kick-off workshop with the Dutch Red Cross to start Green Pearls Initiative with a workplan for Haiti (combined zone)

India: Official start of the 4 Returns Agroforestry Landscape initiative in India together with IKEA Foundation

Launch of the documentary “Partnering for sustainable landscapes” with Wij.land

February

Australia: WOA granted an industrial hemp license to pilot hemp cultivation

Spain: AlVelAl 4 returns awards grants to 9 local entrepreneurs for innovative sustainability business ideas

Spain: 5.000 holm oak trees are planted in the natural zone

Knowledge, Education and Innovation: Launch of second MOOC (Massive Open Online Course): “Business model innovation for sustainable landscape restoration.”

General: UN Decade of Ecosystem Restoration adopted, CL takes part in prep working group on strategy

March

The Netherlands: Wij.land, along with other organisations, aided in drafting the Delta Plan for Biodiversity Recovery for North Holland

South Africa: 93ha of hillside rehabilitation in Baviaanskloof with hydrological improvement ponds, spekboom plantings, and alien tree removal

Article in the Spanish newspaper El País:
The difficult task of pushing back the desert in Spain

John D Liu presents at the Northern California Ecosystem Restoration Vision Council

Dutch Postcode Lottery doubles contribution to Commonland

Australia: wins a grant of 200k AUD for land and community restoration in Northern Wheatbelt

April

4 Returns Labs: "Voor de oogst van morgen" sensing day of 85 participants of innovation lab 18 April with Ministries of Agriculture, Nature & Food Quality, and Infrastructure and Water

Spain: Rural Pride Day was celebrated in Serón, Almería to celebrate countryside values, farmers, and the rural world

Knowledge, Education and Innovation: Both the first impact report and the 4returns.earth platform were launched

General: The Commonland team refreshed the organization’s strategy and our cornerstone funder COmON Foundation agreed to increase their support

May

4 Returns Labs: "For Tomorrows Harvest" podcast (in Dutch)

Australia: launch of a direct distribution platform for regenerative beef

CEO won the Dutch Landscape Award (Groeneveld Award)

John D Liu presents at the Global Earth Repair Conference in Port Townsend, Washington State

The centerfold spread in de Volkskrant van Jan Rothuizen

Annual 4 Returns Learning Fest welcomed over 30 practitioners and friends from the global network to learn and share experiences.

June

South Africa and Spain: Farmer exchange visit with 7 members of AlVelAl visting Baviaanskloof

Spain: Green Infrastructure Fund projects were presented for AlVelAl to invest in natural area restoration of partners’ farms

Continuation of the collaboration between the Dutch Society for Nature Conservation (Natuurmonumenten), Commonland and Wij.land until May 2022

John D Liu gives a keynote speech, navigating the disruption at the Global Security Conference, Sustainability Track in Bratislava, Slovak Republic

July

4 Returns Labs and Australia: Danjo Koorliny Walking Together initiative in Western Australia as part of the annual Social Impact Festival reaching 11,000 people. This important
impact festival driving social change in WA was designed and led by Aboriginal Elders and leaders ‘to help us all walk together as Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people towards 2029’ (200 years of colonisation in Perth, Western Australia), and beyond.

Knowledge, Education and Innovation: We co-authored an article for the Society of Ecological Restoration (SER) News
"Building the investment case for business- driven landscape restoration"

August

Australia: Dirty Clean Food brand launched, 28% stake in AgTalent secured, & 23,000 seedlings planted

South Africa: 9 Cape Mountain Zebra were reintroduced into Baviaanskloof as part of a pilot project for the vulnerable species native to the region

Kick-off Commonland Culture Days to strengthen the work culture.

September

Australia: Perth NRM and RegenWA hosted the Regenerative Agriculture conference in Western Australia - Investing in our Food Future

Spain: AlVelAL organized its first Agro- Experience open day for partners to share and explain their regenerative techniques to interested visitors

India: field trip to India to start with the filming of the agroforestry best practices, to interview experts, have a kick-off meeting with TNC India partners and to appoint Advisory Board members

Our was represented at the Global Landscapes Forum (GLF) at the UN Headquarters in New York. Start 1000 Landscapes for a Billion People initiative

General: new website launched 27 September

The first version of the Monetization report was finalised to support making a case for holistic and business-driven landscape restoration to investor communities. The report will be further disseminated throughout 2020

October

The Netherlands: Welcome to the Wij.land event organised to connect and share with local stakeholders exploring the landscape

4 Returns Labs and Australia: 14-16 October Aboriginal elder-led in-country trip with 50 leaders

Haiti: Whitepaper “4 Returns 4 Resilience” (4R4R) finalised and internally spread in Red Cross Movement

Knowledge, Education and Innnovation: we co-organised 3 Digital Summits with the Global Landscapes Forum on participatory monitoring, participatory modelling, and forest fires

November

The Netherlands: the herbal tea 4R company Ptthee, a restoration business supported by Wij.land, won the ‘ASN Bank Prize, helping them supercharge their business to increase biodiversity on farmland

Spain: Pilot project of regenerative olive oil “Habitat” initiated with 3,000 litres produced for market testing

South Africa: Living lands scales up rehabilitation in Baviaanskloof through the creation of extensive ponding systems, brush packing and reseeding (supported by funding from Commonland, the Dutch Nationale Postcode Loterij, the Coca-Cola
Africa Foundation and the Global Environment Facility). The local team is growing with up to 40 workers in the field, over 1,500 hectares of active rehabilitations interventions and a further 9,000 hectares freed up being freed up for rehabilitation in a phased approach

Haiti: landscape mapping through drone aerial imagery and GIS data led by Daniel Halsey, Director of a permaculture and ecological design co-op, begun with a great start in the Haiti landscape

Zambia: Start with writing our carbon method under the Gold standard

For Tomorrows Harvest: 4 Returns Lab, successfully ended in cooperation with the Dutch Government

General: Presentation at the European Business and Biodiversity in Madrid (winner of most innovative solution)

December

Australia: rangeland pastoralists in Western Australia won a case to allow them to ‘carbon farm’: i.e. earn carbon credits by sequestering carbon through Human Induced Regeneration on their lands

4 Returns Labs: innovative Labs trajectories rolled out in the Netherlands, Philippines, Galapagos (Ecuador) and Australia

The Netherlands: 58 farmers are active in more than 70 pilots on soil biology, the development of herb-rich grassland, strip grazing, manure quality improvement, ration adjustment and more

In 2019, we presented the 4 Returns approach and the work of Commonland at almost 50 different global and local conferences, webinars and universities and contributed to several publications

Presentation at Red Cross High Level event Geneva

General: Commonland had its first full strategy day across all teams to update and align going forward into 2020

Restoring a landscape takes one generation (20 years).
This timeline show a snapshot of what happened on the
journey towards regeneration.

Landscape Development & Support

Knowledge, Education & Innovation

Building influence

Fund mobilization

Organisation

skip

We are doers, not dreamers

Being aware that sustainable landscape management is of great importance to find solutions on climate, food and biodiversity-related issues, this crisis has made clear that healthy ecosystems, healthy people and new ways of doing business are intrinsically linked.

Béla Jankovich read more

We don’t know what a post-COVID-19 future will bring us on the short term, as many expect a severe economic crisis. What we do know is that a new normal needs systemic answers that are practical and doable.

Willem Ferwerda read more

We are collectively facing on a planetary scale climate change, biodiversity loss, floods, drought, wild fires, pandemics, inequality, food insecurity, unemployment and the potential of economic collapse. Ecosystem or as we call it here ‘landscape restoration’ is key to addressing all of the problems that humanity is facing at this time.

John D. Liu read more

Sustainable Development Goals

The 4 Returns are addressing
all Sustainable Development Goals

Although the 4 Returns have a direct and/or indirect link with all SDG’s, there are eight SDG’s that align directly
with our 4 Returns, 3 Zones, 20 Years
approach.

read more

Besides SDG’s 13, 14 and 15, Natural Capital logically contributes to SDG 2, 5, 6, 8, and 12.

read more

SDG 17 ‘Building partnerships’ is the conditional key to make holistic landscape management successful as it creates local Landscape Partnerships (bottom-up) and global partnerships (topdown) of funders, investors, policy and science.

read more

We do this through the Theory U. A model from the Presencing Institute that supports in complex multi- stakeholder processes, by changing traditional thought patterns.

read more

Although the 4 Returns have a direct and/or indirect link with all SDG’s, there are eight SDG’s that align directly
with our 4 Returns, 3 Zones, 20 Years
approach.

read more

Besides SDG’s 13, 14 and 15, Natural Capital logically contributes to SDG 2, 5, 6, 8, and 12.

read more

SDG 17 ‘Building partnerships’ is the conditional key to make holistic landscape management successful as it creates local Landscape Partnerships (bottom-up) and global partnerships (topdown) of funders, investors, policy and science.

read more

We do this through the Theory U. A model from the Presencing Institute that supports in complex multi- stakeholder processes, by changing traditional thought patterns.

read more

Testimonials

Willemijn de Iongh: "It’s been great to experience the natural process that a young organisation has to go through. Starting with the early adopters that have a clear vision and idea to bring into the world which – at the time – was quite radical in its shift from short-term & project-based to long- term and holistic thinking, the 4 returns approach."

read more

Tessa Snaterse: "So much has happened the past year at Commonland! I joined the team in January of 2019 and experienced how we redefined our organisation's strategy. This led to more long-term funding secured and the ability to grow the team and activities."

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"A highlight of our partnership in 2019 was coming together twice with a select group of partners and funders to discuss our common ground and ways to strengthen each other. Commonland connects people and is able to build bridges: in the field and also in the boardroom."

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"The IKEA Foundation cares for people and planet. If we are going to take
care of ourselves, we have to take care of the ecosystem we live in.
We need to ensure the food we produce is regenerating resources rather than depleting them and the landscapes we live in provide economic opportunities for all to thrive. We strongly believe that Commonland’s 4 Returns on investment in landscapes are key to achieving this."

read more

"We are proud that thanks to the players of The Dutch Postcode Lottery, we have been able to support Commonland since 2016 in their
important work of large-scale landscape restoration in the Netherlands, Spain, South Africa and Western Australia. In 2018 when I visited the South African landscape, I experienced first-hand the positive effects on the local community when hope is restored."

read more

"Commonland brings a network of knowledge in different areas that adds a lot of value to the Dutch Red Cross Princess Margriet Fund programs.
With a “hands-on” attitude, that knowledge is applied, and with this partnership we gain an extra depth in themes such as landscape restoration and how companies (should) restore and strengthen the ecological functions of the landscape."

read more

"We are extremely happy with our collaboration with Commonland in 2019. Throughout the year we have worked closely together with great success on a number of fronts."

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Thank you!

None of what has been achieved in 2019 could have been realized without the teamwork and collaboration amongst our exceptional colleagues, funders, partners and all others who have contributed in so many ways. We truly appreciate your support and involvement and like to say: thank you!

COmON foundation, Charlotte de Mevius, Dutch Postcode Lottery, Gieskes Strijbis Foundation, Ecosia, Dioraphte Foundation, IKEA Foundation,

LGT Philantrophy, Overlegorgaan Fysieke Leefomgeving, Dutch Ministry of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality, Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, Province of North Brabant.

International Union for Conservation of Nature | Commission on Ecosystem Management (IUCN CEM), Global Partnership on Forest and Landscape Restoration (GPFLR), Wageningen University, Erasmus University, Rotterdam School of Management (RSM), Economics of

Land Degradation (ELD) Initiative, World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Peace Parks Foundation, Red Cross, The IKEA Foundation, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and the Global Landscape Forum.

Everyone at our 4 Returns landscape partners: Grounded, Living Lands, Baviaanskloof DEVCO, Langkloof Honeybush CO, AlVelAl, La Almendrehesa,

Wide Open Agriculture, RegenWA, The University of Australia’s Centre for Social Impact, Sustain: the Australian Food Network, The Regional Regeneration Alliance, Dirty Clean Food, Wij.land, the Dutch Society for Nature Conservation (Natuurmonumenten), Basecamp Explorer

Foundation (BEF) and the Maasai Mara Wildlife Conservancies Association (MMWCA), The Peace Parks Foundation (PPF) and the Simalaha Community Conservancy (SCC), LEOS and Physical Environment Consultative Council of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management (OFL).