Making the Sustainable Development Goals work

Holistic Landscape Management and Restoration are endorsed by the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s)

 

The long view and high ambitions

With sustainable business cases, Commonland is committed to restoring no less than 100 million hectares (twice the size of Spain) of degraded landscape, to healthy land, by 2040. Our mission  matches  seamlessly with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals that seek to create a better future for people and planet.

Commonland’s work is best characterised by the 4 Returns approach: Inspiration, Social Capital, Natural Capital, Financial Capital delivered by a landscape zoning for a period of minimum a generation. Our  goal is to extend the 4 Returns framework into a global movement, by tying into the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and initiatives like the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030), World Economic Forum’s agenda on Nature Based Solutions, 1000 Landscapes Initiative and especially the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s).  These 17 goals, adopted by all UN member states in 2015, acknowledge that an end to poverty and a better life for earth’s peoples go hand-in- hand with protecting our ecosystems. Restoring land is not just about the landscape, but also the ecosystem and communities that are connected to that land.

At least eight SDG’s align directly with the 4 Returns, 3 Zones, 20 Years approach. Natural Capital logically contributes to SDG 2 (local agriculture becomes more resilience and diversified), SDG 5, 6, 8, 12, 13 (as it removes carbon from the atmosphere), 14 and 15. The 4 Returns indirectly contribute to other SDG’s such as: SDG 3 ‘Good Health and Well-being’ is a goal that benefits from Inspiration, Social Capital and Natural Capital all together, as they will help create thriving communities living in healthy landscapes. All seventeen SDGs are reliant upon a restoration of the land and its ecosystems, as they form the ecological foundation of everything that we do. However, 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 (top-down) of funders, investors, policy and science. And that is exactly what we mean when we say we want to turn the 4 Returns framework into a global movement by creating a universal framework that connects the dots. Commonland is building a proven concept that shows that working together within large landscapes and using the same KPIs creates a new model for organisations, businesses, governments, NGO’s and various experts to achieve long term results.

 

The SDGs are part of the UN’s 2030 Agenda of Sustainable Development. Together with our partners, we take a similar long view, of a minimum of 20 years (one generation) to see landscapes successfully restored. That long view comes with high ambitions: Commonland seeks to transform 100 million hectares of degraded land into thriving ecosystems and communities by 2040. From halting desertification in Spain to reforesting the hills of Haiti, from promoting agroforestry in India to clearing invasive alien trees in South Africa’s Baviaanskloof; the movement is underway.

The 4 Returns are addressing
all Sustainable Development Goals

lthough 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.

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

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.

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.

lthough 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.

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

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.

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.