Ecosystem restoration

Several international agreements and initiatives have set goals for ecosystem restoration. The most ambitious are the Bonn Challenge and the New York Declaration on Forests, which aim to restore 350 million hectares of deforested and degraded areas by 2030. Recently, the United Nations has declared the upcoming decade (2021 - 2030) as the decade of ecosystem restoration.
The International Institute for Sustainability (IIS) currently supports actors and decision makers in the ecosystem restoration space. For example, IIS is working with the Ministry of the Environment of Brazil, which commissioned the identification and mapping of priority and cost-effective areas for native vegetation recovery in 2015.
In response to this demand, IIS, in collaboration with national and international partners, has developed innovative algorithms and approaches to identify priority areas for restoration using a multi-criteria approach (Strassburg et al. 2019), as well as predictive models of the potential for natural regeneration - the cheapest restoration technique - in these areas (Crouzeilles et al. 2019).

Notably, benefits from ecosystem restoration vary in time and space. IIS has therefore adopted “systematic planning” methods under spatial frameworks that minimize conflicts and costs while maximizing benefits derived from ecosystem restoration.
The algorithm developed to identify priority areas for restoration performs better – by approximately 30% - than other optimization tools such as Marxan or Zonation (Beyer et al. 2016), making it attractive for decision making. Meanwhile, the predictive model of natural regeneration potential is approximately 80% accurate and has identified reductions in restoration costs of over 70% (Crouzeilles et al. 2019).
The algorithm developed for identifying priority areas is internationally recognized and IIS is currently supporting the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity in discussing the post-Aichi ecosystem restoration goal (goal 15) in two ways: i) hosting a thematic consultation on ecosystem restoration for the definition of post-Aichi goals, and ii) identifying priority areas for restoring native ecosystems at global scales.

Related Partners (10)

Associação Mico-Leão-Dourado (AMLD) Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety of Federal Republic of Germany Banco Mundial Columbia University Ministério do Meio Ambiente - Governo Federal (MMA) Secretaria do Meio Ambiente do Estado de São Paulo - SMA/SP UNEP/WCMC Global Environment Fund Forest Ecosystem Restoration Initiative Convention on Biological Diversity