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Restoring Grasslands, Shrublands and Savannahs through Sustainable Extensive Livestock-based Food Systems

The coalition will lead action to restore grasslands, shrublands and savannahs through sustainable extensive livestock-based food systems to help optimize environmental resource use in production, reduce biodiversity loss, pollution, water use, soil degradation and greenhouse gas emissions.

The coalition will identify research needs, gather and share improved data on grasslands, shrublands and savannahs to enable more informed decision making, including investments and particularly restoration investment opportunities to increase adoption and upscaling of good practices. This will foster greater attention in global strategies and frameworks, such as CBD targets.

Science based evidence to prioritize this coalition

It is clear that while grasslands, shrublands and savannas are recognized as being of great importance as reservoirs of biodiversity, potential carbon sinks and sources of significant animal source foods, there are considerable research needs to identify the full range of opportunities.

Buisson, E., Fidelis, A., Overbeck, G.E., Schmidt, I.B., Durigan, G., Young, T.P., Alvarado, S.T., Arruda, A.J., Boisson, S., Bond, W., Coutinho, A., Kirkman, K., Oliveira, R.S., Schmitt, M.H., Siebert, F., Siebert, S.J., Thompson, D.I. and Silveira, F.A.O. (2021), A research agenda for the restoration of tropical and subtropical grasslands and savannas. Restor Ecol, 29: e13292. https://doi.org/10.1111/rec.13292

Péter Török, Lars Brudvig, Johannes Kollmann, Jodi Price, Béla Tóthmérész (eds). (2021), State of the art and future of grassland restoration. Restor Ecol, 29:S1 e13263. https://doi.org/10.1111/rec.13263

Mechanisms of implementation

  • Strengthening a multi-stakeholder platform on grasslands, shrublands and savannahs building on existing networks to raise awareness on their value, and advocate for their protection, sustainable use and restoration including through livestock-based food systems.
  • The development of a global data platform on grasslands, shrublands and savannahs including consolidation of global data sets already existing and the collection of new data to improve these and create new ones. Facilities for monitoring including remote sensing of land changes and crowd-sourcing of data will be included. Restoration potentials of rangelands will also be identified.
  • Development and documentation of good practices in the restoration of grasslands, shrublands and savannahs through extensive nature-positive livestock production/food systems.
  • Awareness raising at global, national and local levels of the value of extensive livestock production/food systems and their role (actual and potential) in protecting and restoring grasslands, shrublands and savannahs including the inclusion of grassland, shrublands and savannahs in the new CBD targets and the declaration of an International Year of Rangelands and Pastoralists.
  • Improving investments in restoration of grasslands, shrublands and savannahs including public, commercial and private finance and improvements in the enabling environment through national and global dialogues to ensure sustainability.

Strategic partners

The proposed Coalition of Action arises out of the Working Group of the UN FSS Solution Cluster on Restoring grasslands, shrublands and savannahs through sustainable extensive livestock-based food systems

Countries that would be likely to be involved in this coalition include the Government of Mongolia, which is leading the call for the International Year of Rangelands and Pastoralists (including written support from governments of Ethiopia, Australia, Afghanistan, Burkino Faso, Finland, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan), the members states attending a recent discussion on UNCCD targets organised IUCN and WWF, and the Governments of Sudan, Namibia and Ethiopia who lead the UNEA Resolution on “Combating desertification and land degradation and ensuring the sustainable management of rangelands” (UNEP/EA2/L24). Time did not allow for us to approach them before submission of this document.

There is significant support for this coalition globally amongst multiple stakeholders, expressed in the global support given to the International Year of Rangelands and Pastoralists (with over 50 international and local organisations supporting) and the UN Decade of Ecosystem Restoration in which Grasslands, Shrublands and Savannahs have been identified as one of the six ecosystems requiring specific and urgent attention. These ecosystems will also be receiving attention in the upcoming COPs. Further this coalition will develop links with and complement the work the Global Agenda on Sustainable Livestock’s action network Restoring Value to Grasslands, and the WWF-led multi-stakeholder global Platform on Grasslands and Savannahs, as well as contribute to developing the global Rangelands Data Platform and the recently launched global Rangelands Atlas.

ILRI / CGIAR,
GRSB

Monitoring and Evaluation

Further details will be developed as part of the implementation plan in consultation with existing fora as listed in this document. A continuous monitoring system will be established to facilitate iterative improvements and learning from research and practices around the world.

Focal point contacts

Express your interest in joining this coalition