Grounding sustainability: land, soils and the Sustainable Development Goals
|Main authors:||Catherine Bowyer , Clunie Keenleyside, Silvia Nanni, Anouchka Hoffmann, Nathalie van Haren , Karin van Boxtel, Paul Wolvekamp|
|iSQAPERiS editor:||Jane Brandt|
|Source document:||Bowyer, C. et al. (2018) Initial stocktaking report on existing policy measures. iSQAPER Project Deliverable 8.1, 125 pp|
In the last decades, the issue of soil and land has been raised on the agenda, both locally and internationally. In the discussions of four Global Soil Weeks about land and soils, land tenure played an increasingly important role in bringing soil health to the forefront. Land governance is being discussed in the United Nations and has resulted in the Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests in the Context of National Food Security (VGGT).
We have seen the growing interest in land tenure and land degradation in international and national UNCCD discussions, which have resulted in the Conceptual Framework on Land Degradation Neutrality and also in the development of a Land Degradation Neutrality Fund. The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) is developing an international assessment on land degradation and restoration which will be finalised in 2018. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is commissioning a Special Report on Climate Change and Land, to be ready in 2019, which will address desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management and greenhouse gas emissions. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) embody these considerations and the interconnectedness of soil, land governance, land degradation and restoration, and climate change.
This section of iSQAPERiS seeks to offer an analysis of the linkages of the SDGs with land use (decisions) and soil health and to provide insights on and recommendations for the opportunities of the SDGs to enhance soil and land management and restoration. To put these connections into perspective, we start with a succinct overview of the most recent policy developments
»Introduction to the Sustainable Development Goals
This is followed by a study of the most relevant SDGs and targets concerning soils and land use
»Relevant SDG for land use and soil health
and an overview of the implications for policymakers, land users, farmers, the private sector, civil society and academics
»Implications of the SDGs
We conclude that, despite the difficulties involved, there is hope that progressive reforms to land governance and land and soil management can be achieved, particularly because of the multiple stakeholders who have an interest in advocating, implementing and tracking land issues related to the SDGs
Note: see also »Briefing papers where the results emerging from this and other sections of the scientific work programme are placed within wider policy and decision-making contexts.