The International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) approved and accepted Climate Change and Land: an IPCC special report on climate change, desertification, land degradation, sustainable land management, food security, and greenhouse gas fluxes in terrestrial ecosystems at its 50th Session held on 2 – 7 August 2019.
Key findings of the report are:
- Land, including its water bodies, provides the basis for human livelihoods and well-being through primary productivity, the supply of food, freshwater, and multiple other ecosystem services.
- The current geographic spread of the use of land, the large appropriation of multiple ecosystem services and the loss of biodiversity are unprecedented in human history. Human use affects about 60–85% of forests and 70–90% of other natural ecosystems, which caused global biodiversity to decrease by around 11–14%.
- Warming over land has occurred at a faster rate than the global mean and this has had observable impacts on the land system.
- Urgent action to stop and reverse the over-exploitation of land resources would buffer the negative impacts of multiple pressures, including climate change, on ecosystems and society.
- Rapid reductions in anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions that restrict warming to “well-below” 2°C would greatly reduce the negative impacts of climate change on land ecosystems. In the absence of rapid emissions reductions, reliance on large-scale, land-based, climate change mitigation is projected to increase, which would aggravate existing pressures on land.
- There are many land-related climate change mitigation options that do not increase the competition for land. Many of these options have co-benefits for climate change adaptation.
- Sustainable food supply and food consumption, based on nutritionally balanced and diverse diets, would enhance food security under climate and socio-economic changes.
- A gender-inclusive approach offers opportunities to enhance the sustainable management of land.
- Regional and country-specific contexts affect the capacity to respond to climate change and its impacts, through adaptation and mitigation.
- Cross-scale, cross-sectoral and inclusive governance can enable coordinated policy that supports effective adaptation and mitigation.
- Scenarios and models are important tools to explore the trade-offs and co-benefits of land management decisions under uncertain futures.
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The content was originally posted on https://www.ipcc.ch/report/srccl/
Photo Credit: IPCC
The views expressed in the blog and report are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect those of the SDG Philanthropy Platform. The SDG Philanthropy Platform is a global initiative that connects philanthropy with knowledge and networks that can deepen collaboration, leverage resources and sustain impact, driving SDG delivery within national development planning. It is led by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors (RPA), and supported by the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, Ford Foundation, Oak Foundation, Brach Family Charitable Foundation, and many others.