The first Forum of the Northeast Asia Desertification, Land Degradation and Drought Network (DLDD-NEAN) held on 19 November 2012 in Seoul, Republic of Korea served as a first substantive platform for regional networking, capacity building and exchange of experiences and best practices on combating DLDD and dust and sandstorms (DSS) since its establishment. More than 70 participants from government, academia, research institutes, international organizations and CSOs benefited from learning about their respective challenges with available expertise.
Under the theme Sharing Experiences and Expertise on Combating Desertification, experts from member countries, namely the People’s Republic of China, Mongolia and the Republic of Korea, presented afforestation activities including best practices on combating desertification.
The importance of capacity building, participation of the local communities and improvement of their livelihood was reiterated. Yong Kwon Lee, Korea Forest Service, introduced the Korea-Mongolia Greenbelt Project and efforts being made to raise public awareness and enhance capacity building of the local participants through establishing forestry education centers in project sites. He also introduced a method of sustainable management of project sites by applying agroforestry practices.
Jia Xiaoxia, National Bureau to Combat Desertification of the State Forestry Administration, shared lessons learned from over 50 years of Chinese experiences on combating desertification. Every year, about 250 thousand hectares of degraded land are being restored in China. A series of plantation projects have led to a significant reduction of DSS in the areas surrounding Beijing.
Jamsran Tsogrbaatar, Mongolian Academy of Sciences Institute of Geoecology, presented some cases of best practices on establishing windbreak forests and implementing projects for sand dune fixation in the Gobi Desert. Mongolia now has a new act on soil conservation and combating desertification.
The Forum allowed information sharing between the public and private sectors as the afternoon session was devoted to presentations of CSOs, international organization and other relevant organizations from the private sector.
About the DLDD-NEAN Forum
The DLDD-NEAN is one of the ongoing activities of the Changwon Initiative under its component on the promotion of partnership arrangements. It was established on the margins of the tenth session of the UNCCD COP 10 in Changwon, Republic of Korea to better address the growing impacts of DLDD and DSS in the region in line with the context of The Strategy. The Forum will be organized annually to introduce DLDD policies, priority areas and activities in both public and private sectors as well as to gather extensive opinions from various fields.
For more information on the Forum contact: DLDD-NEAN Secretariat (Korea Forest Service) firstname.lastname@example.org