19 April 2018, London – The Deputy Executive Secretary Pradeep Monga represented UNCCD at the Climate Change event during the recent Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting. Speaking about priorities for land-related climate action, Mr. Monga stressed that achieving common well-being takes on a new meaning in the context of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change and the 2030 development agenda.
Building a secure and prosperous future will require wise management of land – the single most important common asset and source of well-being for a vast number of people and communities. While land use sector provides livelihoods to millions of people worldwide, it also accounts for nearly a quarter of the global greenhouse gas emissions. Moreover, unsustainable land use practices, coupled with the effects of climate change, lead to land degradation, falling agricultural yields, rise in rural poverty, land abandonment, forced migration and conflict.
The answer to these global challenges lies in the joint approach to regenerating the land, making the investment in sustainable management of natural resources one of the smartest actions that countries could undertake together. Healthy and productive soil captures more carbon than it releases, and can contribute significantly to mitigating the adverse impacts of climate change.
116 UNCCD country parties have already committed to set voluntary national targets for Land Degradation Neutrality by 2030 to avoid, reduce and reverse land degradation. Investing in healthy land can generate multiple benefits required under the SDGs, such as food, water and energy security, poverty eradication, resilience of rural communities and ecosystem restoration. It will take a unified and strategic effort of all countries to enact smart policies, leverage innovative financing and strengthen partnerships to win race against time and achieve these goals.
Photo: Mr. Pradeep Monga (left) with the Prime Minister of Fiji H.E. Mr. Josaia Voreqe Bainimarama.