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Monique Barbut, secretaria ejecutiva de la CLD, reclama soluciones a largo plazo contra la sequía y no sólo respuestas inmediatas

Bonn, Alemania, 22 Febrero 2016 – “Protejamos el planeta. Recuperemos la tierra. Involucremos a la gente´ es el eslogan para el Día Mundial de Lucha contra la Desertificación de este año, que se celebrará el 17 de junio. Hago un llamamiento a la solidaridad de la comunidad internacional hacia todos aquéllos que están luchando contra los estragos causados por la sequía y las inundaciones. Busquemos soluciones a largo plazo, no sólo respuestas inmediatas a desastres que están destruyendo comunidades enteras”, instó Monique Barbut, secretaria ejecutiva de la Convención de las Naciones Unidas de Lucha contra la Desertificación (CLD). Las sequías y las inundaciones que golpean a las comunidades de muchas partes del mundo están vinculadas con El Niño, que  se espera afecte hasta a 60 millones de personas de aquí a julio. En algunas áreas, incluidas la zona nororiental de Brasil, Somalia, Etiopía, Kenia y Namibia, los efectos de El Niño están desembocando en severas y recurrentes sequías en los últimos años. A los hogares que dependen de la tierra para cubrir sus necesidades alimenticias y agrícolas les resulta imposible recuperarse, especialmente cuando esta tierra está degradada.  Y lo que es más. Estas condiciones no sólo devastan familias sino que desestabilizan comunidades enteras. Los casos que no se atienden de manera urgente pueden convertirse en factores que empujen a la migración y desembocar en graves abusos contra los derechos humanos así como en amenazas contra la seguridad a largo plazo.  “Hemos visto esto antes  –en Darfur, tras cuatro décadas de sequías y desertificación y, más recientemente, en Siria, tras la larga sequía que duró desde 2007 hasta 2010–. Resulta trágico ver a una sociedad destruirse cuando podemos reducir la vulnerabilidad de las comunidades con actos simples y asequibles como restaurar las tierras degradadas que habitan y ayudar a las comunidades a establecer mejores sistemas de alerta temprana contra la sequía y a gestionar y prepararse para la sequía y las inundaciones”, dijo Barbut.  Barbut hizo estas declaraciones cuando anunció los planes para el Día Mundial de Lucha contra la Desertificación, que se celebrará el 17 de junio.  “Espero que el Día Mundial de Lucha contra la Desertificación de este año marque un punto y aparte para cada país. Necesitamos mostrar, gracias a la acción práctica y a la cooperación, cómo cada país está abordando o apoyando estos desafíos desde el principio para evitar o minimizar los potenciales impactos de los desastres, no sólo en el último momento, cuando los desastres han ocurrido”, afirmó. La Asamblea General de Naciones Unidas designó el 17 de junio como un día conmemorativo para concienciar a la ciudadanía sobre los esfuerzos internacionales para combatir la desertificación y los efectos de la sequía.  Barbut agradeció al Gobierno y la población de China su ofrecimiento para albergar el evento conmemorativo a escala mundial, que se celebrará en el Gran Salón del Pueblo, en Pekín.  “China tiene una gran experiencia restaurando tierra degradada y desiertos provocados por la acción humana. Este conocimiento puede y debe beneficiar a iniciativas como la Gran Muralla Verde africana, el reverdecimiento del sur de África y la iniciativa 20x20, en Latinoamérica. Podemos crear un mundo más igualitario y resistente al cambio climático”, dijo.  “También hago un llamamiento a los países, al sector privado, a las fundaciones y a la gente de buena voluntad para que apoyen a África cuando sus países se reúnan este año para desarrollar políticas y planes concretos para preveer, monitorear y gestionar las sequías”, afirmó Barbut.  La campaña del Día Mundial en 2016 también promocionará los Objetivos de Desarrollo Sostenible adoptados en septiembre del año pasado. Los Objetivos incluyen alcanzar la neutralidad en la degradación de la tierra para el 2030. Es decir, un mundo en el que la tierra restaurada sea igual o mayor a la degradada al cabo del año.  Para más información sobre el Día y eventos previos, visite: https://www2.unccd.int/actions/17-june-desertification-and-drought-day Contacto para el Día Mundial de Lucha contra la Desertificación: Yhori@unccd.int Para información para los medios: wwischnewski@unccd.int

Monique Barbut, secretaria ejecutiva de la CLD, reclama soluciones a largo plazo contra la sequía y no sólo respuestas inmediatas
Monique Barbut, secrétaire exécutive de la CNULCD, appelle à trouver des solutions à long terme et non de simples expédients pour lutter contre la sécheresse

Bonn, Allemagne, 22 Février 2016 – « Protégeons la planète. Restaurons les terres. Mobilisons-nous. Tel est », rappela Monique Barbut, secrétaire exécutive de la Convention des Nations Unies sur la lutte contre la désertification (CNULCD), « le thème adopté cette année pour la Journée mondiale de lutte contre la désertification célébrée le 17 juin. J’en appelle à la solidarité de la communauté internationale avec les populations qui luttent contre les ravages de la sécheresse et des inondations. Trouvons des solutions à long terme au lieu de simples expédients pour remédier aux catastrophes qui détruisent les communautés ». Les sécheresses et les inondations qui s’abattent sur les communautés de nombreuses parties du monde sont liées au phénomène El Niño, qui devrait affecter jusqu’à 60 millions de personnes d'ici au mois de juillet. Dans certaines régions, dont le nord-est du Brésil, la Somalie, l’Éthiopie, le Kenya et la Namibie, les effets d’El Niño viennent s'ajouter à des années de sécheresses sévères et récurrentes. Les ménages et les petits agriculteurs qui dépendent de la terre pour leur subsistance et leu nourriture  sont dans l’impossibilité de s’en remettre, en particulier lorsque les terres sont dégradées. Qui plus est, cette situation n’a pas pour seul effet de dévaster les familles et de déstabiliser les communautés. Si l’on ne tente pas d’y remédier dans les meilleurs délais, elle peut devenir un facteur favorisant les migrations et se solder par de graves violations des droits de l'homme et des menaces à long terme pour la sécurité. « Nous avons déjà vu cela au Darfour à la suite de quatre décennies de sécheresses et de désertification », poursuivit Monique Barbut, « et plus récemment en Syrie, après la longue sécheresse des années 2007-2010. Il est dramatique de voir s'effondrer une société, alors qu’il nous serait possible de réduire la vulnérabilité des communautés par des actions simples et peu dispendieuses consistant par exemple à restaurer les terres dégradées sur lesquelles elles vivent et à aider les pays à mettre en place de meilleurs systèmes d'alerte précoce en cas de sécheresse ainsi qu’à prévoir et gérer sécheresses et inondations. » Madame Barbut faisait ces remarques en annonçant les plans prévus cette année pour la Journée mondiale de lutte contre la désertification, qui se célèbre le 17 juin. « J’espère que cette année, » déclara-t-elle encore, « la Journée mondiale de lutte contre la désertification marquera un tournant pour tous les pays. Nous devons montrer, par des actions concrètes et par la coopération, que chaque pays aborde ou relève ces défis en amont afin d’anticiper ou de minimiser les impacts potentiels des catastrophes, et non pas seulement en aval et après que ces dernières se soient produites ». L'Assemblée générale des Nations Unies a désigné la journée du 17 juin pour sensibiliser l'opinion publique aux efforts internationaux de lutte contre la désertification et les effets de la sécheresse. Madame Barbut remercia le gouvernement et le peuple chinois pour avoir offert d'accueillir l’événement international organisé pour de célébrer cette journée, lequel se déroulera dans le Grand Hall du Peuple à Pékin. « La Chine », remarqua-t-elle, « dispose d’une expérience considérable en matière de remise en état des terres dégradées et des déserts engendrés par l'homme. Ces connaissances peuvent et doivent profiter à des initiatives telles que la Grande muraille verte africaine, le reverdissement en Afrique du Sud et l’Initiative 20 X 20 en Amérique latine. Nous pouvons créer un monde meilleur, plus équitable et résilient au changement climatique. J’appelle en outre les pays, le secteur privé, les fondations et les gens de bonne volonté à soutenir l’Afrique lorsque les pays se réuniront plus tard dans l'année pour élaborer des politiques et des plans concrets visant à anticiper, surveiller et gérer les sécheresses ». La campagne de sensibilisation de la Journée mondiale 2016 favorise par ailleurs la réalisation des objectifs de développement durable adoptés en septembre dernier. L’une des cibles de ces derniers consiste à atteindre d’ici à 2030 un monde neutre en termes de dégradation des terres. C’est-à-dire un monde où la quantité des terres remises en état serait égale ou supérieure à celle des terres dégradées chaque année. Pour de plus amples informations sur la Journée et les événements précédents : https://www2.unccd.int/actions/17-june-desertification-and-drought-day Personne à contacter pour la Journée mondiale de lutte contre la désertification : Yhori@unccd.int Informations à l'intention des médias : wwischnewski@unccd.int

Monique Barbut, secrétaire exécutive de la CNULCD, appelle à trouver des solutions à long terme et non de simples expédients pour lutter contre la sécheresse
UNCCD ES Monique Barbut Calls for Long-Term Solutions Not Just Quick Fixes To Drought

Bonn, Germany, 22 February 2016 – “Protect Earth. Restore Land. Engage People. This is the slogan for this year’s World Day to Combat Desertification to be held on 17 June. I am calling for solidarity from the international community with the people who are battling the ravages of drought and flood. Let us find long-term solutions, not just quick fixes, to disasters that are destroying communities,” urged Monique Barbut, Executive Secretary of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD). The droughts and floods beating down on communities in many parts of the world are linked to the current El Niño, which is expected to affect up 60 million people by July. In some areas, including in North Eastern Brazil, Somali, Ethiopia, Kenya and Namibia, the El Niño effects are coming on the back of years of severe and recurrent droughts. It is impossible for households that rely on the land for food and farm labor to recover, especially when the land is degraded. What’s more, these conditions do not just devastate families and destabilize communities. When they are not attended to urgently, they can become a push factor for migration, and end with gross human rights abuses and long-term security threats.  “We have seen this before – in Darfur following four decades of droughts and desertification and, more recently, in Syria, following the long drought of 2007-2010. It is tragic to see a society breaking down when we can reduce the vulnerability of communities through simple and affordable acts such as restoring the degraded lands they live on, and helping countries to set up better systems for drought early warning and to prepare for and manage drought and floods,” Barbut said. Ms Barbut made the remarks when announcing the plans for this year’s World Day to Combat Desertification, which will take place on 17 June. “I hope that World Day to Combat Desertification this year marks a turning point for every country. We need to show, through practical action and cooperation, how every country is tacking or supporting these challenges at the front-end to preempt or minimize the potential impacts of the disasters, not just at the back-end after the disasters happen,” she stated. The United Nations General Assembly designated 17 June as the observance Day to raise public awareness about international efforts to combat desertification and the effects of drought. Ms Barbut thanked the Government and People of China, for offering to host the global observance event, which will take place at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.  “China has vast experience in nursing degraded lands and man-made deserts back to health. This knowledge can and should benefit initiatives such as Africa’s Great Green Wall, the re-greening in southern Africa and the 20 X 20 Initiative in Latin America. We can create a better, more equal and climate change-resilient world,” she noted. “I also call on countries, the private sector, foundations and people of goodwill to support Africa  when the countries meet later in the year to develop concrete plans and policies to pre-empt, monitor and manage droughts,” Ms Barbut stated. The 2016 World Day campaign is also advancing the Sustainable Development Goals adopted in September last year. The Goals include a target to achieve a land degradation-neutral world by 2030. That is, a world where the land restored back to health equals to, or is more than, the amount degraded every year. For more information on the Day and previous events, visit: https://www2.unccd.int/actions/17-june-desertification-and-drought-day Contact for World Day to Combat Desertification: Yhori@unccd.int For Media information: wwischnewski@unccd.int

UNCCD ES Monique Barbut Calls for Long-Term Solutions Not Just Quick Fixes To Drought
Sub-Regional Knowledge Exchange and Capacity-Building Workshop on the Economic Valuation of Land and Ecosystem Services in Rwanda

Capturing the True Value of Land: Kigali to host international workshop on natural capital valuation Kigali, Rwanda, 7 December 2012 – The OSLO Consortium, the Global Mechanism, UNECA and the Land Policy Initiative, with support from the UNCCD, the Economics of Land Degradation, the Government of Norway, the European Economic Commission, and CABI present a Sub-regional Capacity Building Workshop on Natural Capital Valuation of Land and Ecosystem Services for Eastern Africa.  International experts from over 20 different countries will gather in Kigali for a four-day workshop on natural capital valuation of land. The aim of the workshop will be to provide participants (primarily land valuers from Eastern Africa) with the tools and methodologies to use land and ecosystem valuation to mobilize financial resources for sustainable land use.  More specifically, the workshop will: Provide a forum for sharing knowledge and evidence-based lessons and experiences, as well as for building networks of expertise; Be instrumental to the identification of adequate land policy reforms and/or the design of accompanying policy measures, such as incentives and market based mechanisms (IMBMs), risk management/mitigation tools and other enabling conditions to encourage private investment and business assurance; Strengthen the synergies and linkages in Eastern Africa on trans-boundary issues related to land management; Be a basis for formulating a framework for building consensus and outlining future action by the various stakeholders, practitioners and development partners. WHEN: 10-13, December 2012 WHERE: Lemigo Hotel, Kigali, Rwanda WHO: Simone Quatrini, Ecological Economist, The Global Mechanism/John Soussan, Scientific Coordinator, OSLO Consortium Joan Kagwanja, Chief, Land Policy Initiative (UNECA) With representatives from The World Bank; The ELD Initiative; UNEP; UNDP; The United Nations University; The Basque Center for Climate Change; The Wildlife Conservation Society; The University of Zurich, Kilimo Salama, Rwanda, Kenya, Madagascar, Zambia, Tanzania and more. Please contact Christina Wollesen c.wollesen@global-mechanism.org to request more information about the event, or a copy of the official concept note. The OSLO Consortium is a global partnership of leading research and academic institutions, international organizations and UN agencies engaged in the economic assessment of the total value of land and ecosystem services, and in the development of innovative solutions for sustainable land use. Its members are international experts in the fields of ecological economics, environmental science, development policy, and sustainable development.

Sub-Regional Knowledge Exchange and Capacity-Building Workshop on the Economic Valuation of Land and Ecosystem Services in Rwanda
Three Civil Society Organizations Win the USD100 000 Land for Life Award

Doha, Qatar, 4 December 2012 – Three civil society organizations, Sustainable Organic Integrated Livelihoods (SOIL) from Haiti, Conservation Efforts for Community Development (CECOD) from Uganda and the Turkish Foundation for Combating Soil Erosion (TEMA) of Turkey took home international recognition and financial awards totaling 100,000 United States dollars and medals at an evening gala held in Doha, Qatar. They won the global Land for Life Award that attracted over 100 applicants, and were recognized for their innovative, inspiring and transformative work to increase the natural health of soils and restore its productivity. The annual soil loss of 75 billion tons translates into that a loss of 4 and 10 tons of soil loss per person per year. And every year, 12 million hectares of land – an area equal to the size of Benin or the Dominican Republic – are lost to desertification or drought alone, and with it, the opportunity to produce 20 million tones of grain.  “Tonight we are celebrating three of the many hidden champions of this 21st century - those who have chosen, at their own expenses, to be the guardians of our soil, to take care of the health of our land for the sake of present and future generations,” said Mr. Luc Gnacadja, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, at the award gala. “We can create laws to protect the soil. If our children can be agents of change, why can’t we? Poverty is not an excuse – even in the worst of conditions, opportunities exist,” he said, referring to the achievements of the winners. SOIL, the first prize winner of US$40,000, has made specially designed toilets – ecotoilets – to collect human waste, which is then treated and turned into safe, nutrient-rich compost that is well-suited to regenerate depleted soil that can increase agricultural production. Coming from Haiti, the innovation is particularly notable and timely because not only is all the land in Haiti seriously degraded and in need of repair, but sanitation facilities are in short supply, the people depend on the land, as will the nation’s recovery from the 2010 earthquake disaster. “We will use this award to develop an integrated agricultural livelihood learning center that will have a full-scale composting operation, fruit tree nursery and solar-powered drip irrigation demonstration farm,” said Ms. Leah Nevada, who received the award on behalf of SOIL. CECOD and TEMA tied as runner-ups. Uganda’s CECOD won the award for mobilizing school children to be the agents through which new innovations on land-use are disseminated. It has mobilized 34,700 schools and over 12,000 households. “We will use the US$30,000 we have received to launch our own Green Flag Award to recognize schools and communities that are leading efforts in collaborative sustainable nature resource management,” said Robert Isingoma, Country Director of CECOD. TEMA’s achievement was the mobilization of 1million signatures to petition Turkey’s Parliament for a law to protect Turkey’s soil. It got 450,000 volunteers to do so, and has filed 158 successful legal cases in favor of environmental conservation. “The prize of 30,000 dollars will contribute to our awareness-raising activities,” said Mr. Sedar Sarigul, TEMA’s General Manager. Chief Guest at the event, Mr. Fahad Bin Mohammed Al- Attiya, Chairman of Qatar Nation Food Security Programme – one of the Awards’ sponsors – said these achievements support global food security, an issue of great interest to Qatar, which imports 90% of its food. Qatar has an ambitious vision – to be food secure by 2024 – which Mr. Al-Attiya compared to America’s 1960s aspiration to land a man on the moon. In a country that has no rivers or fresh water, “to produce our food does not seem feasible…. For us, it will be revolutionary and will help other people, including those who have no sources of food and water. The solution will spur a lot of unintended multipliers that will spread to other regions and help those like us who have food and water shortages,” he said. Mr. Gnacadja announced that the 2013 Land for Life Award will have two new prizes. A special prize will be designated for gender, to recognize the contribution of women. A new prize will be established targeting action in Africa, a region with highly vulnerable soils and where restoration of degraded land is urgently needed. At a subsequent press conference, Mr. Gnacadja said “what the winners have done is particularly notable because it one of the new and hot issues on the agenda of the global Climate Conference under way in Doha because the restoration of degraded land boosts adaption, and has the added benefits of alleviating poverty as well as mitigating climate change by sequestering carbon into the soil.” “Carbon is a pollutant in the air, but it boosts the fertility of the soil, and these three organizations show how we can channel it there. Land use and land use change, deforestation and agriculture are all major causes of global warming. Often, they are drivers of land degradation and soil erosion,” he says. “The restoration of degraded land, increasing soil fertility and land use techniques such as sustainable land management can reverse this process,” he added. Also speaking at the press conference, Sheikh Hamad Bin Ali Bin Jassim Al-Thani, Vice-Chair, QNFSP, said Qatar has had an overall strategy for food security under the Global Dry Land Alliance, and when the Award was launched they found the kind of new, innovative and creative initiative focused at the grassroots that they were looking to support. The award, he said, shows some “thinking outside the box” that addresses the big global challenges facing humanity, like hunger and food security. The Land for Life Award was established last year at the tenth session of the Parties to the UNCCD held in Changwon, Republic of Korea. It is part of the Changwon Initiative spearheaded by the Government of Korea, which has committed to provide a contribution towards the Award for five years. The 2012 Land for Life Award attracted 109 applications from all regions of the world. The 2013 award was launched on 3 November 2012 and nominations will close on 15 March 2013. About the UNCCD Desertification, along with climate change and the loss of biodiversity were identified as the greatest challenges to sustainable development during the 1992 Rio Earth Summit. Established in 1994, UNCCD is the sole legally binding international agreement linking environment, development and the promotion of healthy soils. The Convention’s 195 signatory Parties work to alleviate poverty in the drylands, maintain and restore the land’s productivity, and mitigate the effects of drought. Notes to Editors Videos of the award winning projects are available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jrNcN_HokFA&feature=results_video To download the high-resolution videos to go: https://spaces.hightail.com/resolve/1833854178/8c5f2c9f7c724acb475adaa10030d281 Pictures of the award ceremony are available on request at the email address below. For additional information on the Award, click here. For more information contact: Wagaki Mwangi Email: wmwangi@unccd.int Cell: +974 5584 6163 (in Doha)

Three Civil Society Organizations Win the USD100 000 Land for Life Award