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COP26: politicians declare to protect forests, land and ecosystems

Leaders of 124 countries reaffirmed their collective and individual commitment to the reversal of forest loss and land degradation by 2030 at the ongoing UN Climate Change Conference COP26 in Glasgow.

In the joint declaration, the leaders recognised “the critical and interdependent roles of forests of all types, biodiversity and sustainable land use in enabling the world to meet its sustainable development goals”.  

“We urge all leaders to join forces in a sustainable land use transition,” reads the declaration. “This is essential to meeting the Paris Agreement goals, including reducing vulnerability to the impacts of climate change and holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C and pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5°C. The science shows a further acceleration of efforts is needed if we are to collectively keep 1.5°C within reach.”

Among other issues, the leaders pledge to facilitate ecosystems restoration, sustainable commodity production, development of sustainable agriculture, improvement of rural livelihoods, recognition of the rights of Indigenous People and the alignment of financial flows to reverse forest loss, advance biodiversity, sustainable land use and climate goals.

In particular, forests cover over 30 per cent of Romania’s land and President Klaus Iohannis has recognised how protecting forests and sustainable land use are crucial to fight climate change.

“Romania is committed to enhancing the system of forest protection and planting forests in new areas,” he said.

The COP26 Summit brings parties together to accelerate action towards the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change.

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