“Little” Book Supports Sustainable Landscape Management

little_sustainable_bookJanuary 2016: 'The Little Sustainable Landscapes Book: Achieving sustainable development through integrated landscape management' aims to clarify and disseminate sustainable landscape management methods and catalyze their implementation across private and public sectors worldwide. The book was produced by experts from the Global Canopy Programme (GCP), EcoAgriculture Partners, the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH), The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), with additional support and funding from diverse bilateral and multilateral development agencies.

The authors relay the case for tackling complex development challenges, such as the depletion of underground aquifers, wildlife habitat loss, water pollution and adaptation to climate change - at the landscape scale, underscoring that this approach offers the opportunity to address a far greater composite of factors across sectors and stakeholders from the outset. They note that the approach “should increase the probability of successful outcomes.”

The book is organized under five broad sections: "framing the issue"; trends in integrated landscape management; elements of integrated landscape management; catalysts for sustainable landscapes; and general lessons and recommendations. Across the book, the authors draw on infographics and numerous case studies to illustrate how practitioners are implementing integrated landscape management approaches. The book also explores how technological advances such as green infrastructure technologies and remote sensing and geographic information systems are enabling integrated natural resource management and landscape-wide approaches. The publication provides an overview of the latest policy and funding initiatives to encourage the scale-up of successful practices.

The book highlights best practices, including: a programme to increase sustainably produced charcoal in Madagascar by encouraging wood energy production outside natural forests; regional cooperation by China, India and Nepal to support integrated conservation and development within the Kailash Sacred Landscape of Tibet; agricultural landscape restoration in northern Viet Nam and the Tigray highlands of Ethiopia to tackle land degradation and enhance farmers' livelihoods; “ridge-to-reef” land use planning approaches in the Philippines; landscape-scale Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) schemes, such as the Alto Mayo Protected Forest REDD+ project in Peru; and emerging landscape investment platforms, such the Landscape Fund and the Althelia Climate Fund.

In the concluding section, the authors offer five broad recommendations for scaling up sustainable landscape approaches: adopt integrated landscape management as a key means to make progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at national and sub-national scales; empower local stakeholders to design sustainable landscape solutions that meet their unique priorities and contexts; develop landscape strategies that contribute to inclusive green economies; leverage multiple sources of finance to achieve landscape goals; and build capacity and facilitate learning among key stakeholders for better outcomes in integrated landscape management. [Global Canopy Programme Announcement] [Publication: The Little Sustainable Landscapes Book: Achieving sustainable development through integrated landscape management]