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Forest Restoration in Landscapes

Forest Restoration in Landscapes

50 J. Morrison et al

50 J. Morrison et al Additional Reading International Tropical Timber Organisation. 2002. ITTO Guidelines for the Restoration, Management, and Rehabilitation of Degraded and Secondary Tropical Forests. ITTO Policy Development Series No. 13, Yokohama, Japan. Moguel, P., and Toledo, V.M. 1999. Biodiversity conservation in traditional coffee systems of Mexico. Conservation Biology 13:11–21. Pimentel, D., Stachow, U., Takacs, D.A., et al. 1992. Conserving biological diversity in agricultural forestry systems: most biological diversity exists in human-managed ecosystems. Bioscience 42: 354–362. Victor, D.G., and Ausubel, J.H. 2000. Restoring the forest: skinhead earth? Foreign Affairs 79(6):127– 144.

7 Why Do We Need to Consider Restoration in a Landscape Context? Nigel Dudley, John Morrison, James Aronson, and Stephanie Mansourian Key Points to Retain Restoration is already needed in many important forest ecosystems because loss and degradation have proceeded to a point where the ecosystem is no longer sustainable in the long term. Approaching restoration on a landscape scale means addressing conservation issues while considering social concerns, at a scale where optimisation and trade-offs are easier to agree on than at the site level. Most current restoration activities tend too often to focus on one or two benefits and miss the wider picture. Tools are starting to be developed that help to negotiate realistic mixes of management actions, including a suite of restoration activities, and biodiversity protection, at the full landscape scale. 1. Background and Explanation of the Issue The landscape is the spatial and ecological scale at which the range of different ecological, social, and economic needs and desires of stakeholders can best be discussed, compared, and integrated. 1.1. Why Restore? Conservation strategies that rely solely on protected areas and sustainable management have proved insufficient either to secure biodiversity or to stabilise the environment. The United Nations Environment Programme now classifies a large proportion of the world’s land surface as “degraded,” and reversing this damage is one of the largest and most complex challenges of the 21st century. Habitat loss is already so severe that conservation programmes need to include restoration if they are to deliver long-term success. Analysis of the WWF Global 200 ecoregions—identified as those of the highest conservation importance— demonstrates the problems. Over 80 percent of the G200 forest ecoregions need restoration in at least parts of their area; deforestation is a key threat to water quality in 59 percent of G200 freshwater ecoregions, and three quarters of G200 mangrove ecoregions are under threat. 76 Even where forest is stable or increasing, parallel losses of forest quality create the need for restoration. In Western Europe, for instance, research by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe found that most countries had less than 1 percent of their forests surviving in an unmanaged state. 77 Forest loss is not only of concern to conservationists.The United Nations estimates that 60 million people are directly dependent on forest 76 Dudley and Mansourian, 2000. 77 Dudley and Stolton, 2004. 51

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