Key success factors
There were several reasons for the success of the restoration initiative.
• Implementation had the active participation of the local community; i.e., it was community- led restoration.
• Restoration produced short- and long-term economic and environmental benefits.
• It systematically included women, girls and youth in restoration activities.
Key success factors
Valuable lessons can be learned from smallholder farmers who have successfully protected and regenerated tree cover across agricultural landscapes in Senegal, with minimal reliance on tree nurseries, seedling distribution or tree planting. In the process, they have restored soil fertility to sustainably increase agricultural production.
Global strategies to halt the dual crises of biodiversity loss and climate change are often formulated separately, even though they are interdependent and risk failure if pursued in isolation. The Global Safety Net maps how expanded nature conservation addresses both overarching threats.
Since the mid-1980s, the positive impacts of these simple, cost-efficient water harvesting techniques become clear, following their increasingly widespread adoption. Their use has allowed smallholders to reverse land degradation, improve soil fertility, sustainably increase crop production, achieve food security, and create more productive, diverse and resilient farming systems.
In the above initiatives, self-motivated populations increased food security and reduced vulnerabilities to climatic shocks by restoring and sustainably managing local forest resources. To regenerate agroforestry parklands, farmers built on traditional systems to increase on-farm tree density and convert degraded lands to densely wooded savannas.
Restoration is more complex than just planting trees. It requires that farmers, rural communities, businesses, and government agencies—all with different interests—unite behind a shared vision. Establishing common goals and measuring progress facilitates deeper collaboration among diverse actors.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were conceived at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, held in Rio de Janeiro in 2012 (Rio + 20), and adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in September 2015. They are part of a larger framework, namely the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
As a farmer in northern Kenya, I came to understand the importance of dryland restoration. After moving to Kaijaido country in the south, I started an initiative to restore the land, increase food security and reduce poverty, supported by a grant from the East African Community with various activities supported by FAO and Yale University.
Land use and climate change are recognized as two major drivers affecting surface streamflow. On the Chinese Loess Plateau, implementation of several land restoration projects has changed land cover in recent decades. The main objectives of this study were to understand how streamflow evolved on the Loess Plateau and how land use and climate change have contributed to this change.
‘Over the past three decades hundreds of thousands of farmers in Burkina Faso and Niger, on the fringes of the Sahara Desert, have transformed large swathes of the region’s arid landscape into productive agricultural land, improving food security for about three million people. Once-denuded landscapes are now home to abundant trees, crops, and livestock.'