We really need to kick the carbon habit. 
- Sir David Attenborough
Accelerated climate change, biodiversity loss, pollution and land degradation present a real and present danger to the natural resource base on which we depend for our survival. Numerous studies show that these increasingly existential threats are affecting societies in ways that are much more severe and multifaceted, than previously predicted. Nature-based solutions such as the sustainable management of watersheds, restoration of forests, or mangrove conservation offer systemic responses to today's complex developmental challenges.
By harnessing the power of nature, this transdisciplinary research cluster explores entry points for integrating sustainability targets across a range of sectors, including agriculture and food systems, health, and territorial development.

Topics

Ecosystem-based Adaptation

Ecosystem-based Adaptation

Promoting ecosystem approaches for managing social, economic and ecological priorities

There is no doubt that we need to drastically cut greenhouse gas emissions to avoid catastrophic and irreversible impacts on society and nature. In addition to concerted decarbonisation efforts, nature plays a vital role in tackling the climate crisis. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, oceans, forests, and other ecosystems currently absorb more than half of man-made CO2- emissions. Similarly, the Intergovermental Science Policy Platform on Ecosystem Services has underscored the vital role that healthy ecosystems play in reducing vulnerability to climate-related extreme events and other economic, social and environmental shocks and disasters.
Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) is a human- and nature-centred approach to climate change adaptation and sustainable development that focuses on safeguarding the resilience of biodiversity and ecosystem services. As such, EbA offers nature-based solutions for people and ecosystems to cope with the risks and impacts of climate change. 
A growing number of studies highlight EbA as a cost-effective, scalable and systemic, approach to address the negative impacts of land degradation, biodiversity loss, and climate change, and helping societies respond to food insecurity, poverty and other challenges.

Ocean Governance

Ocean Governance

Strengthening ecosystem-based approaches to regional marine governance

Marine ecosystems, resources, and species do not respect national borders. The effects of marine pollution and degradation are felt by us all. To conserve, and sustainably use ocean and marine ecosystems therefore requires integrated, and coherent approaches.
By looking at marine ecosystems in their totality, policy makers can ensure that interventions are well aligned in order to address the cumulative impacts of unsustainable human activities.
An ecosystem-based approach to ocean governance means, however, that individual states cannot do it alone. Multiple countries must work together to conserve and sustainably use their oceans, coasts, and marine resources. Regional organisations have an important role to play in creating this institutional landscape for the conservation and sustainable use of marine resources.

Soil Organic Carbon

Soil Organic Carbon

Leveraging carbon sequestration initiatives to enhance food security

The potential of land-based mitigation can be further unlocked by scaling up projects that encourage, enhance and incentivise sustainable agricultural land management, land restoration and soil organic carbon sequestration practices and activities.
Looking beyond their climate mitigation potential, our work on soil organic carbon is dedicated to identifying the conditions under which such initiatives can contribute to enhance food security and biodiversity. We investigate the challenges involved in operationalising carbon sequestration projects, exploring social and technical innovations that can enhance the benefits of such schemes for smallholder farmers, as well as reducing transaction costs.
Among other potential solutions, our research seeks to bring together diverse actors involved in remote sensing and other digital technologies to enhance the monitoring of carbon sequestration activities and open up pathways for recognising the contributions of smallholder farmers, pastoralists, indigenous communities, and other marginalised groups, in carbon markets.

News

Ecosystem-based adaptation can help India address its hunger problem
Media Coverage

Ecosystem-based adaptation can help India address its hunger problem

TMG's work with partners in India cited as a source of hope following its recent fall on the Global Hunger Index
Who benefits? SEWOH Lab study explores farmers’ engagement in carbon sequestration schemes
Blog Post

Who benefits? SEWOH Lab study explores farmers’ engagement in carbon sequestration schemes

Findings from research on carbon sequestration in agricultural soils
What next for the Marine Regions Forum? Workshop report
News

What next for the Marine Regions Forum? Workshop report

Planning begins for the Marine Regions Forum conference, 2022 / 2023
"Land tenure rights are critical for soil protection"
Media Coverage

"Land tenure rights are critical for soil protection"

Forests News reports on a COP26 side event on scaling and financing ecosystem-based adaptation
Recap: TMG and partners at COP26
News

Recap: TMG and partners at COP26

TMG fostered discussions on nature-based solutions and responses to ongoing crises
Conserve and restore peatlands to slash global emissions
News

Conserve and restore peatlands to slash global emissions

UNEP report proposes new investment to prioritise protection of peatlands

Events

Publications

A review of the participation of smallholder farmers in land-based carbon payment schemes

Working Paper

A review of the participation of smallholder farmers in land-based carbon payment schemes

Yvonne Tamba, Joshua Wafula, Christine Magaju, Ermias Aynekulu, Leigh Winowiecki, Bruno St-Jacques, Larissa Stiem-Bhatia, Cristina Arias-Navarro

This paper highlights approaches for smallholder engagement, identifies key barriers to participation, and outlines options to enhance farmers’ agency.

Research for Change: Towards a transformative research strategy for climate-resilient agriculture in Germany

Report

Research for Change: Towards a transformative research strategy for climate-resilient agriculture in Germany

Christine Chemnitz, Jes Weigelt, Corinna Enders, Anna Häring, Folkhard Isermeyer, Martin Kunisch, Alexander Müller, Susanne Neubert, Henrike Rieken, Rolf Sommer, Friedhelm Taube, Jens Tuider, Hubert Wiggering

A paper proposing elements of a national research strategy for a transformation of the German agricultural sector towards climate resilience

Ecosistemas para la resiliencia - Propiciando la adaptación dirigida por la comunidad: Cinco conceptos claves de Guatemala y la India

Report

Ecosistemas para la resiliencia - Propiciando la adaptación dirigida por la comunidad: Cinco conceptos claves de Guatemala y la India

Larissa Stiem-Bhatia, Marai El Fassi, Devaraj de Condappa, Jes Weigelt, Lucía Benavides, Wangu Mwangi, Edgar Selvin Pérez Pérez, Amelia Coj Sajvin, Rita De León, Marcella D’Souza, Arjuna Srinidhi, María Amalia Porta, Ana Victoria Rodríguez

Un informe que pone de relieve las condiciones favorables en las que la Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas puede aplicarse eficazmente a nivel comunitario

Ecosystems for resilience, Enabling community-led adaptation : Five key insights from Guatemala and India

Report

Ecosystems for resilience, Enabling community-led adaptation : Five key insights from Guatemala and India

Larissa Stiem-Bhatia, Marai El Fassi, Devaraj de Condappa, Jes Weigelt, Lucía Benavides, Wangu Mwangi, Edgar Selvin Pérez Pérez, Amelia Coj Sajvin, Rita De León, Marcella D’Souza, Arjuna Srinidhi, María Amalia Porta, Ana Victoria Rodríguez

A policy paper highlighting the enabling conditions under which ecosystem-based adaptation can be effectively implemented at community level

Marine Regions Forum: An international stakeholder forum to strengthen  regional ocean governance

Report

Marine Regions Forum: An international stakeholder forum to strengthen regional ocean governance

Dr. Barbara Neumann, Sebastian Unger, Laura Weiand, Dr. Julien Rochette, Glen Wright, Alexander Müller

A discussion of the potential of the Marine Regions Forum to facilitate progress in ocean governance and sustainability transformations

Advancing Ocean Governance in Marine Regions Through Stakeholder Dialogue Processes

Article

Advancing Ocean Governance in Marine Regions Through Stakeholder Dialogue Processes

Laura Weiand, Sebastian Unger, Julien Rochette, Alexander Müller and Barbara Neumann

The poor state of the ocean and the transboundary nature of the marine environment require bold action by States coordinated across sectors and territorial boundaries in order to deal with the manifold challenges the ocean is facing—and with it humankind.

From Watershed Development to Ecosystem-based Adaptation: A journey to systemic resilience

Working Paper

From Watershed Development to Ecosystem-based Adaptation: A journey to systemic resilience

Devaraj de Condappa, Larissa Stiem-Bhatia, Arjuna Srinidhi, Marcella D’Souza, Dada Dadas and Crispino Lobo

This report synthesises the findings of case study research in two villages in Maharashtra, India, examining the effectiveness of Ecosystem-based Adaptation measures and the conditions that enabled its implementation at community level.

EbA Info Brief India #6: Why Ecosystem-based Adaptation for Water Management?

Info Brief

EbA Info Brief India #6: Why Ecosystem-based Adaptation for Water Management?

TMG Research

General challenges to water management in Maharashtra are described in this info brief, followed by EbA benefits for a systemic approach to water management and opportunities for upscaling EbA in water management.

EbA Info Brief India #4: An Ecosystem-based approach to Climate Resilient Agriculture

Info Brief

EbA Info Brief India #4: An Ecosystem-based approach to Climate Resilient Agriculture

TMG Research

This info brief describes the challenges to agriculture in the state, the benefits of using EbA and identifies opportunities for upscaling the approach in the agriculture sector.

EbA Info Brief India #5: Livestock and Ecosystem-based Adaptation

Info Brief

EbA Info Brief India #5: Livestock and Ecosystem-based Adaptation

TMG Research

This info brief describes the challenges to livestock management in the state of Maharashtra, the symbiotic role of livestock in ecosystems and identifies opportunities for upscaling EbA in the livestock sector.

EbA Info Brief India #2: Strengthening Biodiversity to Enhance Ecosystem-based Adaptation

Info Brief

EbA Info Brief India #2: Strengthening Biodiversity to Enhance Ecosystem-based Adaptation

TMG Research

This info brief describes the link between conserving biodiversity and ecosystem-based adaptation, explores the challenges for biodiversity management in Maharashtra, India, and identifies opportunities for upscaling EbA in biodiversity management.

EbA Info Brief India #3: Managing Land and Forests – the value of ecosystem-based adaptation

Info Brief

EbA Info Brief India #3: Managing Land and Forests – the value of ecosystem-based adaptation

TMG Research

This info brief describes the challenges for land and forest management in Maharashtra, India, the benefit of using ecosystem-based adaptation and identifies opportunities for upscaling EbA in the land and forest sectors.

Desarrollo de indicadores de Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas (AbE)

Technical Guide

Desarrollo de indicadores de Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas (AbE)

TMG Research, WWF, ADIMI

El presente informe tiene como finalidad documentar el análisis realizado a la matriz de medidas y criterios AbE, y a los indicadores proporcionados por el Comité de Indicadores del Grupo Técnico deAdaptación basado en Ecosistemas (GTAbE).

La Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas: una solución integral para reducir la vulnerabilidad ante el cambio climático en Guatemala

Report

La Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas: una solución integral para reducir la vulnerabilidad ante el cambio climático en Guatemala

Fundación Defensores de la Naturaleza

Reporte del Primer Foro Nacional de AbE en Guatemala, Noviembre 2019. La Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas: Una solución integral para reducir la vulnerabilidad ante el cambio climático en Guatemala.

Alianzas entre las personas y la naturaleza

Info Brief

Alianzas entre las personas y la naturaleza

Marai El Fassi, Larissa Stiem-Bhatia, Ana Victoria Rodríguez, María Amalia Porta, Amelia Coj

En este resumen informativo se argumenta en favor del enfoque de múltiples actores para escalar la Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas (AbE) al cambio climático.

Scaling Ecosystem-based Adaptation to Climate Change in Maharashtra, India - An Analysis of Policies and Programmes

Working Paper

Scaling Ecosystem-based Adaptation to Climate Change in Maharashtra, India - An Analysis of Policies and Programmes

Marcella D’Souza, Arjuna Srinidhi, Shreya Banerjee, Abha Indurkar, Eshwer Kale, Larissa Stiem-Bhatia, Naman Gupta

This paper identifies a number of opportunities for scaling-up ecosystem-based adaptation actions in Maharahstra, India.

Declaración sobre la importancia de la Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas (AbE)

Brochure

Declaración sobre la importancia de la Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas (AbE)

Multiple Actors

In Guatemala, representatives from the public and private sector, academic and civil society signed a Declaration recognizing the importance of upscaling Ecosystem-based Adaptation (EbA) to climate change nationally.

Guatemala, un país megadiverso, con potencial para enfrentar el cambio climático

Brochure

Guatemala, un país megadiverso, con potencial para enfrentar el cambio climático

TMG Research

La Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas (AbE) es el conjunto de estrategias, políticas y prácticas destinadas a la protección y restauración de los servicios de los ecosistemas para reducir la vulnerabilidad de la sociedad frente al cambio climático.

Towards a Contemporary Vision for the Global Seafloor

Report

Towards a Contemporary Vision for the Global Seafloor

Sabine Christiansen, Duncan Currie, Kate Houghton, Alexander Müller, Manuel Rivera, Oscar Schmidt, Prue Taylor, Sebastian Unger

Half of the global ocean floor is legally set aside from State or private ownership as a common heritage whose control and management are vested in mankind as a whole.

Driving Transformative Change - Foreign Affairs and the 2030 Agenda

Working Paper

Driving Transformative Change - Foreign Affairs and the 2030 Agenda

CDP Worldwide, Center on International Cooperation (CIC) - NYU, Chatham House, International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), TMG Think Tank for Sustainability

The SDGs set out a powerful vision for a better world, but action since 2015 is not delivering that promise. Foreign policy practitioners are in a unique position to help advocate for and assist in the implementation of the SDGs.

Nutriendo a la naturaleza: Identificando iniciativas de Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas (AbE) para construir apoyos políticos y sociales que faciliten la implementación de la AbE a mayor escala en Guatemala

Article

Nutriendo a la naturaleza: Identificando iniciativas de Adaptación basada en Ecosistemas (AbE) para construir apoyos políticos y sociales que faciliten la implementación de la AbE a mayor escala en Guatemala

Marai El Fassi, Chelsea Jones

A pesar de la implementación de una multitud de proyectos de adaptación al cambio climático, Guatemala continúa siendo altamente vulnerable a shocks climáticos.

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