I write this foreword from home. The doors to UNDP’s Headquarters in New York are locked, as are the doors of our offices across the world, for the first time in our history. But that does not mean we are closed for business. In the past three months, I have seen an organization that is more dedicated and vibrant than ever as we work remotely with our partners to tackle the unprecedented impacts of the COVID-19 global pandemic.
Looking back, 2019 seems like a year from a much simpler era. But just like the decade it ended, it was a year of turbulence. City by city, people came onto the streets to protest rising inequality, stretched social services, a deficit of trust and a damaged climate. Today, a few short months later, the same streets are quiet, and life has changed utterly for billions of people on the planet.
The COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare the consequences of building societies on the backs of people who have less; of weak health systems, tattered safety nets, violence against women and digital divides. It, like climate change, offers proof — if proof were still needed — that all life on Earth is connected.
Last year, through an intense period of UN reform, UNDP worked hard to support the people of 170 countries and territories around the world to get on their feet and stay there. We continued to push the boundaries of how we think, deliver, invest and manage as #NextGenUNDP to deliver on our Strategic Plan, reaffirming UNDP’s financial stability and taking steps to make UNDP nimbler and more responsive. Today, as we support the UN System and help countries prepare, respond, and recover in the face of COVID-19, our investments are proving their worth.
The 2019 Human Development Report’s deep dive into the changing faces of inequality sharpened our thinking and action, including on social protection. With nine out of our ten largest programmes in fragile or crisis-affected countries and a new Crisis Bureau in place, our humanitarian and peacebuilding partnerships deepened.
With the Accelerator Lab Network, established across 78 countries in just 12 months, UNDP’s creativity in sourcing local solutions to tackle complexity is now stronger and available to our partner countries and the broader UN Development System. UNDP’s Global Policy Network, remotely connecting 8,800 specialists across the organization and a further 5,000 beyond, and our Digital Strategy, helped to keep our teams operational and our doors ‘open’ during these past months.
In 2019, UNDP demonstrated the importance of economies of scale in tackling the world’s biggest development challenges. Our Climate Promise is an illustration. In September 2019, we promised to support at least 100 countries to raise their climate ambitions within a year. By February 2020, we achieved our target. Our collaboration with the Government of Bangladesh saved nearly two billion workdays by digitalizing access to public services, while in Yemen, UNDP and the World Bank created over 10.7 million workdays of emergency employment and helped to stabilize the local economy.
#NextGenUNDP is designed to achieve integrated results at speed and at scale during both quiet and turbulent times. As always, we are stronger together. That’s why UNDP works with passion and purpose, hand-in-hand with our sister UN agencies under the leadership of the UN Resident Coordinator in the countries we serve and with an increasing array of public and private partners.
All of our skills will be tested as the world charts a course through COVID-19. If inspiration is needed, the 75th anniversary of the United Nations this year should provide it. From shepherding de-colonization to eradicating smallpox, the UN has set the standard for things we take for granted every day.
It is time to write the story of the next 75 years and chart the way to the Future of Development. UNDP is committed to making it one we will be proud to have our children read aloud.
I hope that this snapshot of our progress in 2019 will encourage you to join us.
Working within the General Secretariat of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) since 2009, Dr. Honoré TABUNA is from Congo Brazzaville. He holds a Doctoral Thesis in Botanical Economies from the National Museum of Natural History in Paris and the Chair of Business Management from the National lnstitute of Agronomie Research in Montpellier...
To read: When communities and governments collaborate—latest edition of the Tropical Forest Update; Air your views on the future of forest education—participate in global survey; ITTO and Soka Gakkai to help empower women in Togo through forest restoration…
To read : Joint Communique by the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Ecological transition, The Ministry of Economy and Finance ; Unlocking Sustainable Tropical Timber Market Growth Through Data…
This paper explores three ways that the international community can help create those incentives. First, the international community should prioritize helping countries to capture “socially beneficial” mitigation opportunities that are in their interest, even before climate impacts are considered.
With the COVID-19 crisis raging across the world, 2020 will be the first time in a quarter century that the world’s governments will not meet to coordinate climate action. The postponement of the annual Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change is widely seen as a lost opportunity in the effort to advance the global response to the climate crisis.
To read: Members of the CBFP Scientific and Academic College mobilize around the German CBFP Facilitator Dr. Christian Ruck; EBO FOREST : Press briefing - Opening Statement by the Minister of Forestry and Wildlife; (German) Facilitation of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFP), 2020-2021: First CBFP Donor College Meeting under German Facilitation…
The Prime Minister, Head of Government, by Decree N°2020/3216 of 14 July 2020, authorised the gazetting of a 68,385 hectare portion of the State's Private Estate as a Forest Management Unit known as FMU 07 006. This decision puts a final stop to the debate on this issue which has generated a vast misinformation campaign.
Libreville (Gabon), July 15, 2020 - Experts from member states of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) are in virtual conclave since this morning to decide on the possibility of jumpstarting phase II of the Support PACEBCo from the ashes of PACEBco I.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a powerful reminder of the inextricable link between humans, wildlife and the environment. Most epidemics of zoonoses have their origins in a breakdown in this relationship, resulting from unsustainable exploitation of nature (1).
Berlin, 14 July 2020. Africa Nature Investors Foundation (ANI) joined the membership of the Congo Basin Forests Partnership (CBFP). As part of the accession process, Africa Nature Investors Foundation (ANI) submitted the required documents...
Yaoundé, 23 July 2020 – Greenpeace Africa and local communities denounce a decision by the Government of Cameroon to open up 68,385 hectares of pristine rainforest to logging. The fate of a 65,007 ha zone of Ebo, also threatened with logging, remains unclear and must also be spared from chainsaws.
In particular, most communities clear forests for agriculture and related subsistence activities – such as charcoal making and artisanal logging – to make a living. These are today among the top drivers of forest disturbance.
21 July 2020, Rome - FAO launched today the most comprehensive forestry assessment to date in an innovative and easy-to-use digital format. Available for public viewing, the Global Forest Resources Assessment report (FRA 2020) and its first-ever online interactive dissemination platform...
Despite the environmental cost of using firewood and charcoal for meal preparation and to meet other energy needs, more than 60 percent of families in sub-Saharan Africa have no alternative to wood, making it a significant contributor to forest degradation throughout the region.
WASHINGTON, D.C. JULY 8, 2020: In the most comprehensive report to date on the economic implications of protecting nature, over 100 economists and scientists find that the global economy would benefit from the establishment of far more protected areas on land and at sea than exist today.
Demarcating 30 percent of the planet’s lands and oceans in protected areas by 2030 could be instrumental in tackling the biodiversity, climate and zoonotic crises, according to a new independent report – as well as supporting the global economy.
SUMMARY Despite the Covid-19 pandemic and the national restrictions in place to protect health, significant progress has been made on many ongoing Park projects, including at the craft market, the restaurant at the base of the Park base, and on staff housing in Bomassa and Makao.
On 1 July, China’s newly amended forest law came into effect, marking the first revision of the law in over twenty years. The law comes with a number of significant improvements, aiming to better protect China’s forest resources, promote sustainable development and contribute to the national policy of...
July 2020 - The Belgian Trade for Development Centre (TDC) has launched a call for proposals for African Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) and producer organisations active in sustainable production and trade. Applications must be submitted by 10th September 2020.
IUCN and WCPA are organizing a four-part webinar series aims to strengthen and continue connections amongst protected area practitioners and those involved in the evaluation of management effectiveness for protected areas.
The COVID-19 pandemic is a major challenge to humankind, and is the most serious global public health emergency since the end of World War II. To defeat COVID-19 through greater solidarity and cooperation, and to highlight an even stronger China-Africa community with a shared future, we, Chinese and African leaders, convened an Extraordinary China-Africa Summit on Solidarity Against COVID-19 via video link on 17 June 2020.
In order to enhance the value of its resource, the Gabonese Republic has decided to classify wood processing according to three levels. It should be noted that the levels of wood processing are different from one country to another. The ATIBT association had opted for 3 level.
The Water Mobilisation Project to Enhance Food Security in Maradi, Tahoua and Zinder Regions (PMERSA-MTZ), implemented between 2011 and 2018 in Niger, has sustainably increased agricultural production and productivity and increased food security for nearly nine million residents of this Sahelian country, according to a report by the African Development Bank.
An African Development Bank project to enhance market infrastructure, value addition and rural finance (MIVARF) in Tanzania produced highly satisfactory results, according to a report released by the project team. The project, rolled out in the country between 2012 and 2017 increased the incomes of rural producers and traders threefold.
The African Risk Capacity Insurance Company presented a cheque for $2,126,803 to the Republic of Madagascar to cover anticipated livelihood losses for 600,000 vulnerable Malagasy people due to drought-related crop failures in the recent farming season.
The report shows that the burden of malnutrition in all its forms continues to be a challenge. There has been some progress for child stunting, low birthweight and exclusive breastfeeding, but at a pace that is still too slow. Childhood overweight is not improving and adult obesity is on the rise in all regions.
In Cuba, ecosystem-based adaptation is a cost-effective way to preserve and restore natural habitats and protect coastal communities. “We ourselves were destroying this world, but now we have a project of environmental education, we work with all the schools and are linked to the population.
The world’s tourism sector could lose at least $1.2 trillion, or 1.5% of the global gross domestic product (GDP), having been placed at a standstill for nearly four months due to the coronavirus pandemic, UNCTAD said in a report published on 1 July.
Biodiversity underpins 14 out of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). However, a recent study showed that only 20% of the countries analysed mention biodiversity as a national priority for sustainable development in their Voluntary National Reviews (VNRs) of their progress towards the SDGs.
9 July 2020, Rome - EcorNaturaSí and the Mountain Partnership Secretariat, hosted by FAO, today joined forces to better the lives of people living in rural areas and fragile ecosystems, such as mountains, forests and islands, and develop more inclusive food and agriculture systems.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread around the globe, forests and forest communities are feeling the pressure. Forests are already a source of food, income, fuel and shelter for hundreds of millions of people around the world.
15 July 2020 FAO, the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) and the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) today launched a comprehensive survey on forest education across the world.