As Canada welcomed the world to the COP 15 (Conference of the Parties) biodiversity conference in Montreal, on this past 12 December 2022 the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, announced an investment of CAD$18.7 million over 4 years in support of Scaling-up Nature-Based Leadership Platforms. Through the proven partnerships of the International Model Forest Network in official development assistance (ODA)–eligible countries, this investment will support efforts to scale up forest and landscape restoration, enable inclusive landscape governance and equip the next generation of forest leaders to address the twin crises of climate change and biodiversity loss.
The investment represents an allocation of Canada’s five-year $5.3-billion climate finance commitment made in 2021 and toward Canada’s commitment that 20 percent of these funds go toward nature-based climate solutions and projects that contribute biodiversity co-benefits.
This investment in the International Model Forest Network will not only help support developing countries in their transition to low-carbon, climate-resilient, nature-positive and inclusive sustainable development but also contribute in part to delivering on Canada’s commitments under the Global Forest Finance Pledge and the Forests and Leaders’ Partnership.
There is no solution to climate change and terrestrial biodiversity loss that does not involve healthy forest ecosystems. Forest ecosystems and how we sustainably manage forests are a key, nature-based solution to many issues, including climate mitigation, biodiversity loss and increased efforts in conservation.
“The concerns that inspired the International Model Forest Network 30 years ago have become increasingly relevant in 2022. Inclusive best practices and shared governance approaches to natural resource management are an important part of a collaborative, international effort to fight climate change and biodiversity and habitat loss. Through this investment, we are advancing our commitment to international climate finance, restoring important lands and forests and helping to support the next generation of forest leaders,” says the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources.