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The first session was opened by Mr Manoj Kumar Rai, under-
secretary, Ministry of Environm...
of 10 Billion. Concluding to the solutions, “It is time to reverse
the trends, and find the opportunity that comes with ev...
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Bulletin d'informations de la Société Civile à la COP 14 de la Convention des Nations Unies pour la lutte contre la désertification

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  1. 1. WELCOME TO COP14 FROM THE WORLD The first session was opened by Mr Manoj Kumar Rai, under- secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Government of India. Then the welcoming speech was given by the COP host CSO, Mr. Bhawani Shankar Kusum, president, Gram Bharati Samiti. He welcomed everyone in India as India being the land of Mahatma Gandhi, Buddha and Mahaveer. Further, he enlightened on the alarming situation of land degradation, recurrent droughts and crisis of safe drinking water in many countries and also about severe amazon fires. He discussed on the importance of vulnerable groups such as women and the youths who should be endogenous to the issues. INTRODUCTION OF THE PANELLISTS AND DELEGATES He welcomed the CSO panellists, Valentin, Jiajia, Nathalie, Octavio and Emmanuel. Ms. Jiajia elaborated on the functions, activities, recommendation and involvement of UNCCD and CSOs. Followed by her was Ms. Nathalie who talked about land degradation and on the five priorities of the CSOs. Mr. Octavio focused mainly on the agenda of UNCCD. The welcome session was followed by a brief introduction of the people present in the room that included country they came from and the organization that they represent. The panellists presented on the functions, objectives, initiatives and way forward of the UNCCD. To discuss on the recommendations to the five priorities by the CSOs, an open discussion took place where several ideas came forth. Mr. Hemant from Sri Lanka emphasized on the importance and need of Centre for environmental justice. Mr. Patrice urged the need of increased participation in the UNCCD. Ms. Aminetou Bilal asked for a broader approach rather than considering just the recent forest fires in Brazil. CSOs CAN SHAKE AND SHAPE To increase the participation from everyone, the delegates were divided into 13 teams to discuss their roles corresponding to the theme of the team and to discuss on the recommendations on the five priorities. The working groups consisted of COP/COW, CRIC, CST contact groups along with International Dialogue groups discussed important matters like ‘value-based approach to land’, ‘healthy land, healthy people’ and ‘boosting sustainable value chains for land - based business.’ Parallelly, deliberations on open dialogue systems consisting of topics like ‘land tenure’ and ‘intergenerational cooperation’ were discussed upon. Groups were also made to discuss parallel round table discussions which talked about ‘fostering global movement for ecosystem restoration’, ‘urban communities’ and ‘land, climate and renewable energy.’ After this discussion, Mr. Valentin introduced the Executive Secretary of the UNCCD, Mr. Ibrahim Thiaw who congratulated the CSOs on the completion of 25 years of the UNCCD. Along with that, he stressed on the importance of land in a time when the world population is about to hit a peak PUBLISHED FOR 2019 UNCCD COP-14 CSO NEWSLETTER eco
  2. 2. of 10 Billion. Concluding to the solutions, “It is time to reverse the trends, and find the opportunity that comes with every challenge, because while land degradation is a challenge, land restoration is an opportunity.” His participation in the session was related to answering the questions regarding the role that they could play towards achieving the ultimate goals of 2030 set by the UNCCD. CSO PRIORITIES AS PER CRIC 2017  Recognition by policy makers, financial institutions and others that community-led initiatives are contributing to LDN  Land tenure security of communities in general, and of women, young people and vulnerable groups specifically must be secured through a UNCCD COP14 decision on implementation of VGGTs  Participation of civil society and especially women’s and youth groups throughout the decision-making processes regarding Land Degradation Neutrality target and National Drought Plans is crucial to guarantee sustainability  Finances must be accessible and appropriate for civil society organizations supporting communities especially women and young people in achieving LDN and/or monitoring the implementation of LDN projects  Transform our society so as to achieve greater sustainability and equity, especially gender equity. EXPECTATIONS – 2nd SEPTEMBER The expectation from the session on the 2nd of September is the discussions related to the agendas discussed on the previous day. The opening ceremony by the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India will also take place in the afternoon, thus giving the leadership of the conference in the hands of India for the upcoming two years. The sessions would resume as per schedule and there will also be several side events that can be viewed on the UNCCD website. GANDHIVAN SHOULD BE REPLICATED WITH WASTELANDS In the year of Gandhi 150 Around 69% of India falls under drylands. Soil degradation in India is estimated to be 147 million hectares of land due to various factors i.e. water erosion, acidification, flooding, wind erosion and salinity. This is extremely serious because India supports 18% of the world's human population and 15% livestock population, but has only 2.4% of the world's land area. Despite its small proportional land area, India ranks second worldwide in farm output. Gram Bharati Samiti (GBS) has created ‘Gandhivan’, a forest in the name of Mahatma Gandhi consisting of more than one hundred thousand trees of various species, over a piece of infertile, uncultivable, barren and sandy wasteland in District Jaipur. As India is celebrating Gandhi’s 150th birthday and number of programs and events are being launched by the Government of India on this occasion, we would like to request the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Government of India to create ‘Gandhivan’, Forest in the name of Gandhi in every state or every district in India. A huge amount of infertile, uncultivable waste lands is lying unused in all the developing countries. In India itself 467,021.16 sq. km is lying as wasteland. It should be brought under forestation in collaboration with CSO/NGOs and local village communities in place of allotting for any commercial use. Also, we would like to request: 1. As the women are greater part of combating drought, land degradation and desertification and shoulder lots of cultivation and household responsibilities, special focus should be made on women’s involvement in the UNCCD process. CSO/NGO could play a vital role in this regard. 2. CSOs and particularly the women should be involved in all stages of implementation of UNCCD in general and LDN.