Durban Declaration: 2050 vision for forests and forestry
Forests are critical to achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) says the Durban declaration adopted at the World Forestry Congress. It calls for the forests of the future to be "fundamental" for food security and improved livelihoods.
The world's forests must be recognized as "more than trees", the XIV World Forestry Congress meeting in Durban, South Africa, concluded. Instead, forests hold vast potential to play a decisive role in ending hunger, improving livelihoods and combating climate change. The largest gathering on forests this decade set out its vision of how forests and forestry should look in 2050, adopting the Durban Declaration after a week of debate. The vision calls for the forests of the future to be "fundamental" for food security and improved livelihoods. Forests and trees must also be integrated with other land uses such as agriculture in order to address the causes of deforestation and conflict over land, according to the declaration. Finally, sustainably managed forests must be an "essential solution" to combating climate change, optimizing their ability to absorb and store carbon while also providing other environmental services.