ITTO urges more investment in tropical forests, as 16 agencies commit to action

19 September 2023

The Collaborative Partnership on Forests called for urgent global action to unlock the potential of forests for people and the planet. Photo: Fundación Natura

19 September 2023: ITTO Executive Director Sheam Satkuru called for “substantive investment and cross-sectoral cooperation” in tropical forests, joining the leaders of 15 other international bodies in issuing the Joint Call to Action for Forests towards 2030, in which they commit to strengthening efforts to fully unlock the contributions of forests to sustainable development.

The Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF) made the Joint Call to Action at UN headquarters in New York, where world leaders are meeting at the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) Summit and the Climate Ambition Summit under the auspices of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). The CPF comprises 16 international bodies with major programmes on forests.

“We are deeply concerned about multiple interlinked global challenges, particularly in developing countries and for the poorest and most vulnerable, as well as their impact on forests, including growing risks of wildfires and droughts,” the CPF said in the Joint Call.

The CPF welcomed the increased recognition of the importance of forests in achieving the SDGs and the significant progress made towards better conservation, restoration and sustainable use of the world’s forests.

“Time is not our side, however,” said the CPF.

In the Joint Call, the CPF committed to strengthening “our shared efforts” in four key focal areas: 1) implementation and action; 2) data, science and innovation; 3) finance for forests; and 4) communication and awareness-raising.

Ms Satkuru, who made a statement during the CPF event to launch the Joint Call, said the need for sustainable development is most pronounced in the tropics.

“When managed sustainably, tropical forests provide livelihoods, conserve soil and water, filter air, prevent land degradation and desertification, and reduce the risk of floods, landslides, drought and other disasters,” she said.

But Ms Satkuru cautioned that the ability of the CPF and ITTO to escalate impact is limited by the modest funding available for forestry, especially tropical forestry.

“Through this Joint CPF Call for Action, ITTO urges substantive investment and cross-sectoral cooperation that enables tropical forests to generate value compared to other land uses,” she said. “This is critical, or we stand to lose them. Now is the time to recalibrate our collective efforts to unlock the full potential of tropical forests for the benefit of people and the planet. We must let the world know we are accelerating the Sustainable Development Agenda 2030.”

Watch the video produced for launching the CPF Joint call to action for forests towards 2030.

Download the CPF Joint call to action for forests towards 2030