Resolving land tenure security is essential to deliver forest restoration
Tropical countries are making ambitious commitments to Forest Landscape Restoration with the aim of locking up carbon, conserving biodiversity and benefiting local livelihoods. However, global and national analyses of restoration potential frequently ignore socio-legal complexities which impact both the effectiveness and equitability of restoration. We show that areas with the highest restoration potential are disproportionately found in countries with weak rule of law and frequently in those with substantial areas of unrecognised land tenure. Focussing on Madagascar, at least 67% of the areas with highest restoration potential must be on untitled land, where tenure is often unclear or contested, and we show how unresolved tenure issues are one of the most important limitations on forest restoration. This is likely to be a bigger problem than currently recognized and without important efforts to resolve local tenure issues, opportunities to equitably scale up forest restoration globally are likely to be significantly over-estimated.
© The Author(s) 2023. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article’s Creative Commons license and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ The Version of Scholarly Record of this Article is published in Communications Earth & Environment, 2023, available online at: https://www.nature.com/articles/s43247-023-00847-w . Keywords: environmental studies; forestry; sustainability.
Rakotonarivo, O.S., Rakotoarisoa, M., Rajaonarivelo, H.M. et al. Resolving land tenure security is essential to deliver forest restoration. Commun Earth Environ 4, 179 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1038/s43247-023-00847-w