Stories we loved the week of July 10, 2016:
UN Forum on Sustainable Development Goals Begins – UN News Centre
From July 11-20, the United Nations Headquarters in New York is hosting the first UN High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF), a gathering of country, civil society, and private sector representatives to advance efforts to achieve the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in the UN 2030 Agenda adopted last year. The event’s theme, “Leaving No One Behind,” emphasizes the integrated and inclusive nature of the SDG framework. HLPF activities include building national ownership of the 2030 Agenda, incorporating the SDGs into national development plans, and mobilizing implementation through addressing barriers and challenges, highlighting opportunities, and harnessing research and cutting-edge thinking in the international community.
Landscape Approaches in the Tropics – Global Change Biology
“Focusing on the tropics, [the authors] systematically reviewed the literature to: (i) disentangle the historical development and theory behind the framework of the landscape approach and how it has progressed into its current iteration, (ii) establish lessons learned from previous land management strategies, (iii) determine the barriers that currently restrict implementation of the landscape approach and (iv) provide recommendations for how the landscape approach can contribute towards the fulfillment of the goals of international policy processes. This review suggests that, despite some barriers to implementation, a landscape approach has considerable potential to meet social and environmental objectives at local scales while aiding national commitments to addressing ongoing global challenges.”
Emile Frison and Fabrice DeClerck make the case that agriculture should focus on diversified, multifunctional agroecological systems rather than high input, simplified conventional approaches. Land, water, and biodiversity stewardship need to be improved, with attention to how land is farmed, soil conservation, and pollinator protection. Better research, communication, and measurement are needed to support this transition.
Why Insects Are Declining – Yale Environment 360
“Insect populations are declining dramatically in many parts of the world, recent studies show. Researchers say various factors, from monoculture farming to habitat loss, are to blame for the plight of insects, which are essential to agriculture and ecosystems.”
Featured image: “Rice production in Eastern Uruguay” by Neil Palmer/CIAT, on Flickr.