COP26: Too big to fail
Learn more about TNC Brasil's recommendations to the conference, our agenda and the initiatives presented in Glasgow.
Even before the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published the daunting Sixth Assessment Report (AR6), the 26th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP26) was already slated to be the most significant global meeting of policymakers on climate emergencies since the signing of the Paris Agreement in 2015.
The COVID-19 pandemic caused the postponement of COP26 from 2020 to 2021. Now, science is racing to make up for the lost time in the global policy calendar in a scenario of accelerating extreme weather events.
In recent weeks, important signs of increased aspirations have surfaced, from high-profile financial commitments to China's pledge to end the financing of foreign coal projects. But there is still much to be done if we are to have any chance of keeping the planet's average temperature rise below the 1.5°C threshold.
Given that scenario, we can't risk having COP26 fail in its mission of finishing developing the rules that will be the start of implementing the Paris Agreement.
On the one hand, the costs of inaction on climate are increasingly evident. On the other hand, the opportunities for a green recovery around the world fill us with hope. Ending deforestation, bringing value to standing forests, accelerating the transition to clean energy, recalibrating financial flows, and fully recognizing the potential of nature-based solutions (SbN) is the only possible path to our future.
We have the scientific evidence and public mobilization needed to act in all those areas—we now need the global consensus required to implement policies that will drive those changes. The Nature Conservancy (TNC) Brazil will be present at COP 26 to demand action and present innovative solutions to the climate crisis.
TNC Brasil has been collaborating with partners from all sectors of society on innovative solutions that can gain scale and be replicated worldwide with the necessary speed to face the climate crisis.
Through science, we seek to work using a systemic view of challenges, thinking about ways that protect nature and at the same time improve people's lives. That includes restoring and protecting forests, working to ensure a clean energy future, improving and increasing access to clean water, and promoting food security on a sustainable basis. And conserving and protecting essential ecosystems in conjunction with strengthening the role of Indigenous Peoples and local communities, whose rights need to be safeguarded, must also be part of the plan.
In that regard, TNC Brasil prioritizes four fundamental points that should guide the COP26 negotiations, considering the country's potential and responsibility to that global agenda. They are:
TNC Brazil's Recommendations
1) Nature-Based Solutions
To curb climate change's progress and mitigate the impacts it has produced so far, we must invest in "Nature-Based Solutions" (SbN) and "Natural Climate Solutions" (SCN). These are the most effective ways of removing and sinking greenhouse gases (GHG), and they have great potential for global scalability. Implementing those solutions will help maintain and expand biological and cultural diversity since traditional ways of life are essential allies in keeping forests standing.Brazil can play a significant role in that scenario if it can strengthen measures to radically reduce deforestation and continuously and increasingly encourage the implementation of a development model that values the Forest Restoration Economy.
The Brazilian climate target must include plans and objectives to achieve emission neutrality by 2050 and specific sectorial plans for land-use change, encouraging integrated production systems.
2) Climate financing
The transition toward a green economy will only be possible if investors worldwide rethink where they direct their assets. Placing Nature-Based Solutions (SbN) at the center of investment strategies is essential. Financing good practices and technical assistance is necessary so that medium and small producers in developing countries can restore their land and invest in regenerative agriculture.Therefore, it is urgent that during COP26, negotiators determine the follow-up mechanisms to ensure that investments are aligned with the objectives of the Paris Agreement. Furthermore, establishing the processes and deadlines for the consolidation of funding commitments and the mechanisms that ensure the transparency of funding need also to be actual results of the conference.
3) Carbon Markets
One of the biggest obstacles to starting implementing the Paris Agreement is the global consensus on Article 6 of that commitment. That article deals with the guidelines that allow the trading of carbon credits between different stakeholders. Such definitions need to be provided in the Paris Agreement Rulebook. If there is no agreement on Article 6 guidance in a timely manner, the absence of consensus could perpetuate uncertainty about global carbon trading and limit potential and essential sources for future investments.Negotiators must consider that in addition to looking at specific sectors, it is essential to seek cooperative approaches that ensure consistency and great environmental integrity. The system to be built must be robust and transparent to contemplate and differentiate a set of interconnected, overlapping, and conflicting national priorities, in addition to preventing countries from adopting weaker climate targets so that they can sell more credits.
Therefore, the expectation is that COP26 will bring the regulation of Article 6 of the Paris Agreement on carbon markets so that it might finally enable the mechanism to bring scale to Nature-Based Solutions.
4) Climate Justice
The climate crisis is a global challenge, but there is no denying that its consequences aggravate the situation of populations whose rights are already threatened. Therefore, the negotiators' efforts must guarantee greater racial, age, gender, and social class diversity. Those populations' voices and rights should be guaranteed in the debates on tackling the climate emergency and implementing solutions.That objective should guide all results of the conference, including climate finance, by including among its priorities support for adaptation and mitigation measures that contemplate a fair transition to the development of a low-carbon economy. Guaranteeing rights and assistance to vulnerable populations and, particularly, Indigenous and local peoples and communities is also a must.
November 4, 9:00-10:30 GM
Nature Pavilion - Blue Zone
INDIGENOUS PEOPLES AND LOCAL COMMUNITIES-LED CLIMATE SOLUTIONS
This panel will explore where investment in rights and governance in Indigenous communities supported the implementation of Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities-led Climate Solutions. These presentations will provide common themes and challenges. see the full schedule
November 6, from 10:00 to 11:15
Brazil Climate Action Hub/Blue Zone
UNION4RESTORATION: TNC, WRI BRAZIL, CI AND WWF TOGETHER FOR THE AMAZON
About: To directly contribute to the global movement of the Decade of Ecosystem Restoration, CI, TNC, WRI Brazil, and WWF-Brazil join forces for a common 10-year goal: restoring up to 4 million hectares of forests and landscapes. see the full schedule
November 6, from 13:30 to 14:30 pm
room to be defined
TRANSFORMING LAND-USE SYSTEMS WITH NATURE AND HEALTH
The Nature Conservancy (TNC) was a key partner of this state vision, that includes mechanisms such as Eastern Amazon Fund and the Sustainable Territories platform. see the full schedule
November 7, from 9:00 to 10:00
The University of Glasgow
AMAZONIA IS THE WAY TO OUR FUTURE: BUSINESS AS A FORCE FOR GOOD
The panel will debate the importance of the Post-2020 Biodiversity Framework, not only for an agreement on nature but also for the Paris Agreement. This debate will also examine what we can do to protect the Amazon and prevent. see the full schedule
November 9, from 14:00 to 15:00 pm
room to be defined (side event)
THE IMPORTANCE OF ECOSYSTEM CONSERVATION TO PROVIDE CLEAN AND ENERGY
This event organized by ITAIPU Binacional with the support of UNFCCC will bring together multi-stakeholders to discuss and showcase the importance of ecosystem conservation for the energy sector. see the full schedule
November 9, 16:00 –17:00
room to be defined (side event)
LIVE: WOMEN FOR FORESTS IN BRAZIL
In indigenous lands, riverside communities or in sectors such as agriculture, women play a fundamental role in the conservation of Brazil's forests. TNC Brazil will share the results in more than 30 years of work with women who make a difference. see the full schedule
The Nature Conservancy (TNC) has been working in Brazil for 30 years. Below, find out about some of our main strategies to tackle climate change:
Projects and initiatives
Redirecting the finance system
During the COP26, TNC, the Tropical Forest Alliance (TFA), and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) launched the Financial Innovation for the Amazon, Cerrado, and Chaco initiative (IFACC).
Eight financial institutions and agribusiness companies have announced a US $3 billion commitment—with more than US $200 million in disbursements by 2022—to accelerate deforestation-free soy and livestock production and natural habitat conversion in South America. As a result, those companies became the first IFACC signatories. Learn more here.
Pará state as a leader in the transformation in the Amazon
TNC has defined four priority landscapes around the world as the focus of its work, and the Amazon is one of them, in addition to Kenya, Borneo, and the Appalachians (USA). Among the factors that led TNC to make those choices are the potential those regions have to provide globally significant contributions to our conservation outcomes, their high relevance to biodiversity and carbon, and their potential to inspire new levels of engagement and support.
In the Brazilian Amazon, Pará state is the main region where TNC works. Pará is home to nine percent of the world's forests and, at the same time, is the leading Brazilian state in deforestation and carbon emissions.
TNC works collaboratively and through a systemic approach with Indigenous Peoples, Quilombolas, those in extractivist activities, traditional communities, rural producers, governments, the private sector, and civil society to tackle current challenges that demand integrated and sustainable solutions.
Aligning and integrating public policies
Announced at COP25 in 2019, the Amazon Now State Plan (PEAA in Portuguese) was launched by the government of Pará at an event promoted by TNC. The PEAA is part of a strategy to strengthen subnational management of the Brazilian Amazon and enable the implementation of public policies aimed at a low-carbon economy.
The Plan comprises two crucial pillars: financing—via the Eastern Amazon Fund —and territorial governance—through the Policy for Integrated Action in Sustainable Territories. Learn more about in this article.
Curbing deforestation and generating income in small rural properties
Around 40 percent of deforestation in the Amazon happens in small rural properties, primarily due to extensive and low-technology livestock activities.
But the Forest Cocoa Project has been proving that deforestation is not the only path those producers can take. Cocoa agroforests can generate more income, recover degraded areas, and ensure long-term land sustainability. Learn more about the project that involves more than 300 rural family producers in the Pará municipalities of São Félix do Xingu and Tucumã.
Giving scale to restoration and generating quality carbon credits
TNC, in partnership with Amazon, Inc. and World Agroforestry (ICRAF), launched the Agroforestry and Restoration Accelerator initiative in 2021. The project seeks to generate quality carbon credits, attract investments, and innovate by creating a business model that is scalable and replicable in other regions and can boost agroforestry systems and ecological restoration.
The initiative is committed to engaging up to 3,000 families and will help family farmers who currently have degraded or unproductive areas migrate to agroforestry system arrangements. Those will be based on crops of cocoa and other native Amazon species, such as açaí, which has high market demand and attractive profitability.
Recovering those areas should involve 18,000 hectares and remove 9.6 million tons of carbon from the atmosphere in 30 years, in three territories: Southeastern Pará, the Trans Amazon Highway region, and northeastern Pará. Learn more here.
Ensuring the protection of rivers in partnerships with communities
In collaboration with the Federal University of Western Pará (UFOPA) and the Lower Amazon Fishers' Movement (MOPEBAM), the Tapajós Waters project works in partnership with traditional communities for the conservation of the Tapajós River basin in western Pará. The project aims to contribute to local development, increasing knowledge about the sustainable use of aquatic resources and conserving freshwater biodiversity in the region. Additionally, it supports the organizing of riverine communities, their governance, community management, and territorial planning to expand their participation and voice along with those of other stakeholders in the region.
The main partners and beneficiaries of this project are the riverine communities that practice traditional fishing and depend on the basin's resources for their survival and productive activity. Learn more here.
Remunerating those who help nature provide environmental services
In the Atlantic Forest's Mantiqueira region, TNC promotes and develops the Payment for Environmental Services (PES) model as one of the tools to achieve its restoration and conservation objectives.
One hundred thousand hectares have been restored in the Atlantic Forest, 7,000 of them by TNC. As of 2021, those restored areas removed more than nine million megatons of CO2 from the atmosphere. Learn more.
Planting one billion trees
Through the Restaura Brasil campaign, TNC mobilizes people and companies in a collective movement that supports native-vegetation restoration to restore one billion trees in 400,000 hectares in the country by 2030.
Donate trees and help Brazil achieve its restoration goal at the pace and scale needed by the country and world. Learn more.
Promoting the standing forest economy and supporting traditional peoples and communities
In partnership with the IDB and Natura, TNC recently launched the study "The Bioeconomy of Socio-biodiversity in the State of Pará," which illustrates the size of that market. In 2019 alone, socio-biodiversity in Pará generated a GDP of US $957 million. If the public policies recommended by the study are adopted, the GDP could reach US $30 billion in 2040.
Those data were not considered in official statistics, which don't measure the value of this market in all the links of the chain. More than 70% of Pará's forests are under the management of traditional communities (Indigenous Lands, extractive reserves, Quilombola territories, and conservation units). TNC supports communities so that their economic projects for the sustainable use of natural resources in their territories can be valued and strengthened. Check out the Executive Summary and the complete Study here.
Joint efforts for common objectives
A ONU deu início à Década da Restauração de Ecossistemas e o Brasil tem um enorme potencial para liderar essa agenda no mundo. Pensando nisso, algumas das mais importantes organizações ambientais da sociedade civil que atuam no país decidiram unir esforçospara uma meta comum de 10 anos: restaurar 4 milhões de hectares de florestas na Amazônia, Cerrado e Mata Atlântica. Os escritórios no Brasil da CI, TNC, WRI e WWF estão juntos na União pela Restauração, que terá seu primeiro debate público na COP26, aberto a todos que tenham interesse em se engajar nesta agenda. Saiba mais aqui. A TNC participa e colabora com diversos outros coletivos que têm objetivos convergentes. Entre eles, alguns que lançaram conteúdo específicos para a COP26 como a Coalizão Brasil Clima, Florestas e Agricultura; a Concertação pela Amazônia;e a iniciativa Clima e Desenvolvimento.
The UN started the Decade of Ecosystem Restoration, and Brazil has enormous potential to be a world leader in this agenda. With this in mind, some of the most important environmental organizations of Brazilian civil society decided to join forces toward a common 10-year goal: Restoring 4 million hectares of forests in the Amazon, Cerrado, and Atlantic Forest. The offices of CI, TNC, WRI, and WWF in Brazil are working together in the Union for Restoration. The group will have its first public debate at COP26, which is open to all interested in engaging in this agenda. Learn more here.
TNC participates in and collaborates with other diverse collectives with converging goals. Some have launched COP26-specific content, such as the Brazilian Coalition on Climate, Forests and Agriculture, Amazon Concertation, and the Climate and Development Initiative.