DAR ES SALAAM: The Restoration Initiative (TRI) of countries and consortium partners will come up with workable resolutions on how to develop economies sustainably and to grow the food that is needed.
The Vice President’s Office Permanent Secretary, Ms Maria Maganga said this while opening the five day workshop on TRI global learning in Dar es Salaam on Tuesday.
“The challenge we are all grappling with in essence is how to develop our economies sustainably, how to grow the food that is needed and to provide the services required by growing populations without sacrificing in the process the biodiversity and ecosystem services on which the economy and people’s well-being depends,” said Ms Maganga.
The 10 TRI countries and consortium partners at the global level will discuss the global efforts, address landscape degradation and related environmental challenges.
The TRI project which is under a global programme is implemented by 10 countries including the host Tanzania.
Others are Kenya, Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic, Cameroon, Sao Tome and Principe, Guinea Bisau, Myanmar, as well as Asian countries including Pakistan and China.
The programme is geared at improving people’s livelihoods through the restoration of degraded and deforested landscapes around the world.
Ms Maganga said Tanzania is experiencing different significant levels of land degradation in the form of deforestation, loss of vegetation cover, soil erosion and loss of biodiversity.
Ms Maganga said the TRI Tanzania child project seeks to support the implementation of an integrated ecosystem management approach for landscape restoration and biodiversity conservation and enhance community livelihood.
She said despite endowment and richness in nature, like others Tanzania faces several challenges that threaten the livelihoods of the people, the national economy and biodiversity.
She said the country is losing an estimated 469,000 hectare of forest area per year, which is equivalent to over 43 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) per year and land degradation translates to an annual economic value of 10.2 billion US dollars.
The PS said that Tanzania is one of the mega rich biodiversity hotspots in the world with about 14,000 known important plant and animal species.
It is among the top 12 countries with high biodiversity and among 15 countries with the highest number of endemic species.
On her part the IUCN Global Head of the Forest and Grasslands Team Ms Carole Saint-Laurent said an essential part of TRI is the continuous exchange and learning between the different country teams which implement the child projects on the ground and on the other hand the demand-driven support of the global supports organisations.
“This interaction allows the TRI community to exchange knowledge, information and adaptive learning while providing targeted capacity development opportunities,” said Ms Saint-Laurent.
She said the programme will reflect on and identify opportunities to increase the visibility of TRI’s impact.
It will also strengthen the capacity of national TRI project teams on selected topics (best practices, finance, policy), identify support needs for 2024, and facilitate practical cooperation among TRI countries and the global team.
As part of the country’s commitment and ambition to strengthen the enabling environment for landscape restoration and biodiversity conservation, Tanzania launched a new National Environmental Policy (2022) and National Environmental Master Plan for Strategic Interventions (2023) that define environmental conservation and restoration objectives, interventions, and hotspots.
The National forest and landscape restoration strategy is being finalised. The strategy will guide efforts towards the realisation of restoration-related countries that are critically needed.
The TRI project is for five years which started in 2021.