On 21 March the world celebrates the International Day of Forests (IDF) and this year, the celebration will address the theme “Sustainable Forests and Cities”, an opportunity to raise awareness about the importance of taking local action to protect forests and trees. Regional governments, together with the cities, are key actors in the development of actions and policies to adapt and mitigate the impacts of climate change in the territories. Forestry policies can help to maintain and increase biodiversity, protect watersheds, improve air quality and health of people and contribute to a greener economy.
Many of nrg4SD members are already taking action. For example, Azuay, one of the founding members of the RegionsAdapt initiative -created back in 2015- acts together with Jalisco (Mexico) as coordinator of the Working Group on Forestry, Protected Areas and Biodiversity of that initiative. In addition, Azuay develops a project on Reforestation based on land use planning. The Province of Azuay is located in the South center of Ecuador in the Andean highlands, where mountains can reach 4,500 m (14,800 ft) above sea level, mostly in the Cajas National Park.
The first step in any reforestation program is the operation of forest nurseries and Azuay has two of them, one in the canton of Santa Isabel and another one in Cuenca (its capital). Besides, Azuay has implemented a Reforestation Project that is composed of three stages.
The first step in any reforestation program is the operation of forest nurseries and Azuay has two of them, one in the canton of Santa Isabel and another one in Cuenca (its capital city).
Besides, Azuay has implemented a Reforestation Project that consists of three stages:
- The first stage is the protection of water sources, which works mainly in areas where water sources are recharged for irrigations systems and drinking water systems. In addition, for this project the Government of Azuay uses only native plants, with a special focus on the “queñua or quewiña” (polylepis reticulate), an emblematic species of Azuay.
- The second stage is the silvo-pastoral and agro-pastoral program, which consists on planting species that shade livestock, crops and provide soil protection.
- The third stage is the program on forestry production, which uses fast growing timber species such as pine or cypress.
Furthermore, Azuay recently implemented the program “Boosting the fruit production”, which consists on delivering small quantities of fruit plants such as zarzuma, greengages or peaches to communities, with the aim of precisely encouraging home vegetable gardens.
One of the Province’s greatest achievements was the 2017 report, which indicated that 350.000 plants were delivered to the beneficiaries and 14 out of the 15 cantons of Azuay were involved in this Reforestation Project.
It is important to highlight that all these programs are carried out properly depending on the type of the soil and its use, that is, taking into consideration where each species can be planted.
Take part in the International Day of Forests and share your regional government efforts
- Watch and share the International Day of Forests video 2018 (English, Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Russian, Spanish).
- Take part in the International Day of Forests 2018 and show the world your actions.
- Organize events celebrating forests – tree plantings, symposiums, art exhibitions, or a photo competition.
- Don’t forget to share your actions with us @nrg4SD through twitter, using the hashtag #MembersInAction so we can share it with our community and friends.