Ecosystems and their biodiversity underpin economic growth, sustainable development and human wellbeing. Yet the loss of biodiversity continues, resulting in serious reductions in ecosystem goods and services, negatively impacting economic prosperity and environmental sustainability. Overexploitation of natural resources throughout centuries has widely disrupted the equilibrium within ecological systems, driving changes of ecosystems worldwide. Earth’s ecosystems are degrading as a result of damage, unsustainable development and a failure to invest and reinvest in their productivity, health and sustainability. The well-being of the world population in the coming decades will in large part depend on conservation and restoration of ecosystems to maintain and enhance biodiversity and ecosystem services, thereby contributing to sustainable development while reducing environment-related risks.
In order to implement Article 8(f) of the Convention and achieve Aichi Biodiversity Targets 14 and 15, there is a need for a concerted and collaborative effort to support, facilitate, upscale, finance and implement ecosystem restoration activities on the ground. Such activities would not only contribute to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, but also improve food and water security, provide employment and alleviate poverty, promote the conservation and sustainable use of natural capital, combat land degradation and desertification, and mitigate and adapt to climate change.