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The Brazilian state of Espírito Santo set to restore 80,000 hectares of forests and join the 20x20 Initiative for the global movement of large-scale restoration launched at the "Bonn Challenge"

WASHINGTON/SÃO PAULO (JUNE 18, 2015) - The state of Espírito Santo announced its new membership of the 20x20 Initiative at the Second Global Forum on Sustainable Growth in Santiago, Chile this week, in leading up to the COP 21 meeting in Paris this December. The 20x20 Initiative was launched at the Climate Convention's COP 20 in December 2014 in Peru. The Initiative is an effort led by countries and organizations in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) to restore and prevent deforestation by at least 20 million hectares of degraded land by 2020.

The 20x20 Initiative is aligned with a range global actions such as the Forests Statement of the New York Climate Summit, the Bonn Challenge to restore 150 million hectares by 2020, and the national Atlantic Forest Restoration Pact. To date, nine countries and three regional programs have joined the Initiative, with goals that propose actions for forest restoration and conservation, avoided deforestation, and sustainable land use practices.

Espírito Santo’s contribution, established by law in the 2015/2018 Government's Strategic Plan, aims to recover 80,000 hectares over the next four years. Actions established in the Forest Conservation and Recovery Program, Reflorestar, will help to achieve this.

The State’s entry into the Initiative emphasizes a consistent and continuous track record of progress made in the last ten years on developing and implementing of forest conservation and recovery policies, which are starting to produce significant results.

In addition to direct benefits such as the preservation and recovery of critical environmental services for quality of life, (water, soil, and biodiversity), Espirito Santo's ability to plan large-scale actions in the field of forest restoration, allowing it to take on global extent responsibilities, such as the 20x20 Initiative, is especially noteworthy. A further important benefit concerns the restoration economy, considered a sustainable development pathway for Brazil, which reinforces important links in the forest production chain. This is aligned to Brazil's expectations to launch a national restoration plan, PLANAVEG, currently undergoing public consultation and led by the Ministry of the Environment.

Enabling conditions that allowed the state of Espírito Santo to take on the 20x20 Initiative include the State Government prioritizing public policy development focused on forest conservation and restoration, and partnership that support the state through knowledge transfer, technology and institutional support. These have enabled the implementation of major actions for structuring and advancing the Reforestation Program. Noteworthy partnerships include The Nature Conservancy, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, the World Resources Institute, the World Bank, Instituto Bioatlântica, and the Global Environment Facility amongst others.

Additional Information:

On the state of Espírito Santo Joining the Initiative Marcos Sossai, Espírito Santo's Department of the Environment

About the 20x20 Initiative Rachel Biderman, WRI Brasil and Walter Vergara, WRI and

About Bonn Challenge Miguel Calmon, IUCN and Carole Saint-Laurent, IUCN and GPFLR. and

About the Atlantic Forest Restoration Pact Aurelio Padovezi, WRI Brasil

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