December 2, 2022

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How IUCN’s Restoration Barometer can help countries to track Restoration Progress

What it is

The Restoration Barometer (launched in 2016 as the Bonn Challenge Barometer) is the only tool already used by governments to track the progress of restoration targets across all terrestrial ecosystems including coastal and inland waters. It was designed for countries that have committed to restore landscapes under international goals or agreements.

The Barometer provides an opportunity for national and sub-national governments to simplify and streamline reporting on their restoration commitments and can help track and record progress towards global goals. These include:

Tracking progress

The Barometer tracks restoration progress across terrestrial ecosystems including coastal and inland waters where use or management rights can be identified (i.e., not high seas). Ecosystem restoration interventions are classified according to the IUCN Restoration Intervention Typology for Terrestrial Ecosystems (RITTE), This builds on the IUCN Global Ecosystem Typology 2.0 and categorization of ecosystems by the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration and includes human dominated landscapes like urban and mixed-use areas, which can provide untapped potential for restoration.

More than 50 countries now recognise the benefits of the Barometer and endorse its use.  Currently, 22 countries are using the Barometer to report the progress of their restoration targets and more than 50 have endorsed it. Private sector organisations and associations are also currently able to use the Barometer to report progress on their restoration pledges.

How it works

The Barometer has eight indicators that build a comprehensive picture of a country’s restoration progress. It records the size of the area being brought under restoration as well as the corresponding climate, biodiversity and socio-economic benefits, and covers the enabling policies and funding structures at the heart of successful restoration. It’s a vital tool to highlight what actions are working and why, reveal obstacles to further success, and provide a foundation for scaling up and increasing investments in restoration.

Based on the core principles of flexibility and inclusivity, it can still be used even if there isn’t adequate data for all indicators.

Once you have decided that this free tool is right for you, you will see that the process is straightforward. You begin by requesting a new account. After a short verification step, your account will be confirmed by email, and you can begin securely entering your restoration related data. This may take you some time to collect, but don’t worry. There is a series of simple tutorials to help you along the process.

Now that your restoration data is entered based on your priorities, we will run a quick check to make sure everything is in order. After that, you will have a comprehensive picture of your restoration progress with outputs that will help with reporting and other needs you may have.

Information submitted to the Barometer should be accurate and clearly represent the breadth of restoration interventions underway in a country. This can be achieved by involving beneficiaries and stakeholders from implementing agencies to review and submit data. Sharing data sources helps confirm that the collection process was participatory, and can be done through approaches including validation workshops, review by expert panels and open calls for contributions.

Currently, only focal points of governments can create accounts on the Barometer website. If you work for an NGO and are interested in learning more about the tool, please email Barometer@iucn.org and we would be happy to take you through it.

The Future

Going forward, the private sector will be able to use the Barometer, building a comprehensive picture of the benefits of their restoration efforts and commitments. For example, as companies respond to growing awareness about their impacts and dependencies on nature, this tool can help them demonstrate how they are driving positive social and environmental change.

Once businesses add data to the Barometer, they can quantify their progress, alongside other leading companies, and report these outcomes to their shareholders and at international meetings.

Furthermore, this tool can help governments, associations and businesses assess where and how resources should be allocated. It may also help identify policies and incentives needed to unlock transformative restoration action.

To find out more visit: restorationbarometer.org and stay tuned for our 2022 report – featuring the progress made by 20+ countries on their restoration commitments.

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