The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in those countries experiencing serious drought and/or desertification, particularly in Africa (UNCCD) is an international convention that focuses primarily on addressing land degradation. The UNCCD has been ratified by 196 states plus the European Union. In 2015 parties to the convention adopted Land Degradation Neutrality (SDG Target 15.3) as a primary goal of the UNCCD.
IUCN has a long standing partnership with the UNCCD and has actively influenced the evolution of the convention, including development, adoption and implementation of LDN. IUCN is an institutional observer of the Science Policy Interface of the UNCCD and also a member of the Inter Agency Task Force of the UN Decade on Deserts and the Fight against Desertification (UNDDD).
The partnership between the IUCN Secretariat and the UNCCD Secretariat is guided by a Work Plan and Memorandum of Understanding. The second Joint Work Plan under this MoU was agreed on in July 2015 to guide the partnership with the goal of supporting progress towards policies and programmes that deliver Land Degradation Neutrality through the application of Nature Based Solutions (at national and sub national levels).
IUCN’s recommendations for achieving the goals of the convention are outlined in the technical brief on Land Degradation Neutrality. This technical brief was written primarily for a conservation audience, in an effort to build the case for their engagement in LDN and to highlight potential and shared concerns over the proposed LDN target setting. The links between Combating Desertification and Conserving Biodiversity are discussed in the joint publication “Conserving Dryland Biodiversity”.