Minister Choi Attends UNFCCC COP26
At UNFCCC COP26 held in Glasgow, United Kingdom in October 31-November 12, 2021, the Korea Forest Service (KFS) participated in the press conference of Global Forest Finance Pledge and hosted the Peace Forest Initiative (PFI) side event. The KFS Minister Byeong-am Choi announced to join the Global Forest Finance Pledge which collectively provides US$12 billion for forest-related climate finance to ODA eligible countries between 2021-2025.
The UK, the hosting country of COP26, organized a Leader's event called 'Action on Forests and Land-use,' to emphasize the importance of restoration and conservation of forests and sustainable land-use. At this event, 'Glasgow Leaders Declaration on Forests and Land Use' and 'Global Forest Finance Pledge,' both of which the KFS has signed, were announced.
The Global Forest Finance Pledge that committed the largest amount of financial support of advanced countries highlighted the value of forest as a global carbon sink and foundation of biodiversity. The press conference was attended by Colombian President Ivan Duque Marquez of Colombia, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo, The Rt Hon Frank Zacharias Robin Goldsmith of the UK, Norwegian Minister of Climate and the Environment Espen Barth Eide, and KFS Minister Byeong-am Choi.
During the press conference, Minister Choi stated that Korea's successful forest restoration experience has been a role model to many developing countries, and that he hopes the agenda of the Glasgow Leaders Declaration on Forests and Land Use and the Global Forest Finance Pledge will be addressed during the XV World Forestry Congress to be held in Seoul, Korea, in May 2-6, 2022.
Also, the Korea Forest Service hosted the Peace Forest Initiative side event at the Korea Pavilion. Peace Forest Initiative is a program that achieves international ecosystem restoration and builds trust and peace among bordering countries in conflict through forest restoration cooperative projects. At the event, UNCCD Executive Secretary Ibrahim Thiaw gave a keynote speech on 'Importance of global forest cooperation for climate action and promotion of peace,' H.E. Prof. Fekadu Beyene, Commissioner for the Environment, Forest and Climate Change Commission (EFCCC) of Ethiopia introduced the pilot project of PFI in Ethiopia. Director General Park Eun-sik of the KFS International Affairs Bureau introduced the international cooperation policies and projects of the KFS, followed by the presentations of a representative from Bosnia and Herzegovina and Deputy Director General Hang Suntra of Forestry Administration, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (FA-MAFF) of Cambodia.
The KFS is going to continue to expand the PFI partnership countries to enhance the capacity of developing countries that aim to address climate crisis.