Digital Forum

Nature at the heart of a global circular bioeconomy

19 March 2021, 12:00 – 16:15 UTC
Online


Forests, trees and landscapes have long played a role in economic development, with the rise and fall of societies coinciding with the health of farms, fields and forests and the availability of their biological resources as renewable sources of energy, building materials, food and other ecosystem services. Now, sustainable landscapes are more important than ever in protecting the world from accelerating climate change and helping to mitigate the runaway consumption of non-renewable resources.

The circular bioeconomy – an economy powered by nature and its sustainable resources – offers a unique opportunity to use renewable natural capital to holistically transform and manage our land, food, health and industrial systems as well as our cities. If managed sustainably for people and the planet, it has the potential to decarbonize our economy and restore biodiversity while providing jobs and achieving inclusive growth.

On March 19, the European Forest Institute (EFI), the recently-merged Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) and World Agroforestry (ICRAF) and the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, in collaboration with the Global Landscapes Forum (GLF) and the Sustainable Markets Initiative Circular Bioeconomy Alliance (SMI CBA), will host the world’s first conference examining the forest-based bioeconomy with a focus on the Global South.

This half-day digital forum will bring together investors, scientists, forestry, agroforestry and landscape experts, practitioners, community and business leaders and policy makers to explore what it will take to shift to a circular bioeconomic model that supports people and the planet, putting nature at the heart of how we operate.

Forests, landscapes and agroforestry can catalyze this vital transformation as they are our main terrestrial natural capital supporting wealth creation in rural and urban areas.

Marc Palahí, EFI

 

Agenda

Welcome remarks

Robert Nasi, Director General CIFOR, and Marc Palahí, Director EFI, will introduce and provide context on the role of trees and forests in the circular bioeconomy and welcome panelists and participants to the day’s discussions and dialogue.

Speakers

Marc Palahí

Director of the European Forest Institute (EFI)

Robert Nasi

Director General, Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR)
Managing Director, CIFOR-ICRAF

TIME

12:00-12:10

TIME ZONE

UTC

ROOM

Online

Opening plenary: Why do we need a circular bioeconomy?

A transition to an economy based on renewable and circular materials and sustainable landscape management will play a critical role in replacing the wide range of non-renewable, fossil-based products we currently use. This also brings opportunities for new jobs and industries, as well as contributes to managing and rebuilding ecosystems and landscapes in a sustainable way. Why is this transition critical now and how can we establish the right policy framework to provide economic incentives and to guarantee that the transition is sustainable and just?

Speakers

Jutta Urpilainen

European Commissioner for International Partnerships

Janez Potočnik

Co-Chair of the International Resource Panel and Partner, SYSTEMIQ

Christopher Martius

Bonn Hub Leader & Managing Director of CIFOR Germany

Mary Njenga

Research Scientist, Bioenergy, World Agroforestry (ICRAF)

Carlos Nobre

Earth System scientist and Co-chair of the Science Panel for the Amazon

Moderator

Mari Pantsar

Director, Sustainability solutions, The Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra

TIME

12:10-13:00

TIME ZONE

UTC

ROOM

Online

Break

TIME

13:00-13:10

TIME ZONE

UTC

Session 1: Will there be enough wood?

Demand for roundwood to supply energy and materials is expected to increase significantly in the coming decades as fossil-based raw materials are replaced with forest biomass and wood products.  The reality, however, is that there are currently no systematic studies offering up-to-date outlooks on the implications of forest bioeconomy development for global forests. In this session we aim to bridge that gap in understanding and offer insights into demand and supply for forest biomass as part of the shift to a circular bioeconomy, including reflections on how sustainable wood supply should be reconcile with biodiversity protection and providing inclusive prosperity for local communities.

Speakers

Dr. Mujawamariya Jeanne d’Arc

Minister of Environment, Republic of Rwanda

Michael Allen Brady

Team Leader, Value Chains, Finance, & Investments
CIFOR

Lauri Hetemäki

Assistant Director of the European Forest Institute (EFI)

TIME

13:10-14:00

TIME ZONE

UTC

ROOM

Online

Break

TIME

14:00-14:10

TIME ZONE

UTC

Session 2: From theory to practice: the circular bioeconomy in action

Panelists will explore the most recent research and innovation to highlight successful forest-based solutions for the circular bioeconomy transition. What are the climate benefits of using wood- and other biobased solutions compared to fossil and non-renewable products. How we can we ensure that latest innovations and technologies are transferred to the global south?

Speakers

Niklas von Weymarn

CEO, Metsä Spring and Board member, Woodio

Rocio A. Diaz-Chavez

Deputy Director for Research and Energy and Climate Change Programme Leader, SEI Africa

Vicente Guallart

Architect, Guallart Architects

TIME

14:10-15:00

TIME ZONE

UTC

ROOM

Online

Break

TIME

15:00-15:10

TIME ZONE

UTC

Final Plenary: Financing the circular bioeconomy

Scaling up successful circular bioeconomic models requires investment and leadership from industry and investors in addition to the right policy and science. With plenty of small-scale examples being tested and proven, how can we unleash the power of private finance and what will it take to make these examples more common?

Speakers

Lee White

Ministry of Water, Forest, the Sea and Environment (Gabon)

Jennifer Pryce

President and CEO, Calvert Impact Capital

Justin Adams

Co-Director, Nature Based Solutions, World Economic Forum
Executive Director, Tropical Forest Alliance

TIME

15:10-16:00

TIME ZONE

UTC

ROOM

Online

Closing remarks

Reflections on the day’s dialogue and consideration of next steps.

TIME

16:00-16:15

TIME ZONE

UTC

ROOM

Online

Organized by

The European Forest Institute (EFI) is an international organisation created by European states that conducts research and provides policy support for forest-based issues, connecting knowledge to action.

The Center for International Forestry Research and World Agroforestry (CIFOR-ICRAF) is the world’s leading organisation focused on forestry and agroforestry. Together, these joint CGIAR research centers provide the evidence and innovative solutions needed to scale up investment in sustainable development and address the global challenges of our time.

The Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra is a future fund that collaborates with partners from different sectors to research, trial and implement bold new ideas that shape the future. Join us in creating a fair transition to a circular economy and scaling up solutions that are needed to safeguard biodiversity and solve the climate crisis.

The Global Landscapes Forum (GLF) is the world’s largest knowledge-based platform on sustainable land use. Through their outreach activities, GLF is bringing people together to address some of the most complex issues facing earth today.

The Sustainable Markets Initiative (SMI) aims to lead and accelerate the world’s transition to a sustainable future by putting Nature, People and Planet at the heart of our global value creation. His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales launched the SMI at the World Economic Forum 2020 Annual Meeting in Davos and has convened global leaders from across public, private and philanthropic sectors, challenging them to identify ways to accelerate and bring economic value int harmony with social and environmental sustainability. Launched earlier this year, the Terra Carta will serve as the guiding mandate for the Sustainable Markets Initiative.