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Delivering Better, Faster Restoration of Degraded Land and Forests

Landscape restoration brings vitality back to degraded landscapes. It creates jobs, sequesters carbon, and protects biodiversity. The Bezos Earth Fund supports locally led restoration in Africa and the U.S. by channeling funds directly to implementing groups, providing training and capacity building, and monitoring progress.

A member of Rwanda’s Environmental Conservation Organization (RECOR) restores agricultural land.
A member of Rwanda’s Environmental Conservation Organization (RECOR) restores agricultural land. (Photo credit: AFR100 / World Resources Institute)

To date, about 30% of global forest cover has been completely cleared and a further 20% is degraded. Deforestation and degradation continue at alarming rates, with an estimated 10 million hectares of forest lost yearly.

But there is hope. More than two billion hectares of degraded and deforested land can be restored (equivalent to twice the area of China), delivering huge benefits in carbon sequestration, food security, water quality, income generation, and biodiversity protection. Most global restoration opportunities lie in mosaic landscapes, including forested areas, farmland, pastureland, and human settlements. Restoration can take many forms, such as:

  • Growing trees on farms to boost crop yields, provide food for animals and fuelwood for households.
  • Establishing sustainably managed native timber and bamboo plantations that create jobs and safeguard biodiversity while protecting natural forests from deforestation.
  • Investing in tree crops, like coffee and cocoa, to improve incomes.
  • Planting mangroves to improve coastal livelihoods and reduce disaster risk.
  • Restoring degraded forests with native species to improve biodiversity and create carbon revenue opportunities.
  • Growing trees and greening parks in urban areas to reduce the heat island effect, improve air quality, and create recreational opportunities.

The Bezos Earth Fund is working to catalyze more, better, and faster restoration of degraded land. We collaborate with other funding and delivery partners to coordinate activities, share information, and jointly monitor progress—making individual projects add up to more than the sum of their parts.

We invest in innovative monitoring technology, combining satellite data with field-based reporting to track restoration as it unfolds on the ground. We keep the frontline communities, small businesses, and community groups leading the restoration of their land at the center of all we do.

With a current focus on locally led restoration in Africa and the U.S., the Bezos Earth Fund is developing mechanisms to channel funding directly to these local groups and investing in training and capacity building to help local leaders grow their projects and businesses.

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