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SDG15.3.1 tools

Alex Zvoleff/Conservation International

The UNCCD reporting and review process is facilitated through a reporting platform, the Performance Review and Assessment of Implementation System (PRAIS). UNCCD country Parties can log in to the PRAIS portal using their credentials and access interactive reporting templates prepopulated, among others, with default data on SDG Indicator 15.3.1 and its sub-indicators. As requested in decision 11/COP 14, the reporting tools are currently been improved, including through the establishment of a geospatial data management platform.  

Additionally, country Parties have received training in the use of Trends.Earth, a free and open-source tool from Conservation International for monitoring land change using earth observations in an innovative desktop and cloud-based system. Trends.Earth supports the calculation and analysis of SDG Indicator 15.3.1 and its three sub-indicators, in compliance with the UNCCD and SDG reporting requirements. The tool not only operationalizes the standardized methodologies documented in the Good Practice Guidance on SDG Indicator 15.3.1, but puts countries in the position to bring the estimation process back home by taking on global estimates and producing their own country estimates based on country data and nationally determined assumptions, while employing the same standardized methodologies. The platform allows users to plot time series of key indicators of land change (including degradation and improvement), to produce maps and other graphics that can support monitoring and reporting, and to track the impact of sustainable land management or other projects.

As part of the Global Environment Facility (GEF)-funded project entitled “Strengthening Land Degradation Neutrality data and decision-making through free and open access platforms”, known as Tools4LDN, new datasets and algorithms are being added to Trends.Earth. Trends.Earth is partnering for this project with WOCAT and LandPKS to facilitate the integration of remotely sensed analysis with land management information collected though a mobile application. This will allow not only for systematic verification of degradation trends and monitoring of progress made under the LDN Target Setting Programme, but also collecting land condition and management information on the ground which will be critical for posterior planning processes.

Finally, the Group on Earth Observation Land Degradation Neutrality (GEO-LDN) Initiative, a stake-holder driven initiative with a clear policy mandate from the UNCCD (decision 9/COP.13), is working to promote the development of an open and collaborative data analytics platform – a system of systems – to support planning, implementation, and monitoring of actions to achieve LDN from Earth Observations and other data sources. The Initiative therefore leverages work already conducted under related initiatives such as Trends.Earth and Tools 4LDN, Open Foris, openEO, EO4SDG, CEOS, etc.

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