Launch of the Wildfire-Resilient Landscapes Network in Dubai.
Globally, wildfires have been worse in 2023 than any year in recorded history, releasing upwards of 410 megatonnes of greenhouse gases.
In response, the Circular Bioeconomy Alliance (CBA) and the Commonwealth Secretariat have launched the Wildfire-Resilient Landscapes Network, a joint initiative to create resilient landscapes to deal with the increasing problem of wildfires in fire-prone areas of the world.
Established in 2020 by the UK’s King Charles III, the Alliance’s goal is to accelerate the transition to a circular bioeconomy that is climate neutral, inclusive, and prospers in harmony with nature. Palladium, a member of the Alliance, participated in the Network’s launch in Dubai alongside The King, just days before COP28 began.
“Palladium was invited to contribute to the development of the Wildfire-Resilient Landscapes Network, in terms of content and approach,” says Palladium co-CEO Jose Maria Ortiz. “To launch the Network here in Dubai in the days leading up to COP28 underscores its importance and potential for impact. It’s an honour to be part of this core group.”
The network was inspired by The King’s interest in linking Australia’s indigenous fire experts with Canadian experts following Canada’s most recent devastating fire season. “We’re bringing together the ancestral knowledge of indigenous communities with the latest fire mitigation techniques science has to offer,” explains Ortiz. “The reality is that some wildfires are natural; beneficial; inevitable. Others can and must be avoided. We’ll use this new network of knowledge to identify and develop methods and interventions that will reduce these devastating fires in the future.”
The costs related to wildfire prevention and landscape management currently comes from public subsidies, which is insufficient to deal with the scale of the problem globally. Private sector investments and partnerships will have a huge role to play, and the initiative will work with the finance industry to develop innovative financial tools that can generate the necessary investments.
In practice, ‘Living Labs’ will demonstrate how to create resilient landscapes to deal with the increasing problem of wildfires in fire-prone areas of the world. Palladium has offered its expertise, including its platform, NACTIVA, to develop pilot programs in the Mediterranean region.
The savanna fire management program across northern Australia, which uses traditional burning methods, is an example of how indigenous knowledge can form the basis for new financial tools that generate income for Indigenous Communities, while supporting resilient landscapes through carbon markets.
“We are honoured to host this Network, which will build on the success of our Living Labs and connect the dots between science, indigenous knowledge and the financial sector to enable a holistic approach to creating wildfire-resilient landscapes,” says Marc Palahí, CEO of the Circular Bioeconomy Alliance.
“To have Palladium on board—a global leader in nature-based solutions, climate resilience, and local solutions to global problems—is a real asset to our work.”