Global Civil Society & the UN Sustainable Development Goals

Goal 15: Sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, halt biodiversity loss

Life on Land

Forests cover 30.7 per cent of the Earth’s surface and, in addition to providing food security and shelter, they are key to combating climate change, protecting biodiversity and the homes of the indigenous population. By protecting forests, we will also be able to strengthen natural resource management and increase land productivity.

At the current time, thirteen million hectares of forests are being lost every year while the persistent degradation of drylands has led to the desertification of 3.6 billion hectares. Even though up to 15% of land is currently under protection, biodiversity is still at risk. Deforestation and desertification – caused by human activities and climate change – pose major challenges to sustainable development and have affected the lives and livelihoods of millions of people in the fight against poverty.

Efforts are being made to manage forests and combat desertification. There are two international agreements being implemented currently that promote the use of resources in an equitable way. Financial investments in support of biodiversity are also being provided.

Name Acronym Founded City HQ Country/Territory HQ Type I Type II

Unity of Nations Action for Climate Change Council

UNAccc 2021 Vadodara G

Unity-and-Diversity World Council

UDC 1965 Los Angeles CA USA F

Universal Declaration of Human Rights

UDHR 1948 New York NY USA T g

Universal Life Church

ULC 1959 Seattle WA USA N

Universala Medicina Esperanto-Asocio

UMEA 1908 Trier Germany C v

Universities Federation for Animal Welfare

UFAW 1926 Wheathampstead UK G

University of the Arctic

UArctic 2001 Rovaniemi D

UNUM OMNES International Council of Catholic Men

ICCM 1948 Vatican City Vatican C

Urban Biodiversity and Design

URBIO 2008 F

Urban Environmental Accords

UEA 2012 Gwangju Korea Rep F

Urban Land Institute

ULI 1936 Washington DC USA G j


1992 Sassenberg Germany G

UWC Red Cross Nordic

RCNUWC 1995 Flekke Norway G

UWI Centre for Environment and Development, Mona

UWICED Kingston Jamaica K

Van Tienhoven Foundation for International Nature Protection

1930 Leiden Netherlands G f

Varkey Foundation

London UK N f

Vegan Society

1944 Hockley UK N

Vegetarians International Voice for Animals

VIVA 1994 Bristol UK N

Verdens Skove

1983 Copenhagen Denmark G

Vereniging Tropische Bossen

VTB 1981 Wageningen Netherlands G


2005 Washington DC USA F

Vétérinaires Sans Frontières International

VSF International 1989 Brussels F

Vienna Convention on Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage

1963 T g

Vienna Wiestenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies

VWI Vienna Austria G j

Vier Pfoten International

Vienna Austria F

Village Earth

1993 Fort Collins CO G


1982 Oklahoma City OK USA N

Voluntary Human Extinction Movement


Wainwright House


Walking Tree Travel

Denver CO USA G e


1983 The Hague Netherlands G

Waste Free Oceans

WFO Brussels Belgium F

Water and Development Information for Arid Lands Global Network

G-WADI 2004 Paris France F y

Water Center for the Humid Tropics of Latin America and the Caribbean

1992 Panama Panama E g

Water Environment Federation

WEF 1928 Alexandria VA G

Water Environment Partnership in Asia

WEPA 2004 Hayama Japan F g

Water Europe

WE 2004 Brussels E y

We Move Europe

WeMove.EU Berlin F

Web alliance for Regreening in Africa

W4RA Amsterdam Netherlands G

WEC International

WEC 1913 Coventry F v

Weeden Foundation

WF 1963 N f


2008 Overijse Belgium F

Wellbeing Economy Alliance

WEAll C y


WFD 1959 Berlin Germany G

WESSA Share-Net

1989 Howick South Africa E

West African Association for Environmental Assessment

WAAEA 2002 Cotonou Benin D

West African Association for Marine Environment

WAAME 1995 Dakar Senegal G

West African Science Service Center on Climate Change and Adapted Land Use

WASCAL Accra Ghana D g

West African Women's Association

WAWA 1984 Dakar Senegal E

Western Central Atlantic Fishery Commission

WECAFC 1973 Bridgetown Barbados E g