Sera Gibson and Lalao Aigrette presented on the penultimate day of SER2023, discussing ambitious restoration initiatives; Taranaki Mounga, a project transforming New Zealand’s mountain ranges and islands, and a Madagascar mangrove restoration project.

Lalao Aigrette, National Technical Advisor for Mangroves, Madagascar

The Taranaki Mounga project, on the west coast of New Zealand’s North Island, shows how ecological restoration can empower and strengthen local communities. 

Key to achieving this was reconnecting Indigenous people with their history, offering a sense of ownership and belonging, thus inspiring them to protect these spaces for generations to come. Restoring ecological resilience and natural biodiversity, exemplified by the successful reintroduction of the kiwi and toutouwai birds, was achieved through collaboration between the Department of Conservation, the Taranaki iwi Chairs forum, and philanthropic investors.

Sera Gibson, Pou Whakahaere / Project Manager for Taranaki Mounga, New Zealand

Both initiatives demonstrate that successful restoration happens by setting clear standards-based goals that enable impacts to be measured and communicated. 

The replanting of 14.5 million mangrove trees by an expansive collaboration of 22 community groups, the Madagascar Ministry of Environment, and social enterprise Blue Ventures has resulted in improved livelihood for local communities including economic benefits, increased fisheries productivity, and coastal protection. This work was conducted using the eight Principles in SER’s International Principles and Standards for Ecological Restoration.

In Australia, the Restoration Decade Alliance, of which SER2023 co-host SER-Australasia is a member, today announced its roadmap to restoration success in Australia, calling for the development of a National Restoration Plan to repair degraded and damaged ecosystems across the country

SER World Conferences provide space for impact-driven discussions, workshops, side-events, and symposia.

  • The Assisted Natural Regeneration (ANR) Alliance co-hosted a workshop with Conservation International and World Resources Institute, on the mission of the ANR Alliance and offered delegates the opportunity to discuss the ANR Alliance Draft Strategy and Action Plan.
  • Launched by The Society of Wetland Scientists at SER2023, the Guidance on how to operationalize Rights of Wetlands supports the proposed Universal Declaration of the Rights of Wetlands.