Mongolia is the only UN-REDD Programme partner country with significant amounts of boreal forest, making it a unique case for developing climate change mitigation and adaption strategies.

The country faces significant climate change pressures, including an increase in temperature three times higher than the global average which will likely lead to changes in water availability through permafrost change, increased incidence of pests and fires, and unsustainable use as an indirect pressure from the impact of severe winters and untenable harvesting.

Data collected by the Forest Research and Development Center show that Mongolia’s northern boreal forests cover approximately 10.4 million hectares, accounting for a forest area similar to countries such as Nepal and Cambodia, and are being lost at an annual rate of 0.74% (over 80,000 hectares). On the southern edge of the vast boreal forest ecoregion, forests are being lost at the alarming rate of 6.5% per year – this region being particularly vulnerable to the impacts of global climate change, resulting from anthropogenic greenhouse emissions.

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  Photos of Mongolia’s forest from the left to right: Saxual Forest, Boreal Forest, and 
Ms. Majig Tungalag, the National Programme Director of the REDD+ Programme Mongolia.
Photo Credit: The UN-REDD National Programme, Mongolia

Driving efforts to develop a national REDD+ strategy to address these issues is national programme director Ms. Majig Tungalag, who recognizes the potential of REDD+ to reduce Mongolia's forest loss rate and enhance its forest carbon stocks. Ms. Tungalag has served as Director in the Ministry of Environment and Tourism for over two years, and previously for over three years as Director of Mongolia's Forest Agency. Her ambition is to combine local and global efforts to reduce forest loss rate and to enhance sustainability of the country’s forest management, thus reaching tangible results in forest conservation. Ms. Tungalag sees the main challenges to developing and implementing a REDD+ strategy as building effective cooperation among the various efforts and interests of stakeholders at different levels.  Lessons learned and experience from advanced REDD+ countries will be considered in its development.

The Mongolia REDD+ Programme is led by the Ministry of Environment and Tourism. One of the supporting initiatives is the UN-REDD National Programme – which will be implemented until 2018.

Learn more about the UN-REDD Programme in Mongolia here.