Land Reclamation

Land reclamation, the process of creating new land areas from oceans, riverbeds, or lake beds, has a significant relationship with numerous Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The act of land reclamation itself can play a crucial role in supporting SDG 15 (Life on Land), especially when it comes to combating desertification, restoring degraded land and soil, and achieving a land degradation-neutral world. By reclaiming degraded land or creating new land, it's possible to reverse the damage done by overuse, erosion, or other forms of environmental degradation.

However, the effects of land reclamation are multifaceted and not always positive. If not conducted in an environmentally conscious and sustainable manner, it can also negatively impact SDG 15 by disrupting existing land ecosystems, reducing biodiversity, and potentially causing the loss of endemic species. Moreover, it can impact SDG 14 (Life Below Water), as the extraction of materials from seabeds for reclamation can cause serious harm to marine life, disrupt marine ecosystems, and exacerbate the effects of climate change by releasing stored carbon.

Indirectly, land reclamation can support SDG 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities) and SDG 9 (Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure). New land created through reclamation can provide the space needed for expanding urban areas or infrastructure development, helping accommodate population growth, urbanization trends, and industrial needs. Nevertheless, it is vital that this is done in a way that minimizes environmental damage and promotes sustainable urban development, in line with the principles of SDG 11.

Land reclamation also intertwines with SDG 2 (Zero Hunger) by providing potential new areas for agriculture and food production. Meanwhile, it can contribute to SDG 13 (Climate Action) if reclaimed areas are used to create carbon sinks such as forested areas or wetlands.

Indigenous and community lands, crucial for rural livelihoods, are typically held under informal customary tenure arrangements. This article reviews and maps 19 community land formalization and 14 company land acquisition procedures in 15 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Comparing community and company procedures identifies multiple sources of inequity.
This book chapter advances SDGs 9, 13, and 15 by highlighting coastal management problems related to the reclamation process that have been addressed through geoinformatics. The findings of the study carried out offer a detailed overview of the quantity and quality of research materials reported thus far on the subject of the recycling process, remote sensing, and Geographical Information System innovations.
As the rapid development of population leads to increasing demand for food and land resources, issues such as deforestation, land restoration from lakes, and the recuperation of grassland can lead to a ferocious cycle. This chapter reviews issues and challenges of the land reclamation process and strategic solutions proposed for its sustainable development.

Environmental Science and Policy, Volume 106, April 2020

The Paris Agreement to keep global temperature increase to well-below 2 °C and to pursue efforts to limit it to 1.5 °C requires to formulate ambitious climate-change mitigation scenarios to reduce CO2 emissions and to enhance carbon sequestration. These scenarios likely require significant land-use change. Failing to mitigate climate change will result in an unprecedented warming with significant biodiversity loss. The mitigation potential on land is high. However, how land-based mitigation options potentially affect biodiversity is poorly understood.

This book chapter advances SDGs 15 and 11 by looking at land restoration and its military dimensions, as part of the environmental security discourse, a topic that has not received as much attention as it should in mainstream environmental security studies and policy discussions.