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Issue #234 | 11 February 2015

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Editor's Note
Setting the Bar High for 2015
The expectations for 2015 could not be higher. More.
Lynn Wagner, Ph.D., Group Director, SDG Knowledge, IISD

Recent Guest Articles
Making Access and Benefit-sharing Work for Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
The ‘Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization' to the Convention on Biological Diversity has been hailed as a giant step towards the implementation of the third objective of the CBD. More.
Dan Leskien, Senior Liaison Officer, Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN

Energy Efficiency: A Field of Opportunity for the G20
For the very first time the G20 Heads of State have called for more international collaboration on energy efficiency. More.
Santiago Creuheras, Chairman of IPEEC’s Policy Committee

The Challenge of Africa's Transformation: Issues of Food Security and Climate Change
Two years ago, to mark the 10-year anniversary of the adoption of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), a very important milestone for agriculture and food security on the continent, the African Union (AU) declared 2014 the year of agriculture. More.
Abdalla Hamdok, Deputy Executive Secretary, UN Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA)

Policy Brief
Global Climate Governance in 2014 in Retrospect
This update focuses in particular on activities by diverse actors outside the UNFCCC process, and how these actors are supporting collective and cooperative action on climate change. More.
Mari Luomi, Thematic Expert for Climate Change and Sustainable Energy (Finland)

The Quest for Harmonized Implementation: Anticipating a Broader Role for Basin Organizations in the Post-2015 Era
Basin organizations are emerging as a form of water governance capable of addressing diverse aims in a coherent manner. More.
Delia Paul, Thematic Expert for Poverty Reduction, Rights and Governance (Malaysia/Australia)

Human Security and Climate Change
The issues of human security and conflict in relation to climate change have evolved to a place where they now constitute a recognized and important component in the climate change conversation, and are being addressed in a diverse range of fora through meetings, reports and changes in policy. More.
Leila Mead, Thematic Expert for Climate Change and Sustainable Energy (US)

Do We Need a New Treaty to Protect Biodiversity in the Deep Seas?
For ten years negotiators in New York have been debating, under the aegis of the UN General Assembly, the need for a new international agreement to protect biodiversity in the deep seas. More.
Elisa Morgera, Thematic Expert for International Organizations, IISD Reporting Services (Italy)

A New International Instrument Enters into Force: The First Meeting of the Parties to the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit-sharing
The Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization (ABS) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) entered into force on 12 October 2014, with 54 ratifications at the time. More.
Elsa Tsioumani, Ph.D., Thematic Expert on Biodiversity (Greece)

Biodiversity in 2014: A Year in Review
It's all about the bass, the bass….no treble…..The popular tune for 2014 was all about the base….the natural resource base and how it could support solutions to the world's development problems. More.
Lauren Anderson, Content Editor, Biodiversity, Forests, Land and Water (US)

Latest News
Member States Conclude First Drafting Session on FfD

30 January 2015: As part of preparations for the Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FfD), UN Member States conducted the first of three drafting sessions on the Conference outcome document. More.

Photo: L-R: Amina Mohammed, UN Secretary-General's Special Advisor on Post-2015 Development Planning, and Co-Facilitator Amb. George Wilfred Talbot, Guyana

BBNJ Working Group Concludes Mandate, Agrees on Nature of Future Instrument

23 January 2015: Delegates at the ninth meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Informal Working Group to study issues relating to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction (BBNJ) reached consensus on the legally binding nature of a future agreement on the conservation and sustainable use of BBNJ under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). More.

Photo: UN-DOALOS Director Gabriele Goettsche-Wanli and Working Group Co-Chairs Palitha Kohona and Liesbeth Lijnzaad conferred with delegates.

Negotiations Consider Four Elements of Post-2015 Agenda

21 January 2015: At the first sessions of intergovernmental negotiations on the post-2015 development agenda, UN Member States and other participants addressed the four elements expected to comprise the new agenda: a declaration; a set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and targets, along with eventual indicators; their means of implementation (MOI) and a new Global Partnership for Development; and follow-up and review of implementation. More.

IRENA Assembly Highlights Growing Role of Renewables

18 January 2015: During the fifth meeting of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) Assembly, participants discussed ways to accelerate the growth of renewable energy, considering in particular such challenges as energy security, climate change and the future financing of the organization. The Assembly also re-appointed Adnan Amin as Director-General of IRENA. More.

CGRFA Finalizes State of the World's Animal Genetic Resources Report

26 January 2015: The fifteenth session of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN's (FAO) Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA 15) addressed animal, forest and plant genetic resources, access and benefit-sharing (ABS) for genetic resources for food and agriculture (GRFA), biodiversity and nutrition, and climate change and GRFA. More.

IPBES-3 Adopts 2014-2018 Work Programme

17 January 2015: Among other decisions taken by the third session of the Plenary of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES-3) was the approval of a timetable for carrying out an assessment on land degradation and restoration. More.

UNFF AHEG2 Keeps All Options on Table for IAF

16 January 2015: The second meeting of the Open-Ended Intergovernmental Ad Hoc Expert Group on the International Arrangement on Forests (AHEG2) completed its work, setting the stage for discussions at the upcoming eleventh meeting of the UN Forum on Forests (UNFF). More.

Other News
Sustainable Development
UN Secretary-General Highlights Global Governance for Tackling Poverty, Climate Change

UN Celebrates 20th Anniversary of World Summit for Social Development

ECOSOC Hosts 2015 Youth Forum

24th AU Summit Adopts Decisions on Post-2015 Negotiations, Gender Equality, Illicit Flows

UNDP, UNFPA, UNOPS Executive Board Highlights Critical Year for Sustainable Development

UNGA President Reflects on UN Accomplishments Since 1945, Upcoming Priorities

UNDP Social and Environmental Standards Come into Effect

Scientists Call for Evidence-based DRR at Core of Sustainable Development

APEC Preparing Initiative on Economic Inequality

International Year of SIDS Closes with Reflections on Progress

World Bank Adopts GRI Taxonomy for Sustainability Reporting

UN High-Level Officials Discuss UN 'Fit for Purpose'

At Security Council Debate, UN Secretary-General Links Development, Human Rights, Security

UN General Assembly Resolution Links Sustainable Tourism, Conservation and Development

UN Secretary-General Outlines Priorities for 2015

Trade, Finance & Investment
January 2015 Climate Finance Update

World Bank Launches Regional Solar Market Initiative at Powering Africa Summit

World Bank Investments to Fuel Largest Solar Project in Central America

December 2014 Sustainable Energy Finance Update

OECD Examines Climate Finance Tracking

Chemicals Management
Pacific Islands Prioritize Mercury Waste Management

OEWG 2 Advances Preparations for Chemicals Management Conference

Post-2015 Development Agenda
Co-Facilitators Circulate Elements of Post-2015 Agenda Declaration

Symposium Outlines Challenges for SDG Implementation

UNSC Confirms Support on Post-2015 Indicator Development

Arab States Adopt Regional Recommendations on Education in Times of Conflict

UNGA President Releases Background Note, Programme for MOI Debate

UNDP Administrator Reflects on Next Steps Toward Post-2015 Development Agenda

UN Human Rights Bodies Call for Accountability, Rights References in SDGs

Co-facilitators Circulate "Indicative Elements" of FfD 3 Outcome Document

Member States Discuss Post-2015 Role of Supreme Audit Institutions

Stakeholders Address Preparatory Forum on Post-2015 Negotiations

UNGA President Holds Interactive Dialogue Ahead of High-Level Events

Water, Oceans and Wetlands
CBD Publishes Press Briefs on Wetlands

Australia Commits US$6 Million to CTI-CFF

Participants Discuss Proposals for Protecting Oceans and High Seas at GOC Event

UNECE Water Convention Parties Discuss Reporting Mechanism

Biodiversity and Wildlife
CBD Secretariat Calls for Information on Commitments to Reduce Habitat Loss and on Ecosystem Restoration

UNEP-WCMC and Partners Convene Workshop on Global Butterfly Indicator

CBD Secretariat Initiates Preparations for Working Group on Article 8(j)

Lebanon Joins CMS Raptors MoU

LAC Representatives Discusses Elements of Natural Resource Governance Compact

World Wetlands Day Celebrates "Wetlands For Our Future"

Climate and Atmosphere
Structured Expert Dialogue on 2013-2015 Review Completes its Work

WMO: 2014 Hottest Year on Record, Warming Trend Continues

Brazil, Japan Organize Informal Meeting on Further Climate Actions

US, India to Enhance Cooperation on Climate, Clean Energy

UNFCCC Launches National Contributions Web Portal

Pope Francis, Holy See Advocate Action on Climate Change

WEF Report Identifies Climate Issues as a Top Global Risk

UN Secretary-General Appoints Assistant Secretary-General on Climate Change

Scientists Warn: Four Planetary Boundaries Crossed

COP 20 and 21 Presidents Outline Expectations for 2015

Sustainable Energy
IRENA Publishes Report on Battery Storage for Renewables

SE4ALL Promotes Sustainable Energy Financing at FfD Drafting Session

Caribbean Energy Security Summit Commits to Energy Transition

SE4ALL Launches African Energy Leaders Group

IRENA Launches Online Knowledge Hub 'REsource'

China Boosts Global Renewable Energy Investments in 2014

CEM Study: Increased Profits from Reduced Energy Use in Mining

Forests, Desertification and Land Issues
LPI Expert Group Meeting Discusses Mainstreaming Gender in African Land Policy

FOREST EUROPE Agrees on Process to Update SFM Indicators

UNFF Launches Website to Support Financing for SFM

IPBES to Undertake Thematic Assessment on Land Degradation and Restoration

WDCD 2015 Slogan and Theme Announced

Rio Conventions Explore Common Indicators for Land-based Adaptation

Key meetings in the next two weeks
Ad Hoc Working Group on the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP 2-8): 8-13 February 2015. Geneva, Geneve, Switzerland

Inception Meeting of the Working Group for the Development of a Methodology for Voluntary Peer-Review of CBD Implementation: 11-13 February 2015. Tbilisi, T'Bilisi, Georgia

Fragility, Conflict and Violence Forum 2015: 11-13 February 2015. Washington D.C., US

Second Global Meeting of the Indigenous Peoples' Forum at IFAD: 12-13 February 2015. Rome, Lazio, Italy

38th Session of IFAD's Governing Council: 16-17 February 2015. Rome, Lazio, Italy

Intergovernmental Negotiations on Post-2015 Development Agenda - Second Session: 17-20 February 2015. New York City, US

2015 Substantive Session of ECOSOC: Operational Activities for Development Segment: 23-25 February 2015. New York City, US

Working Group Meeting of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition to Reduce Short-Lived Climate Pollutants (CCAC): 24-25 February 2015. Kathmandu, Bagmati, Nepal

IPCC 41: 24-27 February 2015. Nairobi, Kenya

Sustainable Land Management Week: 24-27 February 2015. Geneva, Geneve, Switzerland

High-level Thematic Debate on Crime Prevention, Criminal Justice and the Post-2015 Agenda: 25 February 2015. New York City, US

Mexico WindPower 2015: 25-26 February 2015. Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico

Expert Group Meeting on the Indicator Framework for the Post-2015 Development Agenda: 25-26 February 2015. New York City, US

Multi-stakeholder Partnerships: Making Them Work for the Post-2015 Development Agenda: 27 February 2015. New York City, US

UN Statistics Division Seminar on Nationally Owned Monitoring System for SDGs: 27 February 2015. New York City, US

IISD RS will cover the Second Intergovernmental Negotiation on the Post-2015 Development Agenda,
from 17 to 20 February 2015, from UN Headquarters, New York, United States of America

2015 Time for Global Action for People and Planet

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