Report of main proceedings for 14 December 2017
21st Meeting of the CBD Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice and 10th Meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group on Article 8(j) and Related Provisions
On Thursday morning, Article 8(j) Working Group considered: resource mobilization; progress towards Aichi Target 18 (traditional knowledge), implementation of the customary sustainable use action plan, and integration of Article 8(j) in the work of the CBD and its Protocols; finalization of tasks 7, 10 and 12 under the Article 8(j) work programme; recommendations from the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII); and a draft recommendation on the glossary. In the afternoon, SBSTTA discussed a draft recommendation on biodiversity mainstreaming and adopted all recommendations. In the evening, the Article 8(j) Working Group’s contact group on the draft guidelines on traditional knowledge repatriation, co-chaired by Basile van Havre (Canada) and Lucy Mulenkei (IIFB), convened.
WORKING GROUP ON ARTICLE 8(J)
RESOURCE MOBILIZATION: The PHILIPPINES suggested “recommending” the indicative list of elements of methodological guidance on IPLCs’ contribution to achieving the Strategic Plan’s objectives, as well as recognizing “the primacy of” and fully including traditional knowledge in relevant considerations. The IIFB, supported by BOLIVIA, suggested recognizing the importance of IPLCs’ holistic collective actions within a framework of rights, ethical principles and values, and gender-differentiated roles. INDIA highlighted the need to: recognize the intrinsic value of biodiversity and its role for sustaining livelihoods in local communities; take into account relevant national processes and legislation, and other international agreements; and define stakeholders’ rights and responsibilities. The EU, INDIA, and CANADA suggested further discussion at SBI 2.
PROGRESS IN IMPLEMENTATION: The Secretariat introduced the documentation (CBD/WG8J/10/7- 8). INDIGENOUS WOMEN’S BIODIVERSITY NETWORK called for: recognizing ICCAs’ contributions to several Aichi Targets in national and global reporting; consider ICCAs and community conservation efforts in developing guidelines on ecosystem-based approaches to climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction; and including gender assessments in sixth national reports, GBO 5 and NBSAPs.
MEXICO called for establishing an online forum to share scientific, technical and environmental information and best practices for consideration at SBSTTA 22, SBI 2 and COP 14. The EU supported completing the work programme no later than COP 15, and organizing future work according to criteria of continuity, building upon the Working Group’s work, IPLCs’ full and effective participation, focus on implementation, and efficiency. INDIA recommended, upon completion of the work programme at COP 14, identifying gaps in the implementation of Article 8(j) as part of the preparations of the post-2020 framework. ECUADOR emphasized the need to conserve the ecosystems where IPLCs are living to protect their traditional customary use.
Progress towards Aichi Target 18: The DOMINICAN REPUBLIC called for further progress in achieving Aichi Target 18, and, with the PHILIPPINES, capacity building. The IIFB and INDIGENOUS WOMEN’S BIODIVERSITY NETWORK expressed concern about limited progress, and proposed encouraging parties to strengthen efforts to ensure IPLCs’ full participation in implementing NBSAPs, particularly women and youth. The EU noted the importance of making available information on progress and best practices. TE KOPU and NATIVE XP recommended addressing gaps on reporting and monitoring on traditional knowledge.
Customary sustainable use: The FOREST PEOPLES PROGRAMME recommended focusing on enhanced understanding to build partnerships and collaborations with IPLCs at local and national levels, building on the recommendations of the Local Biodiversity Outlooks (LBOs); noted limited national reporting on customary sustainable use; and suggested convening an expert meeting to develop the second phase of the customary sustainable use action plan. TE KOPU and NATIVE XP recommended fulfilling the action plan; holding consultations with indigenous regions to enhance participation in the CBD implementation; and encouraging parties to support the IIFB in convening regional and global dialogues before SBI 2.
Integration of Article 8(j): On options for fully integrating Article 8(j) in the work of the Convention and its Protocols, CANADA suggested a hybrid option of enhanced integration and a permanent body, deferring decision to SBI 2 and ensuring IPLCs’ full participation. JAPAN, MEXICO, and MOROCCO preferred enhanced integration by applying, when addressing matters of direct relevance to IPLCs in CBD subsidiary bodies, the enhanced participation mechanisms used by the Article 8(j) Working Group. The IIFB called for both options to be adopted. CHINA requested an analysis of the options’ respective advantages and disadvantages. NORWAY and AUSTRALIA requested more time to consider the options.
TASKS 7, 10 AND 12: The Secretariat introduced relevant documentation (CBD/WG8J/10/4). CANADA agreed on the need for further work at the Working Group’s next meeting and its consideration in the post-2020 framework. The PHILIPPINES supported gathering best practices and studies to inform the development of rules and laws to protect IPLCs’ rights. MOROCCO noted the importance of relying on concrete experiences to better understand PIC. SOUTH AFRICA supported gathering experience on the implementation of the Mo’otz Kuxtal Guidelines for the post-2020 process. The IIFB, supported by NEW ZEALAND, requested more time to consider how to closely link proposals with the post-2020 framework.
A contact group was established to address progress in implementation together with tasks 7, 10 and 12, to ensure a coherent outcome as both agenda items refer to future work.
UNPFII RECOMMENDATIONS: The Secretariat introduced relevant documentation (CBD/WG8J/10/9), noting that UNPFII 16 and 17 did not address recommendations specifically to the CBD. CANADA favored further cooperation with UNESCO, the World Bank and UN Habitat. MEXICO requested the Secretariat to inform parties on the development of issues of mutual interest with the Inter-Agency Support Group on Indigenous Peoples’ Issues.
The CBD ALLIANCE, supported by the PHILIPPINES, proposed: recommending that the Inter-Agency Support Group take up the issue of environmental defenders, including indigenous ones, urging parties to protect them; and urging parties to implement UNPFII recommendations to involve, and seek free PIC from, IPLCs whose territories overlap wholly or partly with proposed protected areas or other area-based management tools.
GLOSSARY: JAPAN, opposed by the EU and COLOMBIA, preferred that the COP “takes note,” rather than “adopts,” the glossary. MEXICO, supported by BRAZIL, opposed by AUSTRALIA and CANADA, requested referring to the glossary as a living “instrument,” rather than “resource.” JAPAN opposed the whole paragraph on future work.
On terms contained in the glossary, ARGENTINA, supported by BRAZIL and opposed by BOLIVIA, expressed concern about traditional “biological” resources and the omission of “tangible and intangible resources,” pointing to possible implications for the implementation of the Nagoya Protocol.
SCENARIOS FOR THE 2050 VISION: Delegates continued discussing a draft recommendation. BOLIVIA offered, and delegates agreed to, compromise language that technology developments may have positive or negative impacts on the achievement of the three CBD objectives, as well as on IPLCs’ lifestyles and traditional knowledge.
MEXICO offered compromise language for the annex, noting: the integrated and indivisible nature of the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda implies that the achievement of all goals is necessary, and scenarios and models may inform the choice of policies and measures and their limitations, highlighting the need for policy coherence. The EU, opposed by BRAZIL, reiterated the need for a reference to land use and land use change.
BIODIVERSITY MAINSTREAMING: On requesting the Secretariat to prepare, for SBI 2 consideration, a proposal for a programmatic approach to mainstreaming, delegates agreed to: clarify the request, by referring to a “long-term strategic approach to mainstreaming”; and indicating that it will entail identifying key tasks and priorities, including best practices, methodologies, experiences and tools, as well as challenges and gaps, to ensure CBD implementation in a manner coherent with the 2030 Agenda and the 2050 vision for biodiversity, ensuring broad participation; and request the Secretariat to prepare draft terms of reference for a possible ad hoc expert group to assist with this work. The UK suggested that the Informal Advisory Group tasked to assist the Secretariat be time-limited and work electronically.
On the annex providing information for the Secretariat to prepare an additional note for mainstreaming for SBI 2 consideration, CANADA suggested deleting: reference to policy gaps that hinder biodiversity mainstreaming; and an explicit list of key elements drawn from SBSTTA 21 meeting documents.
ADOPTION OF RECOMMENDATIONS: Delegates adopted recommendations on: tools to evaluate the effectiveness of policy instruments (CBD/SBSTTA/21/L2), new and emerging issues (CBD/SBSTTA/21/L3), and GBO 5 (CBD/SBSTTA/21/L4), without amendment; and biodiversity and health, with a minor amendment (CBD/SBSTTA/21/L6). On the revised draft recommendation on wild meat (CBD/SBSTTA/21/L5), FINLAND recommended reinserting the reference to the estimates of yearly extinction rates after the peer review is complete. The Secretariat pointed to a footnote indicating that the annex may be revised due to the work pursuant to this recommendation. Delegates adopted the recommendation, with bracketed options to “welcome or “take note of” the voluntary guidance.
On a revised draft recommendation on scenarios for the 2050 vision (CBD/SBSTTA/21/L7), the EU reported on agreement reached through informal consultations to: delete reference to the impacts of land use change on biodiversity in an invitation to the scientific community to promote coherence in scenarios; retain reference to land use change in respect to habitat loss; and introduce a reference to “change of land management” with regard to the need to ensure that climate change adaptation and mitigation measures do not negatively impact biodiversity. The recommendation was adopted with these amendments.
Delegates adopted a revised draft recommendation on biodiversity mainstreaming (CBD/SBSTTA/21/L8) with a bracketed recommendation to SBI 2 to consider a number of elements in preparing its recommendation to COP.
CLOSING PLENARY: Rapporteur Montezuma introduced the draft report (CBD/SBSTTA/21/L1), which was adopted without amendments. PERU reported on the Coalition for Centers of Origin’s work towards achieving Aichi Target 13 (genetic diversity), and also to end hunger and promote better nutrition and agricultural sustainability. EGYPT reported on preparations for COP 14 under the theme, “Investing in biodiversity for people and the planet.” BRAZIL reported on preparing a draft COP decision to support creating zero-extinction sites. Mexico, for GRULAC, called on parties to become more proactive and ambitious with only three years left before the date for achieving most Aichi Targets. Ukraine, for Central and Eastern Europe, welcomed work on scenarios and its contributions to the post-2020 framework. The EU considered that the meeting made progress towards laying the foundations for follow up on the Strategic Plan.
Executive Secretary Palmer stated that “we are one step closer to the transformation we are seeking for the period post-2020.” SBSTTA 21 Chair Lim underscored the need to continue to strive to achieve the Aichi Targets and take actions on the ground. She gaveled the meeting to a close at 6:29 pm.
IN THE CORRIDORS
The awaited discussion of a SBSTTA recommendation on biodiversity mainstreaming focused on the idea to develop a “long-term strategic approach” to this issue, with a view to addressing in more depth the new sectors at future COPs, rather than trying to “squeeze them all in” at COP 14. “Mainstreaming is a key to transformational change and it needs to be woven into the post-2020 framework,” commented a delegated. Another, however, chipped in more prosaically, “We simply did not have enough time to discuss all the well-known challenges of mainstreaming biodiveristy into these new sectors,” pointing to the fact that the draft recommendations to COP is likely to get more attention at the week-long SBI 2 meeting. “Mainstreaming biodiversity in all these sectors will be far from easy,” a veteran added, following the closing plenary, “but if we do, the gains will be great, and if we don’t, the perils even greater.”