Summary report, 7–11 May 2012
4th Meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group on the Review of Implementation (WGRI 4) of the CBD
The fourth meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group on the Review of Implementation (WGRI 4) of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) convened at the headquarters of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) in Montreal, Canada, from 7-11 May 2012.
WGRI 4 adopted eight recommendations that will be submitted to the eleventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the CBD, to be held from 8-19 October 2012, in Hyderabad, India. The recommendations address: the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets; the Strategy for Resource Mobilization; the Financial Mechanism (GEF); the message to the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20); cooperation with other conventions; biodiversity for poverty eradication and development; engagement of business; and South-South cooperation.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE CONVENTION
The CBD entered into force on 29 December 1993. There are currently 193 parties to the Convention, which aims to promote the conservation of biodiversity, the sustainable use of its components, and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the use of genetic resources. The COP is the governing body of the Convention. It is assisted by the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA), which is mandated, under CBD Article 25, to provide the COP with advice relating to the Convention’s implementation. COP 7 in 2004 established the WGRI with the mandate to address a range of implementation-related issues, such as progress in the implementation of the CBD’s successive Strategic Plans and impacts and effectiveness of existing CBD processes.
COP 1: At its first meeting (November - December 1994, Nassau, the Bahamas), the COP set the general framework for the Convention’s implementation by establishing the Clearing House Mechanism (CHM) and SBSTTA and by designating the Global Environment Facility (GEF) as the interim financial mechanism.
COP 2: At its second meeting (November 1995, Jakarta, Indonesia), the COP adopted a decision on marine and coastal biodiversity (the Jakarta Mandate) and established the Open-ended Ad Hoc Working Group on Biosafety to elaborate a protocol on biosafety, specifically focusing on transboundary movement of living modified organisms (LMOs) that may have an adverse effect on biodiversity.
COP 3: At its third meeting (November 1996, Buenos Aires, Argentina), the COP adopted work programmes on agricultural and forest biodiversity, as well as a Memorandum of Understanding with the GEF, and called for an intersessional workshop on Article 8(j) and related provisions.
COP 4: At its fourth meeting (May 1998, Bratislava, Slovakia), the COP established a Working Group on Article 8(j) and a panel of experts on access and benefit sharing (ABS), adopted the Global Taxonomy Initiative (GTI) and a work programme on marine and coastal biodiversity, and took decisions on inland water, agricultural and forest biodiversity, and cooperation with other agreements.
EXCOP: Following six meetings of the Biosafety Working Group between 1996 and 1999, delegates at the first Extraordinary Meeting of the COP (ExCOP) (February 1999, Cartagena, Colombia) did not agree on a compromise package to finalize negotiations on a biosafety protocol, and the meeting was suspended. The resumed ExCOP (January 2000, Montreal, Canada) adopted the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, and established the Intergovernmental Committee for the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety to undertake preparations for COP/MOP 1. The Protocol addresses the safe transfer, handling and use of LMOs that may have an adverse effect on biodiversity, taking into account human health, with a specific focus on transboundary movements.
COP 5: At its fifth meeting (May 2000, Nairobi, Kenya), the COP adopted work programmes on dry and sub-humid lands and on agricultural biodiversity and decisions on ABS, Article 8(j) (traditional knowledge), the ecosystem approach, sustainable use, biodiversity and tourism, invasive alien species (IAS), incentive measures, GTI, and the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation (GSPC).
COP 6: At its sixth meeting (April 2002, The Hague, the Netherlands), the COP adopted the Convention’s Strategic Plan for 2002-2010, including the target to reduce significantly the rate of biodiversity loss by 2010. The meeting also adopted: an expanded work programme on forest biodiversity; the Bonn Guidelines on ABS; guiding principles for IAS; the GSPC; a work programme for the GTI; and decisions on incentive measures and Article 8(j).
COP 7: At its seventh meeting (February 2004, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia), the COP adopted work programmes on mountain biodiversity, protected areas (PAs), and technology transfer and cooperation, and mandated the Working Group on ABS to initiate negotiations on an international regime on ABS. The COP also adopted: a decision to review implementation of the Convention, its Strategic Plan and progress towards achieving the 2010 target; the Akwé: Kon Guidelines for cultural, environmental and social impact assessments; the Addis Ababa Principles and Guidelines for sustainable use; and decisions on Communication, Education and Public Awareness (CEPA), incentive measures, inland waters, and marine and coastal biodiversity.
COP 8: At its eighth meeting (March 2006, Curitiba, Brazil), the COP adopted a work programme on island biodiversity and decisions on a range of issues including: Article 8(j); CEPA; cooperation with other conventions and private sector engagement; PAs, including high seas PAs; incentive measures; biodiversity and climate change; and forest, marine and coastal, and agricultural biodiversity. COP 8 reaffirmed the COP 5 ban on the field-testing of genetic use restriction technologies, and instructed the ABS Working Group to complete its work with regard to an international regime on ABS at the earliest possible time before COP 10.
COP 9: At its ninth meeting (May 2008, Bonn, Germany), the COP adopted: a roadmap for the negotiation of the international ABS regime before the 2010 deadline; scientific criteria and guidance for marine areas in need of protection; and the Resource Mobilization Strategy for the Convention. It established the Ad Hoc Technical Working Group on Biodiversity and Climate Change, and adopted decisions concerning a wide range of issues, including biofuels, genetically modified trees, PAs, and language cautioning against ocean fertilization.
WGRI 3: The third meeting of the CBD Working Group on the Review of Implementation of the Convention (WGRI) (May 2010, Nairobi), adopted twelve recommendations to COP 10, including: an updated and revised strategic plan for the post-2010 period, which remained bracketed pending resolution of financial issues and negotiations on ABS; a proposed UN Decade on Biodiversity 2011-2020; business engagement; a proposed biodiversity technology initiative; the multi-year programme of work of the Convention for the period 2011-2020; integration of biodiversity into poverty eradication and development; and a science-policy interface on biodiversity, ecosystem services and human well being.
COP 10: At its tenth meeting (October 2010, Nagoya, Japan), the COP adopted as a package: the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization; the CBD Strategic Plan for the period 2011-2020, including a mission, strategic goals and the Aichi Targets aiming to inspire broad-based action by parties and stakeholders; and a decision on activities and indicators for the implementation of the Resource Mobilization Strategy adopted at COP 9. The COP also adopted over 40 decisions, including on: inland water biodiversity, sustainable use, climate change and biodiversity, GTI, IAS, and ways and means to improve SBSTTA’s effectiveness.
WGRI 4 REPORT
On Monday, 7 May 2012, on behalf of Ryu Matsumoto, President of the COP, Kazuaki Hosino (Japan) highlighted the importance of the implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and the achievement of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. New CBD Executive Secretary Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias noted that this meeting and the twelve tabled draft recommendations represent the first opportunity for parties to review progress towards the achievement of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. He highlighted challenges in implementing the Convention, including the mismatch between commitments and implementation, and encouraged more focused negotiations at the next COP. He called for consideration of: integrating cross-cutting issues; reducing the complexity of the CBD portfolio; revising National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs); strategic resource mobilization; efficient monitoring of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets; support for least developed countries (LDCs) and small island developing states (SIDS); community-based approaches to conservation and sustainable use to complement work on protected areas; and the timely ratification of the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization.
Delegates adopted the agenda and organization of work (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/1 and Add.1/Rev.1) without amendments. Snežana Prokić (Serbia) was elected as rapporteur.
This report summarizes discussions and recommendations on each agenda item.
IMPLEMENTATION OF THE STRATEGIC PLAN FOR BIODIVERSITY 2011-2020 AND PROGRESS TOWARDS THE AICHI BIODIVERSITY TARGETS
Delegates considered documents on review of progress in implementation of the Strategic Plan and review of progress in providing support to parties in the context of the Strategic Plan and Aichi Biodiversity Targets in plenary on Monday, Thursday and Friday and in Contact Group I, co-chaired by Spencer Thomas (Grenada) and Andrew Bignell (New Zealand), on Tuesday and Wednesday (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/2 and UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/3). Delegates initially discussed separate non-papers on the Strategic Plan and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets and then agreed to discuss a merged text. Delegates debated a number of issues, inter alia: the relationship among the Strategic Plan, the Aichi Biodiversity Targets and other agenda items; implementation levels; the Clearing-House Mechanism (CHM); progress in updating NBSAPs; and capacity building.
Several parties stressed the relationship among the Strategic Plan, the Aichi Biodiversity Targets and other agenda items are closely related. Zambia called for jointly addressing the implementation of the Strategic Plan and resource mobilization, and Mexico highlighted the need for formal linkages between the Strategic Plan and resource mobilization. Brazil advocated including text that emphasizes the linkages between the Strategic Plan, financial resources, technology transfer and benefit sharing. Republic of Korea recognized the importance of integrating the Aichi Biodiversity Targets into national strategies to strengthen the legal basis for their implementation. The European Union (EU), on behalf of its 27 member states, supported developing a holistic approach to ongoing initiatives aimed at achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, rather than proposing new ones. Canada urged that the draft recommendations closely follow COP 10 Decision X/2 on the Strategic Plan. Switzerland, supported by Uganda, proposed text requesting parties to participate in a peer review process on the status of implementation of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, to be agreed before 2015.
Delegates discussed the appropriate level of implementation for various activities mentioned in the documents. Norway, with Yemen, stressed partnership and cooperation at all levels to meet the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. Guatemala and Venezuela underscored that national strategies should take a bottom-up approach and prioritize benefits to local communities. Mexico stressed the need to disseminate information to the appropriate levels. A number of parties called for including that actions take place at “national, regional and subregional levels” throughout the document.
On the CHM work programme in support of the Strategic Plan, Jordan, supported by Sudan, called for establishing focal points to facilitate information exchange. Mexico and Peru said the CHM should consist of a website as well as a network of experts for decision-making. Canada proposed emphasizing connections between central and national CHMs. Burundi asked the Secretariat to help increase the visibility of national CHMs. Japan requested the Secretariat to implement the work programme of the CHM and provide updates. Delegates also agreed to ask the Secretariat to “continue to implement” the use of automated translation tools to facilitate information exchange.
Many countries noted their lack of progress in updating NBSAPs, citing lack of financing and capacity. Georgia, on behalf of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), called for more capacity-building activities. Mexico, with Georgia and others, called for building the capacity of national focal points. Botswana noted that support is especially needed on various thematic issues, including the Nagoya Protocol and The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) study. Burkina Faso expressed concern regarding the GEF’s slow process of allocating funds for implementing the Strategic Plan. The International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity (IIFB) bemoaned the lack of mainstreaming of community-based natural resource management and sustainable use in NBSAPs.
Many countries recognized the exemplary contributions that had been made through the Japan Biodiversity Fund, with Japan highlighting his country’s support for capacity building in developing countries. Many interventions focused on “continued,” “additional,” and/or “increased” support for revision and update of NBSAPs. The EU preferred that parties and other governments “continue to provide support for” revision and updating of NBSAPs and “provide additional support” to enhance stakeholder consultations. Brazil proposed “to continue to provide and at the same time increase support for” the revision and update of NBSAPs.
On Wednesday, in the contact group, Kiribati, on behalf of the Pacific Island States, proposed a capacity-building network of national and regional centers of excellence on South-South and triangular cooperation to support implementation of the Strategic Plan and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. Mexico proposed referring to centers of excellence in “biodiversity.” Delegates welcomed the proposal but debated whether to “take into account” South-South and triangular cooperation. Japan suggested urging the establishment of “a capacity-building network of national and regional centers of excellence, taking into account the promotion of South-South cooperation, supported by North-South cooperation and triangular cooperation.” China suggested text that strengthens North-South cooperation while considering South-South cooperation and triangular cooperation. Following informal consultations, China and Japan agreed to delete references to North-South, South-South and triangular cooperation.
On Thursday, on noting the potential contribution of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) on capacity building, many countries, including the EU, Norway, Brazil, Australia, Saudi Arabia and others, supported requesting the Secretariat to collaborate with IPBES. China objected and proposed requesting the Secretariat to “strengthen North-South cooperation” in addition to helping establish a capacity-building network of national and regional centers of excellence in biodiversity. The EU added that such requests should occur “in collaboration with IPBES, as appropriate.”
In Friday’s plenary, on a paragraph asking the Secretariat to undertake a review of the short- and long-term impacts of conflict and disasters on biodiversity, Mexico favored deleting the text, citing the existence of a formal procedure for introducing new and emerging issues for consideration by the parties. Somalia, who originally proposed the text, urged that it remain in brackets and be left for parties’ consideration at COP 11. Brazil, with Pakistan, called for retaining the text, noting its relevance to the implementation of the Strategic Plan. Mali said that the text should be clarified, so that “conflict” refers only to armed conflict. Following informal consultations, delegates agreed to the text and considered deletion of reference to “short- and long-term” impacts, and text suggestions by Mexico to, inter alia, invite the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director to integrate this work and ask the Secretariat to submit a report to the next meeting of SBSTTA, in keeping with SBSTTA procedures for considering new and emerging issues.
On highlighting the need for adequate means of implementation, both Brazil and Mexico called for keeping in brackets the entire text on enabling developing countries to implement the Strategic Plan and urging the effective commitment of the developed country parties related to the provision of financial resources, transfer of technology and benefit sharing, for discussion at COP 11. The EU, supported by Canada, Norway and Switzerland, proposed: referring to CBD Article 20 on financial resources in its entirety, rather than only paragraph 4 on the commitments of developed and developing countries; urging “implementation of commitments of all parties;” and deleting “benefit-sharing.” Brazil, supported by Argentina and Uganda, preferred retaining the original text. Delegates adopted the final recommendation with amendments but left phrases on continued and additional financial support and the paragraph on adequate means for implementation bracketed.
Final Recommendation: In the recommendation on the Implementation of the Strategic Plan and Progress towards the Aichi Biodiversity Targets (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/L.3), the WGRI, inter alia:
• emphasizes the importance, and challenges, of setting specific, measurable, ambitious, realistic and time-bound national targets as a means of implementing the Strategic Plan and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets; and
• invites parties to report on their plans for and progress on revising and/or updating their NBSAPs and national targets, preferably by 30 June 2012, so that this information can be made available to COP 11.
The WGRI requests the Executive Secretary to, inter alia:
• compile relevant information from parties, including revised and updated NBSAPs and examples of best practices related to national targets, and update the information contained in this document and make it available for consideration by COP 11; and
• redouble efforts to promote the Strategic Plan and the Nagoya Protocol at international, regional and subregional events organized or attended by the Secretariat to assist national actions in pursuing ratification or accession of the Nagoya Protocol.
The WGRI recommends that the COP, inter alia:
• consider an update of this review in light of information available at COP 11 and issue guidance as appropriate; and
• urge those parties that have not yet done so to develop, revise or update, as appropriate, their NBSAPs in line with the Strategic Plan.
The WGRI further recommends that the COP consider four options, each of which contains bracketed text on continuing to provide additional support and at the same time to increase support, inter alia:
• call upon parties and invite others to continue to provide additional support for the revision and updating of NBSAPs, to enhance wider stakeholder consultations for setting national targets and indicators at the national level and to ensure completion and review of NBSAPs in a timely manner [option 1];
• call upon parties and invite others to continue to provide support for the revision and updating of NBSAPs and to provide additional support to enhance wider stakeholder consultations for setting national targets and indicators at the national level, and to ensure completion and review of NBSAPs in a timely manner [option 2];
• call upon parties and invite others to continue to provide and at the same time increase support for the revision and updating of NBSAPs and to provide additional support to enhance wider stakeholder consultations for setting national targets and indicators at the national level, and to ensure completion and review of NBSAPs in a timely manner [option 3]; or
• call upon parties and invite others to continue to provide support for the revision and updating of NBSAPs, to enhance wider stakeholder consultations for setting national targets and indicators at the national level, and to provide additional support to ensure completion and review of NBSAPs in a timely manner [option 4].
The WGRI further recommends that the COP:
• welcome the establishment of the Japan Biodiversity Fund and express its appreciation to Japan for its support to developing countries, particularly the LDCs and SIDS, and countries with economies in transition, in implementing the Strategic Plan and achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets;
• reiterate the request to the Executive Secretary to facilitate the continued exchange of best practices and lessons learned from the preparation, updating and revision of NBSAPs, through appropriate forums and mechanisms, such as the CHM, and strengthened cooperation with regional and subregional processes, South-South cooperation and voluntary peer-review;
• welcome the work programme for the CHM in support of the Strategic Plan and agree to: keep the work programme for the CHM under review to contribute to the implementation of the Convention and its Strategic Plan and to promote and facilitate technical and scientific cooperation, knowledge sharing and information exchange; strengthen communication with and build capacity of the national focal point for the CHM; call on parties to share information through national CHM or other relevant mechanisms on results from monitoring progress towards the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, and for projects funded through Articles 20 and 21 of the Convention;
• request the Executive Secretary to establish a standard information-exchange mechanism for the CHM to interconnect the central and national CHMs and use automated translation tools to facilitate exchange of technical and scientific information, in line with Articles 17 and 18 of the Convention;
• request the Executive Secretary to engage in a process towards establishing a capacity-building network of national and regional centers of excellence in biodiversity to support the implementation of the Strategic Plan and achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets in developing countries, particularly LDCs and SIDS, and in countries with economies in transition, and to collaborate with IPBES, as appropriate;
• request the GEF, urge parties, in particular developed country parties, and invite donor organizations to support enhanced technical and scientific cooperation and the CHM for implementation of the Strategic Plan;
• request the Executive Secretary to promote the implementation of the Strategy for the UN Decade on Biodiversity; and
• request the Executive Secretary to undertake a review of the short- and long-term impacts of disasters and conflicts on biodiversity and ways and means to take action for implementing the Strategic Plan and achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets under such conditions, and invite the Secretariat to submit a report to the next meeting of SBSTTA in accordance with procedure.
REVIEW OF IMPLEMENTATION OF THE STRATEGY FOR RESOURCE MOBILIZATION: Delegates discussed resource mobilization (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/6) in plenary on Monday and Friday, and in Contact Group II, co-chaired by Ines Verleye (Belgium) and M.F. Farooqui (India), on Wednesday and Thursday.
In plenary on Monday, Mexico, Senegal and South Africa stressed that adequate finance underpins successful implementation of the Convention. The EU recommended balancing financial with human and technical resources. Ecuador called for “fresh and additional resources,” and Canada noted that resources may have to be leveraged in a more “creative” manner. Peru pointed to opportunities for mobilizing resources through the private sector and local-level engagement. Brazil, with Guatemala, said flexible financing is important but should not substitute for existing commitments under the Convention.
South Africa, supported by Mexico, Switzerland and Senegal, called for an online finance portal to be established within the GEF, adding that capacity building and technology transfer are crucial to the success of such a portal.
In Wednesday’s contact group, countries differed over whether to invite parties to provide “continued” or “additional” funds, with the EU and Canada favoring the former and Ecuador, Brazil and Zambia preferring the latter. Delegates debated how to urge parties to consider options for meeting resource allocation. Brazil said “sources” include public and private resources. Mexico suggested considering “all possible sources and needs.” The EU preferred “mobilization” rather than “allocation” and proposed “resources” instead of “sources.” Ecuador, South Africa and Brazil preferred “required” rather than “adequate.” Mexico suggested “needed” resources as a compromise. Zambia, supported by the African Group, requested deletion of “mobilization.” Delegates also agreed to urge parties to consider all possible sources and means to meet levels of resources needed.
On Friday, Co-Chair Verleye reported to plenary that all text related to intersessional work on resource mobilization was free of brackets, while brackets remain on some draft decisions that are still “premature,” including on whether to invite the financial mechanism and other institutions to “continue to allocate” or “allocate additional” funds.
Ghana, supported by the Philippines, stressed the urgency of developing the preliminary reporting framework and proposed amending the text accordingly. Brazil agreed on the urgency of the framework but cautioned that decisions on the baseline should be decided at COP 11. Delegates eventually agreed to invite parties to use the preliminary framework to provide information to the Secretariat by the end of June 2012.
Delegates adopted the document on resource mobilization without amendment. The final text retained brackets in four paragraphs.
Final Recommendation: In the recommendation on the review of implementation of the strategy for resource mobilization (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/L.7), the WGRI recommends that the COP, inter alia:
• encourage parties to undertake institutional mapping/analysis, covering the whole range of biodiversity resourcing options, as part of the process of developing country-specific resource mobilization strategies within the framework of revising their NBSAPs;
• encourage parties to integrate national resource mobilization strategies, including existing needs assessments, into the decision-making process on their funding targets, in order to address the funding gap as soon as possible; and
• urge parties to consider all possible sources and means that can help to meet the level of resources needed, in accordance with Article 20 and consistent with Decision X/3 of the Convention.
THE FINANCIAL MECHANISM: REVIEW OF GEF-5 AND NEEDS FOR GEF-6: Delegates discussed the financial mechanism (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/7) in plenary on Monday and Friday, and in contact group II on Wednesday and Thursday. On Monday, Gilles Kleitz (France) provided the plenary with an overview of the first draft of the GEF-6 needs assessment, noting that a final draft will be presented to COP 11. Preliminary results of the needs assessment indicated that between US$17 billion and US$41 billion will be needed from GEF-6, including GEF-leveraged funds, to implement the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. The EU welcomed the focus on implementation but noted that cost estimates should not be included in the recommendations. Canada said that more analysis is required to put forward a programme for GEF-6. Australia noted a wide funding disparity between GEF-5 and GEF-6, and discussions ensued on whether to recognize the increase of funds made available under GEF-5 while asking for an increase in financial contributions during the GEF-6 period.
With regard to facilitating the mobilization of financial resources beyond the replenishment of the GEF Trust Fund, delegates accepted a proposal from Canada, supported by Switzerland, to replace “GEF, regional development banks, and the Conference of the Parties” with “GEF, its network of implementing agencies, other international financial institutions and development organizations, national governments, and the private sector.”
The contact group agreed to text requesting the expert group conducting the GEF-6 needs assessment to consider the work of the high-level panel on financing for biodiversity and other relevant technical information on the costs of implementing the Strategic Plan. Delegates decided to delete reference to detailed programmatic priorities in text requesting the GEF to implement a four-year outcome-oriented framework of programme priorities for the period 2014-2018 and report back to COP 13.
On Friday, plenary considered the financial mechanism paper as a Conference Room Paper (CRP).
Final Recommendation: In the recommendation on the financial mechanism (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/CRP.7), the WGRI recommends that the COP, inter alia:
• adopt a four-year outcome-oriented framework of programme priorities for the period 2014-2018 and request the GEF to implement it and report back to COP 13;
• encourage the GEF to further improve the timeliness of providing financial support;
• emphasize that the Strategic Plan and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets provide the overall framework for the implementation of the Convention for the decade, including for the activities during the period of GEF-6 (2014-2018); and
• take note of the range of funding needs estimated for GEF-6, which includes both what might be provided through the replenishment of the GEF trust fund for the biodiversity focal area as well as what might be provided through other funds leveraged through the financial mechanism.
MESSAGE TO THE UNITED NATIONS CONFERENCE ON SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT (RIO+20)
This topic was addressed on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday in plenary, and on Wednesday in Contact Group I. On this issue (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/4 and UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/8) the Secretariat invited delegates to discuss options for sending a technical and/or political message to the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20) and to discuss the procedure for its presentation. Executive Secretary Dias reported that the Rio+20 process currently has “too much text” and recommended providing a brief, focused message. Chair Hosino proposed dropping the technical message (Annex I) and retaining the political message (Annex II), and attaching the Strategic Plan to the message.
Many delegates favored sending a single message to Rio+20, stressing the need to include mention of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets and the Strategic Plan. Delegates considered references to, inter alia, funding, equitable sharing and access to benefits of genetic resources, conservation of biodiversity for livelihoods and the green economy, and the three objectives of the Convention. Ghana urged stressing that biodiversity should be the primary environmental issue for the global community.
Delegates eventually agreed to reference biodiversity as “the fundamental basis for sustainable development” and recognize “implementing the Strategic Plan and achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets as essential prerequisites to conserve biodiversity and achieve sustainable development.”
The final message includes the addition of a title “Living in Harmony with Nature,” and was adopted in plenary on Friday afternoon without amendment.
Final Recommendation: In its recommendation (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/L.6), the WGRI invites the President of the COP to deliver the message on the importance of sustainable development, in line with the annex and the Strategic Plan, to Rio+20. It further invites national focal points and others to share the annex and the Strategic Plan with officials in charge of the Rio+20 preparations, to ensure that the importance of biodiversity is fully reflected in national positions.
The annex provides an overview of the importance of biodiversity for sustainable development, highlighting, inter alia, that:
• the CBD was opened for signature 20 years ago at the Rio Conference on Environment and Development, recognizing that the earth’s biodiversity forms the basis of our health, cultures, wealth, and our well-being;
• immense progress has been made, leading to the adoption and entry into force of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, the Nagoya Protocol and the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress;
• mainstreaming the value of biodiversity into national policies, and in private sector decision-making, has resulted in progress towards sustainable development and poverty eradication;
• the Strategic Plan, including the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, was adopted at COP 10 to assist in safeguarding biodiversity for future generation;
• mobilization of financial resources, from all sources, should increase substantially, but there is a need to ensure that adequate and timely financial resources are mobilized; and
• world leaders should ensure that biodiversity considerations are integrated in all the relevant outcomes of Rio+20.
BIODIVERSITY FOR POVERTY ERADICATION AND DEVELOPMENT
This topic was addressed on Tuesday and Friday in plenary and in the contact group on Wednesday. On Tuesday morning, the Secretariat introduced the item on integrating biodiversity into poverty eradication and development (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/5). M.F. Farooqui (India) provided an overview of the outcomes of the First Expert Meeting on Biodiversity for Poverty Eradication and Development that met in Dehradun, India in December 2011. He noted that the Expert Group discussed ways in which to build capacity, mainstream payments for ecosystem services and assign values to natural resources. He said the revised outcomes of the meeting will be submitted for consideration at COP 11.
South Africa underscored the importance of biodiversity for impoverished communities, while Mali stressed the role of traditional knowledge and lessons learned when integrating biodiversity into poverty eradication and development plans. The Philippines proposed mentioning safeguards to ensure traditional user rights in policy and project design. Ghana requested that the Executive Secretary report on progress in mainstreaming poverty eradication and development at COP 12. The EU said the CBD should avoid overlap and duplication with other fora. Brazil, supported by Uruguay, stressed sustainable biotrade, and cautioned against trade barriers. Argentina said the CBD is not the appropriate forum for addressing poverty eradication.
IIFB stressed the role of indigenous peoples, including their right to free, prior and informed consent, in the planning, design, and implementation of biodiversity and development programmes.
On Wednesday afternoon, Japan called for including text on “mainstreaming biodiversity into poverty eradication and development processes by fulfilling the three objectives of the Convention.” Egypt queried the meaning of “customary and traditional user rights” in the text. The Philippines responded that these are unwritten laws and customs that are still respected.
On Thursday morning, Ghana proposed, and delegates agreed, that the Expert Group should complete its work by COP 12. Burkina Faso suggested that the Executive Secretary “transmit” instead of “compile” the report on the progress of the Expert Group.
On Friday, in plenary, the draft recommendation on Biodiversity for Poverty Eradication and Development was adopted without amendment.
Final Recommendation: In the recommendation (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/L.2), the WGRI recommends the COP, inter alia:
• decide that the Expert Group on Biodiversity for Poverty Eradication and Development continue its work and submit a report before COP 12 for moving towards a road map for integrating biodiversity into poverty eradication and development in the context of the Strategic Plan and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets;
• encourage all partners and stakeholders to protect and encourage the customary use of biological resources, in accordance with traditional cultural practices that are compatible with conservation or sustainable use requirements;
• request the Executive Secretary to transmit a report on the progress of the Expert Group on Biodiversity for Poverty Eradication and Development for consideration at COP 12; and
• invite the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and other relevant organizations to make available best practices on integrating biodiversity into poverty eradication and development through the CHM.
COOPERATION WITH OTHER CONVENTIONS
Delegates discussed cooperation with the other biodiversity-related conventions and Rio conventions (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/8) on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.
On Tuesday, Mexico highlighted the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora’s (CITES) approach to cooperation with other conventions and called for strengthening coordination and cooperation among multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs). He also proposed adding reference to IPBES. Switzerland underscored the crucial importance of cooperation, recognizing the role of the Liaison Group of the Biodiversity-related Conventions in facilitating the implementation of MEAs. The EU, supported by Norway, emphasized that it is timely to focus on cooperation at the national level, with NBSAPs being a key tool for providing national frameworks.
On Thursday, delegates considered and made minor amendments to UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/CRP.2 on cooperation with other conventions.
On Friday, delegates adopted the draft recommendation without amendment.
Final Recommendation: In the recommendation (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/L.5), WGRI recommends that the COP, inter alia:
• reiterate the importance of cooperation among the biodiversity-related conventions and the Rio conventions for achieving full implementation of the CBD and the Strategic Plan;
• welcome the work carried out under the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) and CITES to support parties to incorporate the objectives of these conventions in the revision of their NBSAPs;
• welcome the establishment of IPBES and encourage the platform to provide relevant biodiversity information in order to support the implementation of the objectives of the CBD and the Strategic Plan; and
• stress the role of the NBSAPs in developing a coherent approach at the national level, encouraging parties to incorporate the objectives of the biodiversity related-conventions and the Rio conventions into their revised NBSAPs, as appropriate, and supporting them with all sources and means available.
ENGAGEMENT OF BUSINESS
Delegates discussed engagement of business (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/9) on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.
On Tuesday, noting that voluntary standards are not a substitute for binding rules and regulations, the Philippines called for text on adopting policies that halt biodiversity loss. On inviting parties to adopt biodiversity-friendly policies to leverage market forces, Venezuela proposed “to take into account” rather than “adopt.” The EU highlighted useful information on incentive measures and suggested summarizing best practices on business engagement for COP 11. Ghana offered text calling on business to adopt revised International Finance Corporation (IFC) Performance Standard 6, on biodiversity conservation and sustainable management of living natural resources, and inviting parties to enforce biodiversity-friendly policies. Ghana, Ethiopia and EcoNexus said the document on engagement of business should recognize the negative impacts of business on biodiversity.
On Thursday, delegates considered a draft WGRI recommendation on engagement of business (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/CRP.1) and agreed to most of the preambular paragraphs with minor changes.
On Friday, delegates continued discussion on the CRP. In the morning, Guatemala expressed concern that its previous comments on the rights of indigenous peoples had not been included in the document. On preambular text on voluntary standards and certification bodies, Ethiopia, supported by Argentina, Zambia, Ghana and Brazil, proposed deleting “invaluable.” Delegates agreed to this change.
On linkages between biodiversity and environmental sustainability, Ethiopia, supported by Uganda and others, called for a reference to the Convention and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. Canada proposed noting the responsibility of business “to take action on” climate change and desertification, rather than “respect.” Brazil preferred, and delegates agreed, to refer to “sustainable development” rather than “environmental sustainability.” On calling upon businesses and other groups to formulate actions for biodiversity conservation, Burkina Faso proposed deleting reference to the Nagoya Protocol. The paragraph remained bracketed. Ghana proposed new text further calling upon businesses to endorse the revised 2012 IFC Performance Standards. Argentina favored “consider” instead of “endorse.” The text was bracketed.
In the afternoon, delegates adopted the recommendation with several amendments and minor text left in brackets. On noting that the engagement with business must assume the three objectives of the Convention, Uganda, supported by Ukraine, proposed replacing “assume” with “taking into account” or “take responsibility for.” Both words were left in brackets. Delegates then agreed to delete the brackets around the reference to the revised 2012 IFC Performance Standards.
On policies that halt biodiversity loss in government procurement policies, Zambia proposed considering policies to reduce incentives, including subsidies, in government procurement policies that are harmful to biodiversity. Ethiopia suggested adding reference to policies “and national legislation.” The amendment was accepted. Delegates then agreed to delete reference, as suggested by Zambia, to “biodiversity-friendly” policies and to the Nagoya Protocol.
Final Recommendation: In its recommendation (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/L.8), WGRI recommends that the COP, inter alia:
• call upon businesses to continue liaising with national governments, civil society organizations, academia, and other stakeholders, to formulate relevant actions for biodiversity conservation, for sustainable use of ecosystem services and for the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources, which align with the Strategic Plan and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets;
• call upon businesses to fully consider the revised 2012 IFC Performance Standards; and
• consider, according to priorities and national circumstances, policies and legislation to reduce incentives, including subsidies harmful to biodiversity in government procurement policies.
WGRI further invites parties to, inter alia, promote the full integration of biodiversity and ecosystem services value into private sector activities, taking into account the findings and recommendations of the TEEB for Business Report and the work undertaken in the framework of national ecosystem assessments.
MULTI-YEAR PLAN OF ACTION FOR SOUTH-SOUTH COOPERATION ON BIODIVERSITY FOR DEVELOPMENT
Delegates first considered the Multi-Year Plan of Action for South-South Cooperation (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/10) on Tuesday, discussed a CRP on Thursday and considered revised text on Friday in plenary and at a lunchtime Friends of the Chair group.
Republic of Korea underscored the findings of the Third Expert Meeting on South-South Cooperation. Jordan said that South-South and triangular cooperation is crucial for linking the sustainable use of biodiversity with poverty reduction and economic and social development, and called on funders to provide material support for the Steering Committee on South-South Cooperation. The EU supported South-South cooperation for achieving the Strategic Plan and cross-thematic work of the Convention but said that a Multi-Year Plan of Action is not ready for adoption at COP 11. Japan said that cooperation could be enhanced through voluntary activities.
Discussion focused on language on the establishment of a trust fund for the implementation of the Strategic Plan and the Multi-Year Plan of Action. Argentina and Norway then proposed compromise text that welcomes criteria development and invites the GEF to consider establishing a South-South biodiversity cooperation trust fund, which the EU opposed because they wished to retain “reiterate.” This language remains bracketed in the final recommendation.
Final Recommendation: In the recommendation on the Multi-Year Plan of Action for South-South Cooperation (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/L.4), WGRI recommends that the COP, inter alia:
• welcome the outcomes of the Third Expert Meeting on South-South Cooperation;
• recognize that South-South cooperation, complemented and supported by North-South and triangular cooperation, are important contributions to the implementation of the Strategic Plan;
• encourage parties and others to implement the Multi-Year Plan of Action for South-South Cooperation in the context of nationally determined priorities, capacities, and needs;
• reiterate its invitation to the GEF to consider establishing a South-South biodiversity cooperation trust fund for the implementation of the Strategic Plan, including the Multi-Year Plan of Action for South-South Cooperation, based on voluntary contributions (this entire sub-paragraph remains bracketed); and
• request the Secretariat to promote South-South cooperation and triangular cooperation as part of a coherent, consistent and coordinated approach to technical and scientific cooperation and information exchange.
On Friday, the Rapporteur, Snežana Prokić (Serbia), introduced the draft report (UNEP/CBD/WGRI/4/L.1). The report was adopted with minor amendments.
Chair Hosino thanked delegates for their spirit of cooperation in achieving positive results over the course of the week. CBD Executive Secretary Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias lauded delegates’ success, noting that while COP 11 faces many challenges, the results and conclusions of WGRI 4 bodes well for COP 11’s success.
Ghana, for the African Group, stressed the importance of reviewing and revising NBSAPs for implementing the CBD, urging continuous support and catalytic action to aid Africa in achieving the 2014 deadline for the revision of NBSAPs. The EU stressed that the NBSAPs underpin implementation of the CBD at the national level. Georgia, for the CIS, outlined the importance of a financial mechanism for achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, and said that additional sources will be needed to effectively implement the Strategic Plan. Samoa, for SIDS, urged Rio+20 to address and discuss biodiversity to its fullest. The IIFB called for more involvement of indigenous peoples implementing the CBD in the future. Chair Hosino closed the meeting at 6:07 pm.
A BRIEF ANALYSIS OF WGRI 4
THE FOCUS ON IMPLEMENTATION
The fourth meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group on Review of Implementation of the Convention (WGRI 4) produced eight outcomes, including recommendations advancing the work on Biodiversity for Poverty Eradication and Development, Cooperation with Other Conventions, and producing the CBD’s message to Rio+20. Other recommendations tied into financing the Convention’s work made less headway.
Awareness of the rapidly approaching 2020 deadline for achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, as set out in the Strategic Plan, has increased attention to implementation. Both of this spring’s intersessional CBD meetings—the sixteenth meeting of the CBD’s Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA 16) as well as WGRI 4—have recognized implementation is paramount to achieving the 2020 deadline. At WGRI 4, review of implementation of the Strategy on Resource Mobilization was a centerpiece of discussion. However, debates on this and related issues were unusually tame, even “peaceful,” according to some participants. The mild tone called into question the purpose and efficacy of WGRI 4 in the CBD process.
This analysis discusses the outcomes of WGRI 4, focusing on resource mobilization and the emergence of “innovative finance,” and will consider how these outcomes may influence implementation in the lead-up to eleventh Conference of the Parties to the CBD (COP 11) in October 2012.
THE WGRI 4 HOLDING PATTERN
Now that the Aichi Biodiversity Targets have set global conservation priorities, discussions on the means to achieve the Targets can, and indeed may need to, bear more weight. The CBD COP 10 decision on implementation of the Strategy for Resource Mobilization (Decision X/3) provided the foundation for taking first steps in this direction. This Strategy was intended to assure developing countries that funds would be “mobilized” for national level assessments and action plans as called for in the Strategic Plan. WGRI 4 was expected to review the implementation of the Strategy and address issues related to enhancing financial flows with a view to making progress on implementation. Given the circumstances, the content of discussion at WGRI 4 seemed to have the potential to be both urgent and contentious. But, to some participants’ surprise, the WGRI 4 negotiations were not only “strangely quiet” but were even somewhat “lethargic” at times.
Hearty whittling, watering down and deferring of text to COP 11 characterized much of the negotiation on financial topics, even those that underpin the expected COP 11 decisions on funding targets. On the reporting framework—a dynamic database of country-level biodiversity and biodiversity funding data—agreement proved elusive on whether the COP should “take note of,” “welcome,” or “adopt” a “preliminary” framework, although parties were invited to build upon it. Other brackets were retained, after little or only brief discussion, on such matters as a funding baseline and whether to “continue to” allocate or to “allocate additional” funds for the reporting process.
Soft language was also used on the issue of South-South cooperation, despite initial speculation that the issue would be a stumbling block. Developed countries are eager to welcome this option as a new funding stream, although some economically robust developing countries oppose it. At WGRI 4, the initial draft recommendation called for COP 11 to adopt a Multi-Year Plan of Action, invite contributions and urge donor support for the implementation of the Plan, and request the GEF to consider establishing a South-South trust fund. However, as adopted, the recommendation only calls for COP 11 to recognize the potential of such a trust fund, encourage parties and others to implement the Plan of Action and request the Executive Secretary to promote the concept. Delegates also seemed strangely apathetic about a recommendation that the COP urge developed countries to provide “adequate means” and to make “effective commitments” for implementation. The text was bracketed and sent to COP 11.
Despite references to the “good spirit” throughout the week, tempered debates at WGRI 4 appeared to be less about consensus and more about avoiding or deferring difficult issues. Positions on funding—i.e., developing countries needing funds and developed countries hesitancy to provide them—are deeply entrenched. Perhaps delegates, as one insider conjectured, did not want to spend too much energy on contentious issues that could get undone at COP 11. Delegations are also expected to send in their top negotiators to Hyderabad; thus, some parties may have preferred just leaving WGRI 4 with bracketed text than trying to battle it out. Others said “delegates were simply not ready” for the conversations WGRI 4 hosted, hinting at a sense of resignation that big issues, like “continued” vs. “additional” funding were not going to be resolved this week.
Moreover, this stage of implementation decision-making awaits important national-level data-gathering. COP 10 called on COP 11 to decide on funding targets “if” a “robust baseline” and “effective reporting framework” is established. However, an initial paragraph of WGRI 4’s recommendation to the COP on implementing the Strategic Plan “takes into account the challenges” in setting targets, while Executive Secretary Dias welcomed delegates with an acknowledgment that mobilizing resources is “complex.” These complexities cause real and practical holdups in the Secretariat’s 2015 deadline for aggregating indicators based on national-level input and consolidating them into a framework for measuring progress on conservation. According to one seasoned delegate, this work “creates an entire industry.” Another delegate agreed, stating that his country has begun this work and it is “very heavy lifting.” Thus, until robust data can define an “effective reporting framework,” as was called for at COP 10, parties will make slow progress on targets. At this stage, as a contact group chair reported, further negotiations on review of implementation may simply be “premature.” While the developing country claim that funds are needed may sound very familiar, the call for funds must now be answered in some way, or data delays will hold up implementation measures already agreed. One insider suggested that key developed country parties came to WGRI 4 without a clear mandate on implementation. However, continued lack of a mandate would leave the Convention in poor stead if maintained at COP 11.
Translating old funding arguments into new outcomes will be a key issue for COP 11 to address. Given that parties are now responsible for implementing the Strategic Plan, difficult discussions are on the horizon. Perhaps the lethargy, and what some participants perceived as “meager” outcomes, of WGRI 4 reflect a holding pattern for the politics and substance of the CBD. On the other hand, such outcomes may merely reflect a transitional phase as the CBD finally sets in motion its Strategic Plan.
CREATIVE FINANCING AND NEW PARADIGMS FOR BIODIVERSITY
Now that the task of implementation has finally come into stark focus, delegates are embarking on a number of ways to finance the work needed to achieve the Strategic Plan. The need for “cold hard cash,” coupled with slow allocation of Global Environment Facility (GEF) funding and reduced developed country contributions due to the financial crisis, makes alternative, or “innovative,” sources of funding much more important. While many delegates made reference to the need to use all resources possible, others reiterated that South-South cooperation is supplementary and innovative financial mechanisms are secondary to the GEF.
The lack of debate on mobilizing resources from innovative financial mechanisms, which includes payments for ecosystem services, a topic long taboo to parties and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) who are worried about the “marketization of nature,” was also “unexpected and uncharacteristic,” in the words of one delegate. The usual voice against monetary valuation was not even at the meeting, and other parties who had expressed concerns at previous CBD meetings did not elect to speak. After a fairly brief debate, the contact group agreed to invite parties to implement concrete actions and initiatives, including the innovative mechanisms, and to also request the Secretariat to organize workshops “exploring relevant financing mechanisms” and to compile information already requested on the topic for review at COP 11.
The work done outside formal CBD meetings is also telling. Some parties noted the work done behind the scenes on this issue, including at the Quito dialogue seminar on Scaling-Up Biodiversity Finance, the 12 May 2012 workshop on innovative financial mechanisms and other regional and subregional workshops sharing knowledge and perspectives on The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity study (TEEB) for uptake in national biodiversity funding strategies and business practices. This suite of initiatives makes clear that innovative funding is being integrated at multiple levels from the bottom up—implying that a new paradigm for biodiversity conservation is perhaps starting to be put in motion.
Valuation is a complicated undertaking, however, and there are many reasons to be cautious over its adoption. COP 11 will need to reassess and further direct its uptake, and as one party said, “it will not escape the need to have something” on guiding principles and safeguards. However, the Strategic Plan will likely need to rely on new and innovative financing to achieve some of its targets in light of the continued difficult economic situations of many traditional donor parties. COP 11 will need to continue to prioritize such creative options and will likely revisit the issue in review of country-specific resource mobilization strategies.
LOOKING AHEAD TO HYDERABAD AND RIO
Looking ahead to Hyderabad, and based on the lackluster, “visionless” discussions at WGRI 4, delegates are left wondering how resource mobilization discussions have been positioned for COP 11. Although incremental progress will be possible on aspects of resource mobilization, the initial outcomes on the “preliminary” reporting framework for monitoring progress, with bracketed baselines, may not set COP 11 up to make its expected decisions on funding targets. Old funding debates are also sure to receive heightened pressure as well, since gaps in financial flows will delay further work on data-gathering.
The Rio+20 conference takes place well before COP 11, however, in little more than one month. Can it have a positive effect on addressing these challenges? The CBD’s message to Rio+20, written as a call from 193 parties, urges world leaders to ensure that biodiversity considerations are integrated into future decision-making and punctuates the need for adequate and timely financial resources to be mobilized. Time will tell if it packs the “punch” to bring biodiversity onto an already busy stage.
Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group Meeting on the Second Assessment and Review of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety: The Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group Meeting on the Second Assessment and Review of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety will take place in May. dates: 14-16 May 2012 location: Vienna, Austria contact: CBD Secretariat phone: +1-514-288-2220 fax: +1-514-288-6588 email:firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.cbd.int/doc/?meeting=BSAR-01
AEWA MOP 5: The fifth session of the Meeting of the (MOP 5) to African-Eurasian Waterbird Agreement (AEWA) is organized by the UNEP/AEWA Secretariat. dates: 14-18 May 2012 location: La Rochelle, France contact: UNEP/AEWA Secretariat phone: +49-228-815-24143 fax: +49-228-815-2450 email: email@example.com www: http://www.unep-aewa.org/meetings/en/mop/mop5_docs/mop5.htm
CBD Subregional Workshop on Valuation and Incentive Measures for South America: Organized by the CBD Secretariat, the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) through its Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean and its Coordinating Office on The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB), this workshop aims to support countries in making use of the findings of the TEEB study, as well as similar work at national or regional levels. dates: 15-17 May 2012 location: Santiago, Chile contact: CBD Secretariat phone: +1-514-288-2220 fax: +1-514-288-6588 email: firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.cbd.int/doc/?meeting=RWIM-SA-01
CBD Regional Workshop on Valuation and Incentive Measures for Eastern Europe and Central Asia: Organized by the CBD Secretariat, UNEP through its Coordinating Office on TEEB, and IUCN, this workshop seeks to: provide decision makers in Eastern Europe and Central Asia with economic arguments for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity; promote synergies and enhanced cooperation among relevant policy areas and sectors by mainstreaming biodiversity and ecosystem services; and support the revision and review of national biodiversity strategies and action plans in light of the new Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020. dates: 29-31 May 2012 location: Tbilisi, Georgia contact: CBD Secretariat phone: +1-514-288-2220 fax: +1-514-288-6588 email: email@example.com www: http://www.cbd.int/doc/?meeting=RWIM-EECASI-01
Third Round of Informal-Informal Negotiations on the Zero Draft of the Outcome Document: This round of informal informal negotiations was announced on 4 May to continue to negotiate the draft outcome document for Rio+20. dates: 29 May - 2 June 2012 location: UN Headquarters, New York contact: UNCSD Secretariat email: firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.uncsd2012.org/
GEF 42nd Council Meeting: The Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council will meet in June to develop, adopt, and evaluate GEF programmes. Council members meet for three days, twice each year. dates: 4-7 June 2012 location: Washington, DC, US contact: GEF Secretariat phone: +1-202-473-0508 fax: +1-202-522-3240 email:email@example.com www: http://www.thegef.org/gef/node/4578
African Regional Indigenous and Local Community Preparatory Meeting for CBD COP 11: This regional workshop aims to increase the number of indigenous and local community (ILC) representatives, with an emphasis on women, effectively involved in the CBD processes, as well as to build their capacity to do so. The workshop will focus on Articles 8(j) (traditional knowledge), 10(c)(customary sustainable use), and related provisions, as well as the Nagoya Protocol on access and benefit-sharing, and aims at preparing ILC representatives for CBD COP 11. dates: 12-15 June 2012 location: Bujumbura, Burundi contact: CBD Secretariat phone: +1-514-288-2220 fax: +1-514-288-6588 email:firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.cbd.int/doc/?meeting=8J-PREPCOP11COP 11-01
Third PrepCom for UNCSD: This meeting will take place in Brazil prior to the UNCSD. dates: 13-15 June 2012 location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil contact: UNCSD Secretariat email:email@example.com www: http://www.uncsd2012.org/
Rio Conventions Pavilion at Rio+20: This event is a collaborative outreach activity of the Secretariats of the Rio Conventions (UNFCCC, UNCCD and CBD), the GEF, and 25 other international, national and local partners. It aims to promote and strengthen synergies between the Rio Conventions at implementation levels by providing a coordinated platform for awareness-raising and information-sharing about the linkages in science, policy and practice between biodiversity, climate change and combating desertification/land degradation. dates: 13-22 June 2012 location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil contact: Rio Conventions Pavilion phone: +1-514-288-6588 fax: +1-514-288-6588 email: firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.riopavilion.org/
ICLEI - 2012 World Congress: This triennial congress will address themes including: green urban economy; changing citizens, changing cities; greening events; and food security and how biodiversity protection can be integrated into municipal planning and decision-making. dates: 14-17 June 2012 location: Belo Horizonte, Brazil contact: ICLEI World Secretariat phone: +49 228 97 62 9900 fax: +49 228 97 62 9901 email:email@example.com www: http://worldcongress2012.iclei.org
UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20): The UNCSD will mark the 20th anniversary of the UN Conference on Environment and Development (Earth Summit), which convened in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1992. dates: 20-22 June 2012 location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil contact: UNCSD Secretariat email:firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.uncsd2012.org/
Global Biodiversity Informatics Conference 2012: The Global Biodiversity Informatics Conference (GBIC) aims to discuss how informatics can best meet the challenges posed by biodiversity science and policy. It will focus on the practical steps needed to provide the information needs of global commitments such as the Aichi 2020 targets to halt biodiversity loss. Attendance at GBIC is by invitation only. dates: 2-4 July 2012 location: Copenhagen, Denmark contact: Conference organizers email:email@example.com www: www.gbic2012.org
ICNP-2: The second meeting of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and Equitable Sharing of Benefits arising from their Utilization (ABS) will consider guidance to the financial mechanisms and on resource mobilization, and the need for, and modalities of, a global multilateral benefit-sharing mechanism. dates: 2-6 July 2012 location: New Delhi, India contact: CBD Secretariat phone: +1-514-288-2220 fax: +1-514-288-6588 email:firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.cbd.int/icnp2/
Ramsar COP 11: The 11th meeting of the contracting parties (COP 11) to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Importance especially as Waterfowl Habitat will be preceded by the 44th meeting of Standing Committee planned for 4 July 2012. The broad theme for World Wetlands Day 2012 and COP 11 is “Wetlands, Tourism and Recreation.” dates: 6-13 July 2012 location: Bucharest, Romania contact: Ramsar Secretariat phone: +41-22-999-0170 fax: +41-22-999-0169 email:email@example.com www: http://www.ramsar.org
62nd Meeting of the CITES Standing Committee: The CITES Standing Committee provides policy guidance to the Secretariat concerning the implementation of the Convention and oversees the management of the Secretariat’s budget; coordinates and oversees, where required, the work of other committees and working groups; carries out tasks given to it by the Conference of the Parties; and drafts resolutions for consideration by the Conference of the Parties. dates: 23-27 July 2012 location: Geneva, Switzerland phone: +41-22-917-81-39/40 fax: +41-22-797-34-17 email:firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.cites.org/eng/com/sc/index.php
Southern Indian Ocean Regional Workshop to Facilitate the Description of Ecologically or Biologically Significant Marine Areas (EBSAs): This workshop aims to facilitate the description of EBSAs through the application of scientific criteria adopted at CBD COP 9 as well as other relevant compatible and complementary nationally and intergovernmentally-agreed scientific criteria, as well as the scientific guidance on the identification of marine areas beyond national jurisdiction. dates: 30 July - 3 August 2012 location: Mauritius contact: CBD Secretariat phone: +1-514-288-2220 fax: +1-514-288-6588 email:email@example.com www: http://www.cbd.int/meetings/
IUCN World Conservation Congress 2012: The Congress theme will be Nature+, a slogan that captures the fundamental importance of nature and its inherent link to every aspect of people’s lives, including: nature+climate, nature+livelihoods, nature+energy and nature+economics. dates: 6-15 September 2012 location: Jeju, Republic of Korea contact: IUCN Congress Secretariat phone: +41-22-999 0336 fax: +41-22-999-0002 email:firstname.lastname@example.org www: http://www.iucnworldconservationcongress.org/
CBD COP 11: The agenda for the next meeting of the CBD COP includes consideration of, inter alia: the status of the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits arising from their Utilization; implementation of the Strategic Plan 2011-2020 and progress towards the Biodiversity Targets; issues related to financial resources and the financial mechanism; and biodiversity and climate change. This meeting will be preceded by the sixth meeting of the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety. dates: 8-19 October 2012 location: Hyderabad, India contact: CBD Secretariat phone: +1-514-288-2220 fax: +1-514-288-6588 email:email@example.com www: http://www.cbd.int/doc/?meeting=COP-11
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