Aichi biodiversity heads of agencies task force established with 27 global partners

9/21/2011

Conservation International’s President, Russell Mittermeier, represented the organization in the task force and signed the Memorandum of Cooperation

Montreal – At a signing ceremony organized by the Secretariat of the Convention onBiological Diversity (CBD), a Memorandum of Cooperation was signed with 27 of the largestinternational agencies, organizations and environmental conventions for implementation and achievementof the 2020 Aichi Biodiversity Targets. The signing ceremony took place at the margins of the high-levelevent on desertification of the sixty-sixth session of the United Nations General Assembly with theparticipation of Mr. Tatsushi Terada, Vice Minister for Global Environment Affairs, Ministry ofEnvironment, Japan, representing the President of the tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 10), held in Nagoya, Japan in October 2010. The memorandum creates a task force to provide a platform for agencies to coordinate their activities in support of the achievement of the Strategic Plan forBiodiversity 2011-2020 and its Aichi Biodiversity Targets.The Aichi Biodiversity Targets are a set of 20, time-bound, measureable targets agreed by the Parties tothe Convention on Biological Diversity in Nagoya, Japan in October 2010, that are now being translatedinto revised national strategies and action plans by the 193 Parties to the Convention. Achievement of thetargets, which were welcomed at the sixty-fifth session of the United Nations General Assembly, willcontribute to reducing, and eventually halting, the loss of biodiversity at a global level by the middle ofthe twenty-first century.“Achievement of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets requires the active engagement of all stakeholderswithout exception, as well as the global commitment of their partners,” said Mr. Ahmed Djoghlaf,Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity. “It is for that reason, we are glad that somany agencies and organizations have agreed to join forces and support the translation of the AichiTargets into a vibrant reality.”"I feel very encouraged by the spirit of cooperation provided by all the international organizations whichjoined here today for the achievement of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. As the COP 10 Presidency, Iwould like to thank you all on behalf of all the Parties," said Mr. Terada.In order to promote synergies and avoid duplication, the participants unanimously appointed the co-chairsof the seventeenth session of the Environment Management Group, Mr. Achim Steiner, ExecutiveDirector of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and Ms. Rebeca Grynspan, AssociateAdministrator of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The participants unanimouslyappointed Mrs. Monique Barbut, Chair and Chief Executive Officer of the Global Environment Facility(GEF), as the goodwill ambassador of the task force.“The Aichi Biodiversity Targets will provide a strategic orientation for countries as they seek to advancethe implementation of the convention and translate the Nagoya biodiversity compact into reality. The GEF stands ready to support countries as they embark on this effort over the next decade,” said MoniqueBarbut,.The commitment sets the stage for better coordination and communication between organizations as theysupport implementation of the Strategic Plan at global and national levels during the United NationsDecade on Biodiversity, which runs concurrently with the period of the Strategic Plan – 2011 to 2020.Signatories include: the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN),the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Environment Programme(UNEP), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the United NationsHuman Settlements Programme, Bioversity International, the Food and Agriculture Organization of theUnited Nations (FAO), the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO),the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the International Fund for AgriculturalDevelopment (IFAD),_the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO), the United Nations WorldTourism Organization (UNWTO) and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR)._Financing organizations include the GEF.Multilateral environmental agreements that have signed include the Convention on International Trade inEndangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, the Convention on Migratory Species, the InternationalTreaty on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture and the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands.Non-governmental organizations include the Alliance for Zero Extinction, BirdLife International,Conservation International, Rare, The Nature Conservancy, the World Association of Zoos andAquariums, WWF International, and the Wildlife Conservation Society.The first meeting of the task force will be held in October 2012 in Hyderabad, India, in conjunction withthe high-level segment of eleventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention onBiological Diversity, and will be preceded by a meeting of “sherpas” in early 2012.###Notes for editors:The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)Opened for signature at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, and entering into force inDecember 1993, the Convention on Biological Diversity is an international treaty for the conservation ofbiodiversity, the sustainable use of the components of biodiversity and the equitable sharing of thebenefits derived from the use of genetic resources. With 193 Parties, the Convention has near universalparticipation among countries. The Convention seeks to address all threats to biodiversity and ecosystemservices, including threats from climate change, through scientific assessments, the development of tools,incentives and processes, the transfer of technologies and good practices and the full and activeinvolvement of relevant stakeholders including indigenous and local communities, youth, NGOs, womenand the business community. The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety is a subsidiary agreement to theConvention. It seeks to protect biological diversity from the potential risks posed by living modifiedorganisms resulting from modern biotechnology. To date, 160 countries plus the European Union haveratified the Cartagena Protocol. The Secretariat of the Convention and its Cartagena Protocol is located inMontreal, Canada. For more information visit www.cbd.int For additional information, please contact: David Ainsworth on +1 514 287 7025 or atdavid.ainsworth@cbd.int ; or Johan Hedlund on +1 514 287 6670 or at johan.hedlund@cbd.int

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