Conservation International Europe currently focuses its policy efforts in the following areas:
EU positions on climate change / REDD+
Climate change is one of the greatest environmental issues of our time. Through nature-based approaches and innovative tools, Conservation International is demonstrating the important role that ecosystems can play in mitigating and adapting to climate change impacts (Learn more on CI Global Climate Change engagement)
CI Europe is working at EU level to promote sustainable adaptation and mitigation climate policies, with a specific attention to new mechanisms linking ecosystem conservation and climate change, such as REDD+ (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation).
CI Europe is also creating REDD+ case studies based on CI’s field experience, which will be a tool to share lessons from the ground and illustrate CI’s positions at EU level and in international negotiations.
EU Budget & development funds
CI Europe is strongly engaged in EU budget discussions, together with the other NGOs that form the Coalition for Sustainable EU Funds (CI Europe, WWF, BirdLife Europe, Friends of the Earth Europe, CEE Bankwatch Network, European Environmental Bureau and Transport & Environment).
The purpose of this coalition is to set out and promote clear recommendations for the next EU Budget (2014-2020) in order to catalyze the transition towards healthy sustainable, that guarantee the well-being of citizens, within the ecological limits of the planet. In November 2010, the coalition published the report “Changing Perspectives – How the EU budget can shape a sustainable future”. The coalition will also play a key role in ensuring the proper implementation of commitments.
CI Europe is coordinating the coalition together with its partner, BirdLife Europe. CI Europe is giving special attention to the external dimension of EU policies and financial instruments: consideration for ecosystems in EU ODA, dedicated funding for global biodiversity and fast start climate finance, specific needs of EU overseas territories, etc. The EU as a whole is the world’s largest donor of ODA (57% of total): influencing this funding is crucial to achieve healthy sustainable economies.
Failure to recognize nature as a strategic asset within development leads to increased poverty, pressures on the food security, and increased vulnerability to climate change. Investing in ecosystems may not be as spectacular as building infrastructures, but it is often exactly what local population need.
EU overseas territories
With six EU member states having overseas territories, the EU has 9 Outermost Regions (ORs) and 23 Overseas Countries or Territories (OCTs) scattered around the globe. Most of them are tropical islands; a few are territories located in polar and sub-polar regions, and one is part of the Amazon.
This network of 32 entities is of crucial global ecological importance. New Caledonia alone has more endemic species than the entire European continent. The total marine area attached to these territories gives the EU by far the first Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) in the world, ahead of the US, and this marine area contains 7,5% of the world’s coral reefs. The ecological importance of these territories, which has been severely overlooked in the past, has gained a momentum in the 2008 Reunion Conference organized by the French EU presidency and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Since then, the European Commission has started to give more attention to the subject and CI Europe strongly supports this dynamic.
CI Europe is working in cooperation with IUCN, the EU institutions, the Overseas Countries and Territories Association (OCTA), CI New Caledonia, and all interested NGOs and organizations. The objective is to feed the discussions on future policy instruments dedicated to ecosystems in these entities, including the future EU scheme known as BEST (Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in Territories).
LEARN MORE: IUCN EU Outermost Regions and Overseas Countries and Territories Programme
ACP-EU relations: proposals for a renewed partnership towards a green, sustainable economy
ACP countries and the EU agree: we need to switch to a greener, more sustainable economic model, to ensure human well-being and preserve the natural capital we depend on. But how? Key is to recognize and support the economic value of nature.
LEARN MORE: CI Europe, WWF and Birdlife Europe position paper