On the CBD’s Proposed Mission, Strategic Goals and Targets for the Post 2010
Delivered by Muhtari Aminu-Kano, BirdLife International
Dear Parties to the CBD,
The 3rd Global Biodiversity Outlook report clearly shows that despite
progress in some areas, the Parties to the CBD have failed to achieve the 2010
Biodiversity continues to be lost at an alarming rate, ecosystem functions
and services are being severely diminished and neither the benefits of natural
resources nor the costs of their loss are being shared equitably.
We have failed because we have not addressed the underlying causes of
biodiversity loss. Current economic and governance systems and policies promote
the over consumption of natural resources by some countries and segments of
society. This is driving the destruction of habitats and undermining the rights
and livelihoods of millions of people who depend on them.
The capacity of the planet to support an increasing human population at high
levels of production and consumption is finite. The sustainability of life on
earth is being severely undermined.
We are at a turning point. Fundamental change is urgently required. Society
needs a new vision that links socio-economic and environmental policy.
The good news is, we can still do it. We can learn from existing successes
and develop intelligent and equitable approaches for the future.
The Parties to the CBD are now challenged to lead the way.
However, environmental sector cannot do it alone. All other relevant sectors
responsible for issues such as finance, trade, climate change and energy,
disaster reduction, health, agriculture, forestry, fisheries need to act at both
national and international level.
These sectors have much to gain: biodiversity and functioning ecosystems
provide a range of services that support their goals and underpin the global
economy as a whole.
It is in their national interest for governments to recognise the value and
benefits of biodiversity for relevant sectors, as well as the cost they will
bear from its loss.
While there are some examples where sectors have integrated biodiversity into
their portfolios, political leadership is required to ensure integration at a
much broader scale.
Governments must act at the highest level. Heads of state must commit to
mobilize resources and action by all relevant sectors.
The current draft of the CBD Strategic Plan does not fully address this
While we welcome the work of the CBD Secretariat, the proposed overall
mission is not ambitious enough – biodiversity loss must be halted by 2020.
Achieving many of the proposed targets would make a positive contribution to
halting biodiversity loss but they need to be reformulated significantly in
order to address the scale of the challenge we face.
We therefore recommend:
- Reformulation of the Mission as follows:
“By 2020, biodiversity loss is
halted, ecosystems are restored and the values and benefits of biodiversity and
ecosystems are shared equitably and fully integrated into all aspects of
development. And all Parties have the means to do so”
- Reformulation of the targets to ensure the following issues are adequately
- The engagement of government at the highest level to integrate biodiversity
into relevant portfolios through the establishment of cross-sectoral cabinet
committees led by heads of state.
- The identification of concrete steps, mechanisms and timelines to integrate
biodiversity processes, benefits and values into economic policy design and
national accounting for the health and benefit of society as a whole, giving
full consideration for governance and the social and cultural dimensions of
- The urgent prevention of habitat loss across all ecosystem types through
effective spatial planning, management, sustainable use and good governance with
the full respect for the rights of indigenous peoples and local
- The integration of CBD objectives into relevant multi-lateral agreements. In
particular decisions under the UNFCCC on climate change mitigation and
adaptation should include ecosystem-based approaches that: maintain and/or
enhance biodiversity; contribute to livelihoods; recognize and respect the
rights of indigenous peoples and local communities; and mobilize adequate
resources in an equitable and transparent manner.
We urge CBD Parties to announce national commitments to advance these four
issues before CBD COP 10 in Nagoya.
We are at a crossroads. As the Global Biodiversity Outlook warned, without
“swift, radical and creative action” we will fast-track destruction of life on
earth. Our organisations urge you to use this opportunity to take concrete
actions that will make the above a reality. We look forward to working together
during what will surely be the UN Decade of Biodiversity to ensure that we put
the planet back on a truly sustainable path.
- Birdlife International
- BGCI -- Botanic Gardens Conservation International
- Conservation International
- Forest People’s Programme
- Fundación Vida Silvestre Argentina
- Global Forest Coalition
- Global Invasive Species Programme
- Japan Civil Network for Convention on Biological Diversity (approximately 80
- Plantlife International
- The Gaia Foundation
- The Timberwatch Coalition, South Africa
- VAS – Green Environment Society (federation of 50 organisations in
- Wetlands International