Conservation International Statement on the 11th Petersberg Climate Dialogue Commitments

April 30, 2020

Brussels, Belgium (April 30, 2020) – Conservation International’s Vice President and Managing Director for Europe Herbert Lust today released the following statement on the commitments made by European governments at the 11th Petersberg Climate Dialogue to integrate climate action and forest conservation into the economic recovery response following the current COVID-19 pandemic.

The Dialogue was a key virtual gathering of 30+ climate ministers from the UNFCCC co-hosted by Germany and the UK.

“We know public and economic health are linked to the health of our planet. Not only will balanced ecosystems help prevent the future spread of disease, they will help prevent other global crises like climate change. Thus, it is urgent that we rethink our relationship with nature and invest in smart solutions as we navigate an uncertain economic future and recover from the current pandemic.

“It is very positive to see biodiversity prioritized alongside climate change at the top of the global agenda during the Petersberg conference. It is important to acknowledge the challenges we face in advancing these priorities in what we hoped would be a ‘super year for nature.’ A green recovery will not always be easy but challenging does not mean impossible. Together, we can chart a course that keeps nature at the forefront of the global economic recovery.

“We commend Chancellor Angela Merkel’s remarks highlighting the need to make progress on the protection of biodiversity and forests. There is immense opportunity to link future investments to the protection of our oceans, forests and sustainable development. Along the lines of the Paris agreement, European governments must look to include nature-based solutions – the protection, restoration and improved management of land -  in their COVID-19 stimulus responses. These commitments will help build the future resilience of our societies. We need to protect, restore and fund nature as part of any recovery.

“Conservation International looks forward to working with Germany and other leading governments in Europe to have a strong post-2020 biodiversity framework in place by next year.”

About Conservation International

Conservation International works to protect the critical benefits that nature provides to people. Through science, partnerships and fieldwork, Conservation International is driving innovation and investments in nature-based solutions to the climate crisis, supporting protections for critical habitats, and fostering economic development that is grounded in the conservation of nature.  We work in 30 countries around the world, empowering societies at all levels to create a cleaner, healthier and more sustainable planet. Follow Conservation International's work on Conservation NewsFacebookTwitter, Instagram and YouTube.