IUCN World Conservation Congress
‘There is no vaccine for a sick planet. The battle for the climate and against the deregulation of the climate is linked inextricably to preserving and restoring biodiversity’ ‘ President of France, Emmanuel Macron, IUCN Congress opening ceremony Marseille, 3-11 September 2021.
Protecting and restoring nature as part of a post-COVID pandemic roadmap was the urgent need called out by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) called out at its 2021 congress. With nearly 6,000 registered participants on site and more than 3,500 online participants, leaders from government, civil society, indigenous, faith and spiritual communities, the private sector, and academia, gathered to collectively decide on actions to address the world’s most pressing conservation and sustainable development challenges.
The congress concluded with some important announcements including:
- Agreeing to expand universal access to green spaces and to enhance urban biodiversity in 100 cities, representing around 100 million citizens by 2025
- Committing to support the ‘Great Blue Wall Initiative’, the first regionally connected network to develop a regenerative blue economy to the benefit of 70 million people, while conserving and restoring marine biodiversity
- France committing to achieve 30% of protected areas nationally by 2022, and 5% of its Mediterranean maritime area under strong protection by 2027.
The congress ended with a High-Level Dialogue on nature-based recovery to urge governments to ‘build back better’ and ensure ‘greater economic and environmental resilience for all’ by implementing a ‘nature-based recovery’ from the pandemic. This includes investing at least 10% of global recovery funds in nature, and adopting a series of resolutions and commitments to urgently address the interlinked climate and biodiversity crises.
Further information: https://www.iucncongress2020.org/
SO WHAT? At last business and governments are waking up to a biodiversity crisis that is at least as large as climate change. As we at www.theBEATS.org know ‘If you don’t have biodiversity, you don’t have a planet’. The wider community is demanding an urgent response and the World Economic Forum places biodiversity in the world’s top four risks (for both impact and likelihood) over the next 10 years.
NB: theBEATS.org @Guy Williams is involved with the IUCN Commission on Ecosystem Management, and the Species Survival Commission Primate Specialist Group. He took part in a number of the recent sessions relating to these roles and will also be joining the Convention on Biodiversity Diversity Conference of Parties (CBD COP) scheduled in Kunming in Yunnan Province in China. For more information on other IUCN events see here https://www.iucn.org/news/events.