Greenpeace Calls for Unity and Action as Delegates Arrive at Biodiversity Meeting in Geneva

Photo-illustration: Unsplash (Gouthaman Raveendran)

Greenpeace calls for action to increase land and sea protection to at least 30 per cent by 2030 with clear funding and implementation, and to recognize and strengthen the rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities, as delegates gather at a pre-meeting for this year’s Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) COP15 to be held in Kunming, China.

This is the first CBD meeting since the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report that highlighted biodiversity’s key role in response to climate change. At the same time, governments are now negotiating a new Global Ocean Treaty in New York. Together, these meetings are critical opportunities to halt global biodiversity loss.

“Biodiversity is at the core of our planet’s resilience to climate change. The latest IPCC report highlights that clearly. CBD COP15 urgently needs to take bold action to protect our ecosystems. We know healthy ecosystems sustain all life on Earth. We know policies will fail if they don’t put Indigenous Peoples and local communities at the centre of decision making. We know that our best bet is protecting at least 30 per cent of the land and at least 30 per cent of the ocean globally by 2030,” said Greenpeace International senior biodiversity campaign strategist An Lambrechts.

“Geneva will be the first face-to-face meeting since the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the CBD process. It will also be the last meeting ahead of COP15 in Kunming. The meeting carries a daunting and critical task of paving the ground for final negotiations. Countries should not only advance ambitious targets but also speed up the discussion on implementation and finance. Over the last two years, the world has been anxiously expecting a deal that will reverse the rampant destruction of biodiversity. The Geneva meeting has to demonstrate that this waiting is still worthwhile”, said Greenpeace East Asia senior policy advisor Li Shuo.

Photo-illustration: Pixabay

On February 28, the IPCC released its latest report, which highlighted the central role that global biodiversity protections need to play in our future, if we take immediate steps to protect biodiversity. The CBD COP15 is the chance to do that. The 30×30 (“thirty-by-thirty”) target to protect 30 per cent of the land and 30 per cent of the ocean by 2030 is scientifically rooted in ecosystems’ ability to bounce back if given the chance. And as the rightful stewards of the land, Indigenous Peoples and local communities need to be central in policy, implementation, and funding.

Last year, the Kunming Biodiversity Fund was established by China with an initial pledge of USD 230 million, presenting an initial step to finance biodiversity protection. This puts finance on the table, but thus far wealthy, donor countries have been quiet about their commitments to finance biodiversity protection. In many cases, wealthy donor countries have profited wildly from the destruction of ecosystems around the world. Now, with biodiversity in a more precarious state than ever, they must start to put their money where their mouths are and start financing biodiversity protection.

Source: Greenpeace