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A Special Report on Selected Side Events at the
CBD COP 9

19-30 May 2008 | Bonn, Germany

 

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Events on Tuesday, 27 May 2008

High-Level Panel Discussion on Biodiversity for Development and Poverty Allevation

Presented by the CBD

Tommy Esang Remengesau Jr, President of Palau, noted the future of all people and life on the planet will be defined by the ability to use natural resources sustainably. He emphasized that Palau would only succeed in preserving its biodiversity through community involvement and transparent processes. Karin Kortmann, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Germany, emphasized that effective implementation of the CBD is vital for global justice and poverty alleviation in the context of sustainable development.

Laurent Stefanini, Ambassador for the Environment, France, highlighted the need to maintain the profile of biodiversity on the international agenda and find synergies between the Rio conventions. Ahmed Djoghlaf, CBD, after signing the memorandum of understanding between the CBD and the UNDP, stressed that future work will include mainstreaming biodiversity into the development agenda.

Veerle Vandeweerd, UNDP, underscored the need for integration of biodiversity into the development and poverty alleviation agenda. Monique Barbut, Global Environment Facility, noted the need for local community involvement in projects that link the CBD with poverty alleviation. Batilda Burian, Minister of State for Environment, Tanzania, noted that poverty is a strong cause of unsustainable biodiversity use and that natural disasters further exacerbate this vicious circle.

Harison Randriarimanana, Minister of Environment, Water and Forest and Tourism, Madagascar, expressed concern for the high level of poverty in his country. He highlighted their medium term strategy that emphasizes biodiversity conservation, poverty reduction and rapid economic growth. Jean-Claude Bouyobart, Ambassador to Germany, Gabon, noted that the disappearance of Gabon’s forests will have dire effects on poverty levels. Stephen Groff, Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, outlined the dilemma of meeting job creation expectations while conserving biodiversity. He noted that a number of tools exist to achieve this, including strategic environmental assessments.

Bakary Kante, UNEP, underscored the limitations of defining poverty in monetary terms, and stated that lost biodiversity means lost capital for those relying on natural resources. Walter Kennes, European Commission (EC), emphasized the need for the topic of biodiversity to be present in all negotiations and discussions with beneficiary partners of EC funding. Juan Chavez Munoz, Interethnic Association for the Development of the Peruvian Amazon, highlighted the work that the Equator Initiative has undertaken and stressed the need for governments to respect the rights of local and indigenous people.

L-R: Monique Barbut, Global Environment Facility; Karin Kortmann, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Germany; Tommy Esang Remengesau Jr, President of Palau; Ahmed Djoghlaf, CBD; Veerle Vandeweerd, UNDP

Ahmed Djoghlaf, CBD, signed an MOU between CBD and UNDP which will ensure the mainstreaming of biodiversity into UNDP programmes. Karin Kortmann, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, Germany, underscored the need to overcome the vicious circle of poverty and biodiversity loss. Tommy Esang Remengesau Jr, President of Palau, noted the need to move aquaculture and agriculture into the mix of development strategies, and to focus on value-added products without harming biodiversity.

More information:

http://www.cbd.int

 
Contacts:

CBD Secretariat <info@cbd.int>

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A Celebration of Island Leadership: Voluntary Commitments to Conservation and Sustainable Livelihoods on Islands

Presented by the Global Island Partnership and The Nature Conservancy

Sigmar Gabriel, Minister of the Environment, Germany, opened the event with some welcoming remarks recognising the value of island conservation and leadership. Rolph Payet, senior advisor to the President, the Seychelles, spoke about the Sea Level Rise foundation. Tommy Remengesau, Jr, President, Palau, provided an update on the significant progress made on the Micronesia Challenge since it was launched at COP8. + Rolph Payet, senior advisor to the President, the Seychelles, spoke about the Sea Level Rise foundation.

Earl Deveaux, Minister of Public Works and Transport, the Bahamas, introduced the launch of the Caribbean Challenge, along with with Eleanor Phillips and Rebecca Patton, The Nature Conservancy. The Conservancy pledged $20 million in support of the challenge. Julia Marton-Lefèvre, Director General, IUCN announced that IUCN will house the new coordinating body for the Global Island Partnership.

More information:

http://www.cbd.int/island/glispa.shtml
http://www.nature.org

 
Contacts:

Sonja Mitchell <sonja_mitchell@tnc.org>

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Practical Tools to Help Implementation of ABS

Presented by the Ministry of International Relations, Quebec

Gerry Sklavounos, Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks, Quebec, emphasized the importance of protecting biodiversity and genetic resources, and described the inter-ministerial development of provincial and federal policies on access and benefit sharing (ABS). He provided an overview of resources that Quebec has developed, in partnership with the International Francophone Organization, the Francophone Institute for Energy and the Environment, and the Centre for International Law and Sustainable Development.

Michel Provencher, Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks, Quebec, elaborated on these resources, which consist of: a pamphlet and Powerpoint presentation that explains ABS; an overview document, and an implementation manual. He said that the ultimate goal is to improve access to information regarding ABS and to support national focal points, but noted that that these resources are not intended to define national ABS policy. He provided several examples of ABS, including a bacterium found in Yellowstone national park, and Hoodia gordinii, a South African cactus known for its appetite suppressing qualities. Provencher also described the major stages of ABS, including the identification of genetic resources and traditional knowledge, and the attainment of prior informed consent.

Participants discussed: the range of potential uses for the new ABS resources; the need to communicate ABS to a non-technical audience; and the need to conduct ABS outreach activities with indigenous communities.

Outils pratiques pour appuyer l'exécution de l’APA

Présenté par le Ministère des Relations internationales, Québec

Gerry Sklavounos, Ministère du développement durable, de l'environnement et des parcs, Québec, a souligné l'importance de protéger la biodiversité et les ressources génétiques, et a décrit le développement interministériel des politiques provinciales et fédérales sur l’accès aux ressources génétiques et le partage des avantages (APA). Il a décrit les outils développés par le Québec en association avec l'Organisation internationale de la Francophonie, l’Institut de l’énergie et de l’environnement de la Francophonie, et le Centre de droit international de développement durable.

Michel Provencher, Ministère du Développement durable, de l’Environnement et des parcs, Québec, a élaboré sur ces outils, incluant: un dépliant et une présentation Powerpoint expliquant l'APA; un document de vue d'ensemble, et un manuel de vulgarisation. Il a dit que l'objectif ultime est d'améliorer l'accès à l'information concernant l'APA et de soutenir les efforts des points focaux nationaux, en soulignant qu’ils ne ce sont pas conçus pour définir la politique nationale d'APA. Il a fourni plusieurs exemples de APA, y compris une bactérie trouvée dans le parc national de Yellowstone, et Hoodia gordinii, un cactus sud-africain connu pour sa capacité de supprimer la faim. Provencher a également décrit les étapes principales des APA, y compris l'identification des ressources génétiques et de la connaissance traditionnelle, et l'accomplissement du consentement au courant antérieur.

Les participants ont discuté : les usages potentiels pour ces nouvels outils d'APA; la nécessité de communiquer l'APA d’un façon simple; et la nécessité de communiquer avec les communautés indigenes au sujet de l’APA.

L-R: Anne Rhéaume, Ministry of International Relations, Quebec; Michel Provencher and Gerry Sklavounos, Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks, Quebec

Michel Provencher, Quebec, emphasized the need for an international mechanism on ABS, and described related resource materials that Quebec has made available Gerry Sklavounos, Ministry of Sustainable Development, Environment and Parks, Quebec, encouraged delegates to use newly available resources in implementing ABS. Anne Rhéaume, Ministry of International Relations, Quebec, moderated the panel on resources for ABS implementation.

More information:

http://www.mri.gouv.qc.ca/en/

 
Contacts:
Anne Rhéaume <anne.rheaume@mri.gouv.qc.ca>
Gerry Sklavounos <gsklavounos-lado@assnat.qc.ca>
Michel Provencher <michel.provencher@mddep.gouv.qc.ca>

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Making Informed Decisions About Biofuels

Presented by the OECD

Stephen Groff, Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, highlighting the escalating demand for energy, noted that strategic environmental assessments (SEAs) provide a tool for policy makers to make informed, rational decisions throughout a sector and take upstream and downstream effects into account.

Rob Verheem, Netherlands Commission for Environmental Assessment, stressed three key challenges for effective SEA application, including the lack of: focus on long-term economic and environmental impacts; capacity and funding for SEA implementation within communities; and understanding of what an SEA provides.

Ramani Sankaranarayanan, Community-based Technologies Exchange fostering Green Energy Partnerships, outlined a local project undertaken in Orissa, India, where oil seeds are collected to produce biodiesel for residential use. He underscored the benefits of the project, including environmental protection and increased economic welfare.

Alexander Porschke, Büro Porschke, outlined how SEAs can be used to engender trust and acceptance of projects implemented by politicians, as the process encourages dialogue at all levels within the community and political system.

Robert Bailey, OXFAM, noted that in a developing country context, biofuel projects are popular options for government to implement as they are seen to increase energy security and generate income.

Following the presentations from the panel, participants discussed: key criteria to take into consideration for SEAs; differences between an environmental impact assessment and SEAs; if SEAs can be used for the entire agricultural production process; the difference between biofuels and agrofuels; food security concerns; and monetization in SEAs.

L-R: Alexander Porschke, Büro Porschke; Rob Verheem, Netherlands Commission for Environmental Assessment; Stephen Groff, Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development; Ramani Sankaranarayanan, Community-based Technologies Exchange fostering Green Energy Partnerships; Fabian Busch, Denkmodell

Rob Verheem, Netherlands Commission for Environmental Assessment, outlined the main characteristics of SEAs. Alexander Porschke, Büro Porschke, highlighted how SEAs can engender trust and acceptance of politicians. Ramani Sankaranarayanan, Community-based Technologies Exchange fostering Green Energy Partnerships, noted how local biofuel projects can increase household welfare and improve local environmental conditions.

More information:

http://www.oecd.org
http://www.eia.nl

 
Contacts:

Stephen Groff <stephen.groff@oecd.org>
Rob Verheem <rverheem@eia.nl>
Ramani Sankaranarayanan <ctxgreen@gmail.com>
Alexander Porschke <alexander.porschke@hamburg.de>

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Implementation of the Regional Biodiversity Strategy of the Andean Community

Presented by the General Secretariat of the Andean Community

L-R: Mariela Canepa, Comunidad Andina; Rodrigo de la Cruz, Ecuadorian Intellectual Property Institute; and Cristian Espinoza, Andean Community

Cristian Espinosa, Andean Community, welcomed delegates to the meeting, which was convened to discuss progress on the implementation of the Regional Biodiversity Strategy (RBS) of the Andean Community in Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru.

Mariela Canepa, Andean Community, explained the legal basis of the RBS, whose aim is to promote sub-regional action for the conservation and sustainable use of natural resources. She described the major roles of the Secretariat, including consensus building among community members, and providing technical and financial project support.

Rodrigo de la Cruz, Ecuadorian Intellectual Property Institute, introduced the legal framework of norms relevant to traditional knowledge (TK) protection in the Andean Community, focusing on elements for the sui generis protection of TK from the indigenous perspective. He described the experience of developing a common proposal for the protection of TK though the establishment of an indigenous expert group with indigenous representatives from all Andean countries.

Alfredo Menacho, Peruvian Exporters Association, explained that BioTrade is a commercial model, which is based on social inclusion, environmental sustainability and economic viability.

Delegates applauded interventions from Marcela Aguiñaga, Minister of Environment, Ecuador; Juan Lozano Ramirez, Minister of Environment, Colombia; Manuel Ernesto Bernales Alvarado, President of the National Environmental Council, Peru; and Omar Rocha, Bolivia, who renewed their support for the activities of the Secretariat of the Andean Community.

Juan Lozano Ramirez, Minister of Environment, Colombia, acknowledged that environmental issues have become fundamental for the sustainable use of natural resource in the region and underscored the need to speak up and express a consistent programme on those issues. Rodrigo de la Cruz, Ecuadorian Intellectual Property Institute, stressed that the objective of protecting traditional knowledge is to encourage respect, prevent biopiracy and ensure the equitable sharing of benefits from such knowledge. Marcela Aguiñaga, Minister of Environment, Ecuador, stressed the need to establish an international compensation mechanism to redress environmental damage caused by other countries.

More information:

http://www.comunidadandina.org/


 
Contacts:
Mariela Canepa
<mcanepa@communidadandina.org>
Cristian Espinosa
<cespinosa@communidadandina.org>

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2008 Markov Award

Presented by CIC and the German Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection

Dieter Schramm, President of the International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation (CIC), thanked those responsible for implementing sustainable development principles of the Rio Conventions around the world.

Ursula Heinen, Parliamentary Secretary of State, Federal Ministry for Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection, noted that the concept of sustainability underlies the implementation of both the CBD and the Markov Award. She stressed that the aim of the Niassa Wildlife Corridor project is to protect nature for sustainable development and congratulated local populations, which are benefiting from activities such as sustainable hunting in the Tanzania-Mozambique region.

Sigurd Lehman-Tolkmitt, CIC, thanked Tanzania and Mozambique for their outstanding conservation efforts. He stressed that CIC feels strongly connected to conservation efforts in Tanzania and Mozambique and highlighted the importance of hunting principles that are guided by the sustainable use of natural resource, including the obligation for all hunters in Germany to strike a balance between conservation and hunting.

Robert Hepworth, Convention on Migratory Species, stressed that the Convention is synergic with CIC activities and highlighted that the knowledge of CIC has been fundamental to complement and support the implementation of the Convention. He noted that wrong policies and unsustainable hunting practices have driven many species to extinction and that the creation of strong incentives for local people is fundamental to conserve animal populations and to achieve CBD objectives.

He acknowledged that successful use and hunting practices can be a sustainable tool for rural development. He also noted that the key to success is international collaboration and stressed the need to establish trans-boundaries protected areas. As regards to the wildlife corridor, which connects reserves between Tanzania and Mozambique, he emphasised that the work done by the local people was fundamental for the success of the project. He concluded by arguing that this biodiversity corridor is not only important to preserve biodiversity in the two countries involved, but is also a corridor between Europe and Southern Africa.

Ana Paula Samo Gudo Chichava, Minister for the Coordination of Environmental Affairs, Mozambique, welcomed the Markov award as a recognition of her country’s efforts to meet international obligations, including the expansion of their protected areas to 15.5% of the land base.

Dieter Schramm then presented the CIC Markov Award for Outstanding Conservation performance to Gilberto Vincente, Mozambique, and David Ngalla, Tanzania, for their work in the establishment of the Niassa Wildlife Corridor and game reserve, and emphasized that peace underlies conservation. Ngalla highlighted that 4.2 million hectares had been protected, and invited the international scientific community to conduct research in the region.

 

The CIC Markov Award for Outstanding Conservation performance was presented to Gilberto Vincente, Mozambique, and David Ngalla, Tanzania, for their work in the establishment of the Niassa Wildlife Corridor.

Ursula Heinen, Parliamentary Secretary of State Federal Ministry for Food, congratulated the Niassa Wildlife Corridor project for achieving conservation of 42,000 square kilometres of valuable habitat. Robert Hepworth, Convention on Migratory Species, called on Tanzania and Mozambique to continue supporting trans-boundary conservation.

More information:

http://www.cic-wildlife.org

 
Contacts:
Kai Wollscheid <k.wollscheid@cic-wildlife.org>

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