Over the past two weeks, IISD RS has been busy keeping up with the news and events related to a number of sustainable development policy themes.
With the launch of the International Year of Biodiversity and preparations for the 10th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity in October, as well as the 15th meeting of the COP to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora in March, a number of related meetings have taken place or are in progress (see our section on Biodiversity news in this issue of Linkages Update).
Biodiversity and ecosystems will also be discussed at the 11th Special Session of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Governing Council/ Global Ministerial Environment Forum (GCSS-11/GMEF), which will meet later this month. Additional agenda items for the GCSS-11/GMEF include the green economy and international environmental governance. Although this Forum will focus on UNEP’s role in relation to the agenda items, the discussions could help set the stage for the first PrepCom for the UN Conference on Sustainable Development in Brazil in 2012 (Rio+20), which will convene following the 18th session of the Commission on Sustainable Development in May. UN Regional Groups are announcing their nominations for the Rio+20 Bureau this month, further contributing early markers to the direction that event might take.
As for the climate change area, climate policy watchers are reviewing initial assessments of the impact of Copenhagen Accord commitments, announced following the 31 January 2010 deadline. The way forward and the short-term climate agenda is less clear, as developments are still unfolding relating to the request for views, by 16 February 2010, on the need for additional meeting time of the Ad Hoc
Working Groups in 2010, and for submissions on how best to advance the work in 2010. We will continue to bring you news and updates on these events as 2010’s sustainable development agenda gets busier and new decisions are negotiated.