Earth Negotiations Bulletin
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Volume 09 Number 645 - Monday, 20 October 2014
SUMMARY OF THE TWELFTH MEETING OF THE CONFERENCE OF THE PARTIES TO THE CONVENTION ON BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY AND THE FIRST MEETING OF THE PARTIES TO THE NAGOYA PROTOCOL ON ACCESS AND BENEFIT-SHARING
6-17 OCTOBER 2014

The twelfth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD COP 12) was held from 6-17 October 2014, in Pyeongchang, Republic of Korea. The first meeting of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization (NP COP/MOP 1) was held during the second week of CBD COP 12, from 13-17 October 2014. A High-Level Segment (HLS) was held from 15-17 October 2014, under the theme “Biodiversity for Sustainable Development.” Other parallel meetings included: the Communication, Education and Public Awareness (CEPA) Fair; the Rio Conventions Pavilion; and the Biodiversity Summit for Cities and Sub-national Governments.

Approximately 3,000 delegates attended the meetings, representing parties and other governments, UN agencies, intergovernmental, non-governmental, indigenous and local community organizations, academia and the private sector. CBD COP 12 adopted 33 decisions on a series of strategic, substantive, administrative and budgetary issues. Among other items, the meeting conducted a mid-term review of progress towards the goals of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and its Aichi targets; and reviewed progress in providing support towards implementation, through capacity building, technical and scientific cooperation, and other initiatives. Deliberations also focused on: resource mobilization and other finance-related matters; improving the efficiency of the Convention’s processes; biodiversity and sustainable development; cooperation with other organizations; marine and coastal biodiversity; biodiversity and climate change; biofuels; Article 8(j) (traditional knowledge); sustainable wildlife management; invasive alien species (IAS); synthetic biology; and ecosystem conservation and restoration.

Other highlights from COP 12 include: the launch of the fourth edition of the Global Biodiversity Outlook (GBO-4); deliberations on restructuring the Convention processes, including a decision on organization of concurrent meetings of the Convention and its Protocols; decisions on IAS; the HLS on “Biodiversity for Sustainable Development,” which culminated in the adoption of the Gangwon Declaration; and agreement on the Pyeongchang Roadmap, containing five decisions on: mid-term review of progress towards the goals of the 2011-2020 Strategic Plan for Biodiversity, and the Aichi targets; biodiversity and sustainable development; review of progress in providing support in implementing the objectives of the Convention; cooperation with other conventions; and a strategy for resource mobilization. 

NP COP/MOP 1 marked the entry into force of the Nagoya Protocol on 12 October 2014. The meeting considered the status of the ratification and implementation of the Protocol, and adopted 10 decisions, including, inter alia: the Access and Benefit-sharing (ABS) Clearing-house and information-sharing; monitoring and reporting; compliance; model contractual clauses and other voluntary instruments; capacity building; awareness-raising; the need for, and modalities of, a global multilateral benefit-sharing mechanism; and organizational, financial and budgetary matters.

Convening COP 12 and COP/MOP 1 concurrently proved less challenging than some had anticipated. As a result, delegates agreed to convene future meetings of the COP and COP/MOPs of both the Nagoya Protocol and the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety concurrently, beginning with the next meeting of the COP in Mexico in 2016.

A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE CBD AND ITS PROTOCOLS

The CBD was adopted on 22 May 1992 and entered into force on 29 December 1993. There are currently 193 parties to the Convention, which aims to promote the conservation of biodiversity, the sustainable use of its components, and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the use of genetic resources.

Three protocols have been adopted in the framework of the Convention: the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (Extraordinary Meeting of the COP, January 2000, Montreal, Canada); the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (Cartagena Protocol COP/MOP 5, October 2010, Nagoya, Japan); and the Nagoya Protocol on ABS (COP 10, October 2010, Nagoya). The COP, as the governing body of the Convention, has also adopted:

•  the Jakarta Mandate on marine and coastal biodiversity (COP 2, November 1995, Jakarta, Indonesia);

•  work programmes on agricultural and forest biodiversity (COP 3, November 1996, Buenos Aires, Argentina);

•  the Global Taxonomy Initiative (COP 4, May 1998, Bratislava, Slovakia);

•  work programmes on Article 8(j) (traditional knowledge), dry and sub-humid lands, and incentive measures (COP 5, May 2000, Nairobi, Kenya);

•  the Bonn Guidelines on ABS and the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation (COP 6, April 2002, The Hague, the Netherlands);

•  work programmes on mountain biodiversity, protected areas and technology transfer, the Akwé: Kon Guidelines for cultural, environmental and social impact assessments, and the Addis Ababa Principles and Guidelines for sustainable use (COP 7, February 2004, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia);

•  a work programme on island biodiversity (COP 8, March 2006, Curitiba, Brazil);

•  a resource mobilization strategy, and scientific criteria and guidance for marine areas in need of protection (COP 9, May 2008, Bonn, Germany); and

•  the CBD Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020, including the Aichi targets, and a decision on activities and indicators for the implementation of the resource mobilization strategy (COP 10, October 2010, Nagoya, Japan).

COP 11 (October 2012, Hyderabad, India) marked the move from policy-making to implementation. The meeting adopted a set of decisions including on ecosystem restoration, marine and coastal biodiversity and customary sustainable use, with a focus on implementation at the national and local levels. It also adopted an interim target of doubling biodiversity-related international financial resource flows to developing countries by 2015, and at least maintaining this level until 2020, coupled with targets aiming to improve the robustness of baseline information, as well as a preliminary reporting framework for monitoring resource mobilization.

CARTAGENA PROTOCOL ON BIOSAFETY: Adopted in January 2000 following protracted negotiations, the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety addresses the safe transfer, handling and use of living modified organisms (LMOs) that may have adverse effects on biodiversity, taking into account human health, with a specific focus on transboundary movements of LMOs. It introduces an advance informed agreement procedure for imports of LMOs for intentional introduction into the environment, and also incorporates the precautionary approach and mechanisms for risk assessment and risk management. The Protocol establishes a Biosafety Clearing-house (BCH) to facilitate information exchange, and contains provisions on capacity building and financial resources, with special attention to developing countries and those without domestic regulatory systems. It entered into force on 11 September 2003 and currently has 168 parties. The Protocol’s governing body is its COP/MOP, which has held six meetings so far. The major highlight in the Protocol’s operations is the adoption of the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress, as well as:

•  establishment of the Compliance Committee and agreement on documentation requirements for LMOs destined for direct introduction into the environment (COP/MOP 1, February 2004, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia);

•  establishment of an Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group (AHTEG) on risk assessment and risk management (COP/MOP 2, May-June 2005, Montreal, Canada);

•  adoption of requirements for documentation and identification of LMOs for food, feed or for processing (COP/MOP 3, March 2006, Curitiba);

•  establishment of an AHTEG on socio-economic considerations (COP/MOP 5, October 2012, Hyderabad); and

•  provisions for continued intersessional work on risk assessment and risk management and socio-economic considerations (COP/MOP 6, October 2014, Pyeongchang).

NAGOYA-KUALA LUMPUR SUPPLEMENTARY PROTOCOL: Concluded following six years of negotiations launched at COP/MOP 1, the Supplementary Protocol provides for international rules and procedures on liability and redress for damage to biodiversity resulting from LMOs. The major divergences during the negotiations concerned the nature of the regime and whether or not it should include legally-binding provisions on civil liability; definitions; and the issue of financial security. The Supplementary Protocol takes an “administrative approach” whereby the operator (person or entity in control of the LMO) or the competent authority if the operator is unable, is required to take response measures in the event of damage or sufficient likelihood of damage to biodiversity resulting from LMOs that find their origin in transboundary movements. Countries can provide for civil liability in their domestic law.

The Supplementary Protocol was opened for signature on 7 March 2011. With 26 ratifications to date, it will enter into force 90 days after the date of deposit of the 40th instrument of ratification.

NAGOYA PROTOCOL ON ABS: The objective of the Nagoya Protocol is the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources, including by appropriate access to genetic resources and by appropriate transfer of relevant technologies, taking into account all rights over those resources and to technologies, and by appropriate funding, thereby contributing to the conservation of biodiversity and the sustainable use of its components. It applies to genetic resources covered by the CBD and to traditional knowledge associated with such genetic resources, also covering genetic resources held by indigenous and local communities; sets out obligations for parties on access, benefit-sharing, and compliance; and provides for the establishment of national focal points and competent national authorities, an ABS Clearing-house, and implementation support through capacity building, technology transfer and financial provisions.

Negotiations spanned six years. Major controversial issues included: the scope of the instrument; derivatives and the concept of utilization; the relationship with other instruments; measures to support compliance, including with domestic ABS requirements; measures to monitor the utilization of genetic resources; traditional knowledge-related issues; and considerations regarding health emergencies and food security. COP 10 adopted the Nagoya Protocol as part of a “package” including the Strategic Plan and a decision on implementation of the resource mobilization strategy. It also established the Intergovernmental Committee for the Nagoya Protocol (ICNP) to undertake the preparations necessary for COP/MOP 1, which held three meetings from 2011-2013.

The Protocol opened for signature on 2 February 2011. With 54 ratifications, it entered into force on 12 October 2014.

COP 12 REPORT

On Monday, 6 October, Hem Pande (India), on behalf of the COP 11 Presidency, opened the meeting. He called on parties to agree to final targets on resource mobilization, and noted that sustainable development, ecosystem restoration and poverty eradication can be addressed concurrently, including through effective implementation of national biodiversity strategies and action plans (NBSAPs). COP 12 President Yoon Seong-kyu, Minister of Environment, Republic of Korea, underlined that the Fourth Global Biodiversity Outlook (GBO-4) findings reveal insufficient progress towards the realization of many Aichi targets. He hoped that the Pyeongchang Roadmap would be adopted; and underscored the need to mainstream biodiversity and integrate it in the post-2015 development agenda.

Achim Steiner, UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director, celebrated the rapid entry into force of the Nagoya Protocol, stressing the need to translate it into national policies and multi-stakeholder approaches. He underscored the tremendous efforts by developing countries, which, he said, should be reflected in decisions on finance; and called for a universal, integrated approach that seizes the opportunities present in the post-2015 development agenda, and shifts biodiversity to the heart of the economic discussion. He then announced the extension of the post of CBD Executive Secretary Braulio Dias for another term. Executive Secretary Dias stressed the significance of NBSAPs in informing the mid-term review of the Strategic Plan.

All regional groups welcomed the entry into force of the Nagoya Protocol. Mauritania, for the African Group, highlighted the need to substantially increase financial resources to step up implementation in developing countries, and urged focus on the Convention’s third objective (fair and equitable benefit-sharing). The European Union (EU) called for synergies and for mainstreaming biodiversity policies into other policy areas; stressed that the Strategic Plan objectives need to be appropriately reflected in the sustainable development goals (SDG) targets and indicators; and called for a balanced decision on resource mobilization, on the basis of the COP 11 agreement.

Grenada, for the Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC), prioritized discussions on resource mobilization, capacity building, scientific and technical cooperation and technology transfer; and, with Egypt, for the Arab Group, called for ensuring full and effective participation of all parties in CBD processes. Georgia, for Central and Eastern Europe (CEE), highlighted the importance of resource mobilization for NBSAPs implementation. Thailand, for the Asia-Pacific Group, noted the Convention has entered a new phase, in the context of discussions on the post-2015 development agenda and entry into force of the NP. Australia committed to implementing obligations under the CBD, including on funding. South Africa, for the Like-Minded Megadiverse Countries (LMMC), noted that implementation activities vary depending on national circumstances; and called for a solid target on resource mobilization and a substantial increase in financial resources.

The International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity (IIFB) prioritized discussions on, among others, terminology regarding indigenous peoples and local communities (IPLCs); synthetic biology; the participation of women and youth; and finance. The CBD Alliance drew attention to the rights of smallholder farmers and pastoralists, and urged using the precautionary principle, particularly regarding synthetic biology. WWF said achieving the Strategic Plan would contribute to poverty reduction, and urged accelerating its implementation by mainstreaming biodiversity through NBSAPs and engaging in the post-2015 development agenda. The Global Youth Biodiversity Network emphasized the importance of involving youth at all levels of decision making.

Ho-Min Jang, Republic of Korea, reported on Cartagena Protocol COP/MOP 7, highlighting decisions of relevance to the COP. Plenary took note of the reports of intersessional meetings (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/2-5). Executive Secretary Dias reported on the administration of the Convention, the trust funds and budget for the biennium 2015-2016 (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/7, 27, 27/Add.1 and INF/36), and on the first phase of the functional review of the Secretariat (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/INF/26 and 28).

ORGANIZATIONAL ISSUES:Delegates adopted the agenda and organization of work (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/1/Rev.1 and Add.1/Rev.1); and elected Eleni Marama Rova Tokaduadua (Fiji) as Rapporteur of the meeting, and Tone Solhaug (Norway) and María Luisa del Rio Mispireta (Peru) as Chairs of Working Group (WG) I and WG II, respectively. They deferred to COP 13 consideration of outstanding majority-voting rules in the Rules of Procedure and Financial Rules. Delegates established a budget group, chaired by Spencer Thomas (Grenada).

During the meeting, several contact groups and Friends of the Chair groups met to address: terminology regarding “indigenous peoples and local communities” under Article 8(j); resource mobilization and the financial mechanism; capacity building and the voluntary peer-review of NBSAPs; the proposed Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group (AHTEG) on indicators; ecologically or biologically significant marine areas (EBSAs); synthetic biology; cooperation with other organizations; and compliance under the NP. 

On Friday, 10 October, plenary heard a report on credentials and progress reports from WG Chairs; and elected Andrew Bignell (New Zealand) as Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) Chair. Plenary also elected the new Bureau members, as nominated by regional groups: Tia Stevens (Australia); Randolph Edmead (Saint Kitts and Nevis); Skumsa Mancotywa (South Africa); Mike Ipanga Mwaku (Democratic Republic of the Congo); Natalya Minchenko (Belarus); Senka Barudanovic (Bosnia and Herzegovina); Naohisa Okuda (Japan); and Yousef Al-Hafedh (Saudi Arabia). Remaining Bureau members were elected on Tuesday in a joint COP 12 and COP/MOP 1 plenary: María Luisa del Rio Mispireta (Peru); Andreas Obrecht (Switzerland); and Mette Gervin Damsgaard (Denmark). The new Bureau members will commence their term at the end of COP 12.

Plenary also elected the outstanding substitutes to serve on the NP COP/MOP 2 Bureau: Hem Pande (India); Belal Al-Hayek (Syria); Indarjit Ramdass (Guyana); Andreas Obrecht (Switzerland); and Elvana Ramaj (Albania).

This report summarizes discussions and outcomes on each agenda item. All draft decisions were made available in a compilation (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/1/Add.2/Rev.1) Decisions on liability and redress, the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation (GSPC) and invasive alien species (IAS) were adopted on Friday, 10 October. On Tuesday, 14 October, the COP adopted decisions on the subsidiary body for implementation (SBI), concurrent meetings, Article 8(j) and related provisions, and marine and coastal biodiversity. All remaining decisions were adopted during the closing plenary on 17 October. 

STRATEGIC PLAN FOR BIODIVERSITY

Fourth Global Biodiversity Outlook: On Monday, 6 October, in plenary, Executive Secretary Dias launched GBO-4 (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/9), which provides a summary of the mid-term assessment of progress towards Strategic Plan implementation.

Paul Leadley, Université Paris-Sud, leader of the GBO-4 technical group, noted that there is progress towards achieving the Aichi targets but at an insufficient rate. He used IAS as an illustration of the economic consequences of failing to address the main drivers of biodiversity loss. He presented a series of national case studies to show that the tide can be turned, and concluded with a vision of integrating biodiversity, development and climate change goals in a synergistic way.

Discussions continued in WG I. Many countries welcomed GBO-4, referred to translation efforts, and emphasized the need for resource mobilization, technology transfer and capacity building. Colombia emphasized the need for communication mechanisms to enable stakeholders to take action. Belarus suggested analyzing and using GBO-4 key findings in the review of NBSAPs. Many countries reported on their national efforts to implement the Strategic Plan. Fiji urged addressing the Aichi targets in an integrated manner through NBSAPs. Saint Lucia noted that areas of high importance for small island developing states (SIDS), including marine biodiversity, capacity building, resource mobilization and IAS, should be reflected in COP decisions. The Global Biodiversity Information Facility focused on Aichi Target 19 (improving and sharing biodiversity knowledge), noting its fulfillment will accelerate progress on other targets.

Delegates also discussed GBO-4 during negotiations of a decision on the mid-term review of progress in implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020.

Final Decision: The final decision is summarized under the mid-term review of progress below.

Mid-Term Review of Progress: This issue was first taken up in WG I on Monday, 6 October. The Secretariat introduced the draft decision and documents on key actions and indicators (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/1/Add.2/Rev.1, and 9/Add.1 and 2).

Cameroon, for the African Group, suggested placing key actions to enhance implementation on a scale of urgency and effectiveness and, with many, emphasized capacity building and resource mobilization. Malaysia stressed technical and scientific cooperation, and Fiji called for public-private partnerships. Mexico emphasized cooperation with other biodiversity-related conventions and processes. Bolivia urged respect for different country approaches to sustainable development; stressed that achievement of the Aichi targets by developing countries depends on the allocation of financial resources; and called for recognizing the rights of indigenous and local communities (ILCs), including land rights. Qatar called for clear national and regional goals that could converge with the implementation of international goals. Cautioning against prioritizing certain targets, Switzerland underscored that the Strategic Plan must be implemented as a whole.

Discussions focused on, inter alia: the GBO-4 conclusions; establishment of an Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group (AHTEG) on indicators; future SBSTTA work; and actions to address key scientific and technological needs, including access to and transfer of technology.

Final Decision: In its decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.12), the COP, inter alia: takes note of general GBO-4 conclusions and notes that Aichi Target 10 (coral reefs) will not be achieved by 2015; requests the Executive Secretary to develop a proposal on guidelines for the sixth national report, taking into account the types of information from the fifth national reports; and encourages parties, other governments and relevant organizations to disseminate GBO-4.

On enhancing implementation, the COP, inter alia:

•  takes note of key scientific and technical implementation needs, identified by SBSTTA and listed in Annex I to the decision, and invites parties to take action to address identified gaps;

•  encourages parties, other governments and organizations to make use of, in a flexible and voluntary manner, the list of key potential actions in GBO-4 and to further develop it with additional key potential actions;

•  invites parties, ILCs and other stakeholders to collaborate with the Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON) and relevant organizations, to address the priority needs identified by parties related to biodiversity observations and monitoring;

•  requests SBSTTA to evaluate the scope, process and findings of the GBO, and to review the main implications of the findings of GBO-4, its underlying technical reports and additional information to identify opportunities and actions, including, the contributions of collective actions of ILCs for the achievement of the Strategic Plan and the Aichi Targets; and

•  requests the Executive Secretary, subject to the availability of resources to, inter alia: convene a meeting of the AHTEG on Indicators for the Strategic Plan; and identify ways and means to address needs identified in Annex I, to strengthen scientific and technical capacities especially in developing country parties, in particular the least developed countries (LDCs), SIDS and economies in transition. Actions or measures to address these needs should include access to and transfer of technologies and the promotion of international technical and scientific cooperation.

In Annex I to its decision, the COP lists key scientific and technical needs related to the implementation of the strategic plan, identified by SBSTTA 17, in the areas of: social science, data and information, evaluation and assessment, planning and mainstreaming, linking science and policy, maintenance, conservation and restoration of ecosystems, economic instruments, traditional knowledge, scientific and technical cooperation, and different approaches.

Support for Implementation: This issue was first taken up in WG I on Tuesday, 7 October. The Secretariat introduced draft decisions and relevant documentation (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/10/Rev.1, 11 and 12). The issue was subsequently considered in a Friends of the Chair group.

A number of parties reported on their national efforts. The Gambia highlighted the major political and societal changes needed to achieve the targets. Ethiopia called for focus on areas where progress is lacking. Tonga, for Pacific Island States, stressed that national targets and indicators should be realistic, practical and aligned with regional and sub-regional frameworks. The Republic of Korea drew attention to the Bio-Bridge Initiative to promote technical and scientific cooperation. Japan expressed commitment to further support NBSAP-related activities through the Japan Biodiversity Fund. Many underscored the need for resource mobilization, capacity building and technology transfer for implementation, and China urged developed countries to honor their commitments. Malawi suggested enhancing information sharing on technology transfer. Togo called for support to address institutional weaknesses and stakeholder involvement. Thailand, with many, stressed the need for enhancing capacity-building initiatives and providing enabling tools; and noted the opportunity for collaboration with relevant technical and scientific bodies. Mexico and Niger, for the African Group, called for support for South-South cooperation.

Discussions throughout the week focused on, inter alia: funding for capacity-building initiatives; self-assessment of national capacity needs; technical and scientific cooperation and technology transfer; and the need to emphasize that support for implementation should come particularly from developed countries parties.

On technical and scientific cooperation and technology transfer, Ethiopia raised concerns over continued reference to pilot programmes, saying the Convention should move beyond experimentation. Delegates also discussed a request to the Secretariat to report on ways that allow monitoring and evaluation of technology transfer. On the provision of financial, technical and human resources, Canada, supported by the EU, suggested inviting parties in general, instead of specifying developed country parties to provide financial, technical and human resources. They explained this would take into account valuable experiences and knowledge that could be shared among all parties. China and the Gambia opposed, stressing the emphasis should be on developed country parties to provide resources. Parties agreed to invite developed country parties, and others in a position to do so, “particularly developed country parties.” Contention remained over Canada’s proposal to delete a comma separating developed country parties and other donors.

During WG I on Friday, 17 October, Canada, supported by the EU, Switzerland and Brazil preferred going back to original text, “inviting developed country parties, and others in a position to do so, to provide financial, technical and human resources,” without the emphasis “particularly developed country parties.” China, Liberia and Argentina opposed. Argentina proposed clearly separating developed country and developing country parties’ differing responsibilities into two paragraphs. China proposed specifying that support from others should be “on a voluntary basis.” Brazil preferred a reference to Convention Article 20 Paragraph 2, which specifies: developed country parties shall provide new and additional financial resources to enable developing country parties to meet the agreed full incremental costs to them of implementing measures that fulfill the obligations of this Convention. During the COP plenary on Friday evening, 17 October, WG I Chair Solhaug reported that delegates agreed after informal consultations to the original text.

Final Decision: The decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.19) is divided into three sections on: progress in revising/updating and implementing NBSAPs and submission of fifth national reports; communication, education and public awareness and the UN Decade on Biodiversity; and enhancing support in implementing the objectives of the Convention and its Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020, which is further sub divided into sub-sections on (1) provision of support for revising, updating and implementing NBSAPS and capacity building, (2) technical and scientific cooperation and technology transfer, (3) the clearing-house mechanism. In the decision, the COP, inter alia:

•  recognizes that capacity and financial gaps remain at the national level, especially in developing countries, and the need for continued capacity-building support to ILCs;

•  is mindful of the need for continued capacity-building support to parties, especially the developing countries among them, in order to further enhance the implementation of the Strategic Plan and its Aichi targets;

•  calls upon all parties to continue and to accelerate the implementation of their national biodiversity strategies and action plans;

•  encourages developing country parties, in particular the LDCs and SIDS among them, and economies in transition, as well as ILCs, to make available information regarding: their capacity-building needs and priorities identified through self-assessments, and to incorporate them in their NBSAPs; and their technical and scientific needs and priorities, and needs for technology transfer, and to make them available through the clearing-house mechanism;

•  invites developed country parties and donors to provide funding to developing countries, in particular the LDCs, SIDS and economies in transition, for the implementation of NBSAPs and for capacity building;

•  invites developed country parties, and others in a position to do so, to provide financial, technical and human resources to enable the further enhancement of technical and scientific cooperation and technology transfer among parties, in particular the LDCs, SIDS and economies in transition, as well as ILCs;

•  strongly encourages parties to accelerate the establishment and development of their national clearing-house mechanisms and requests the Executive Secretary to propose a process to grant an award to the parties that made most significant progress in this regard;

•  requests the Executive Secretary to, among other things: support and facilitate capacity-building initiatives relevant to targets where implementation has been weak, especially in developing countries, in particular the LDCs, SIDS, and economies in transition; enhance technical and scientific cooperation and technology transfer under the Convention; and undertake (i) an evaluation of the effectiveness of capacity-building activities that the Secretariat has supported and facilitated, (ii) a review of related partnership arrangements and opportunities for delivery, and (iii) an analysis of the gaps in capacity-building activities and, building on these elements, develop a short-term action plan;

•  invites parties to promote public awareness of the values of biodiversity; and

•  invites the Executive Secretary to facilitate the organization of―and invites the UN General Assembly to make available to COP 13 the outcomes of―the UN General Assembly’s interactive dialogue on Harmony with Nature.

RESOURCE MOBILIZATION

This issue was considered in WG I. On Tuesday, 7 October, the Secretariat introduced a draft decision and relevant documents (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/13, Add.1-4 and Add.5/Rev.1). Delegates debated two proposed options on targets for resource mobilization, both of which refer to the interim target of doubling biodiversity-related financial flows to developing countries by 2015, as agreed at COP 11. Kenya, for the African Group, called for doubling the interim target by 2017. China suggested the final target be reviewed at future COPs. The EU, Australia, Japan and Fiji, for Pacific Island States, stressed the need for a substantial increase of resources from all possible sources, including the private sector and innovative financial mechanisms, in line with the COP 11 decision. Canada underscored the need for domestic resource mobilization. Norway underlined the need to enhance efficiency through sector integration and creation of enabling conditions. The EU stressed the importance of mainstreaming biodiversity in all sectors. Argentina called for additional funding to assist countries in providing data to the financial reporting framework.

Bolivia and Venezuela expressed concern over commercializing natural resources and transferring responsibilities from the public to the private sector. Guatemala called for non-market-based approaches. The Philippines said that market-based approaches need validation before being endorsed. IUCN suggested that resource mobilization strategies include both market and non-market-based approaches.

The EU and New Zealand supported extending the resource mobilization strategy until 2020. On international financial flows, Bolivia called for a compliance mechanism, including monitoring and reporting to enhance transparency. India stressed the need for new and additional finance to meet the cost of biodiversity conservation and management, in particular in megadiverse countries. Peru called for prioritizing funding towards centers of origin.

On Aichi Target 3 (incentives), Thailand suggested organizing workshops and developing activities to assist parties in meeting milestones. Brazil encouraged tailor-made incentives according to country needs. Mexico called for national-level studies to progressively eliminate harmful incentives.

The UN Development Programme presented its Biodiversity Finance Initiative (BIOFIN). The IIFB warned that safeguards should provide for fair and equitable benefit-sharing through clear national frameworks. ECOROPA warned that innovative financial mechanisms should not lead to commodification of nature. A contact group on resource mobilization and the financial mechanism was established, co-chaired by Jeremy Eppel (UK) and Francis Ogwal (Uganda).

The contact group met nine times over six days and addressed, inter alia: targets for resource mobilization; mobilization of domestic resources; market and non-market based instruments and biodiversity financing mechanisms; modalities and milestones for Aichi Target 3; and the Financial Reporting Framework. Four additional meetings at the ministerial level took place on 15-16 October. On Friday, 17 October, Co-Chair Eppel reported to WG I that consensus had been reached. Delegates then considered the draft decision and approved it with minor amendments.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.32), the COP reaffirms its commitment to an overall substantial increase in total biodiversity-related funding for the implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 from a variety of sources, and adopts the following targets for resource mobilization:

•  double total biodiversity-related international financial resource flows to developing countries, in particular LDCs and SIDS, as well as countries with economies in transition, using average annual biodiversity funding for the years 2006-2010 as a baseline, by 2015, and at least maintain this level until 2020;

•  endeavor for 100%, but at least 75%, of parties to have included biodiversity in their national priorities or development plans by 2015 and have therefore made appropriate domestic financial provisions;

•  endeavor for 100%, but at least 75%, of parties provided with adequate financial resources to have reported domestic biodiversity expenditures, as well as funding needs, gaps and priorities, by 2015, in order to improve the robustness of the baseline;

•  endeavor for 100%, but at least 75%, of parties provided with adequate financial resources to have prepared national financial plans for biodiversity by 2015, and that 30% of those parties have assessed and/or evaluated the intrinsic, ecological, genetic, socio-economic, scientific, educational, cultural, recreational and aesthetic values of biological diversity and its components; and

•  mobilize domestic financial resources from all sources to reduce the gap between identified needs and available resources at the domestic level.

The COP further decides: to review, at COP 13, progress towards the above targets and their adequacy, and to consider the need for appropriate action; and to urge parties and other governments to develop national resource mobilization strategies or finance plans, using the targets for resource mobilization above as a flexible framework.

On technical support and capacity building, the COP welcomes initiatives, such as the Bio-Bridge Initiative, as important contributions to enhance technical support and capacity building for mobilizing resources. It notes with appreciation the work of the BIOFIN Initiative and other initiatives to support, encourage and facilitate the identification of funding needs, gaps and priorities, the development of national resource mobilization strategies, and of financial reporting, by providing technical support and guidance, and capacity building. The COP further encourages parties in a position to do so, as well as national, regional and international funding institutions, to provide additional financial support for capacity-building activities.

Regarding the strategy for resource mobilization, the COP urges parties and other governments to: further develop and use various sources of funding, including market and non-market-based instruments and biodiversity financing mechanisms; take the voluntary guidelines on safeguards in biodiversity financing mechanisms into account when selecting, designing and implementing biodiversity financing mechanisms; and consider undertaking a review and assessment of existing legislation and policies governing biodiversity financing mechanisms. The COP further adopts the voluntary guidelines on safeguards in biodiversity financing mechanisms.

On modalities and milestones for Aichi Target 3 (incentives), the COP adopts the milestones as a flexible framework and invites parties to: report progress in achieving these milestones, as well as any additional milestones and timelines established at the national level; and include information on practical experiences in the implementation of biodiversity-related positive incentives and lessons learned in applying options for overcoming obstacles encountered in implementing policies for addressing harmful incentives.

Regarding financial reporting, transparency and accessibility of information, the COP adopts the revised Financial Reporting Framework and requests the Secretariat to, inter alia: integrate the financial reporting framework into the draft guidelines for the sixth national reports; facilitate the exchange of views and experiences on collective action of ILCs; initiate technical work by organizing a technical expert workshop on identifying, accessing, compiling and aggregating domestic and international biodiversity-related investments and impacts; update and populate the Clearing-house Mechanism (CHM); and include, in the Global Monitoring Report, available quantitative information on funding sources and flows, as well as information on progress made in replicating and upscaling successful biodiversity financing mechanisms. The COP urges parties and other governments to report on their contribution to the collective efforts to reach the global targets for resource mobilization, against the established baseline, in their sixth and subsequent national reports.

The annexes include milestones and associated timelines for the full implementation of Aichi Target 3 (incentives) and the Financial Reporting Framework. Regarding milestones, it is suggested: by 2015, development of a national target reflecting Aichi Target 3 and associated action items is included in revised NBSAPs; by 2016, policy or legislative action is taken on incentives, including harmful subsidies, and national studies that identify candidates for elimination, phase-out or reform are finalized; and, by 2018, policy plans are finalized that identify those harmful incentives and prioritize their eventual elimination, phase-out or reform, as well as the introduction or strengthening of positive incentives for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.

FINANCIAL MECHANISM

On Wednesday, 8 October, in WG I, the Secretariat introduced the draft decision and relevant documentation (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/14). The Global Environment Facility (GEF) presented its report (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/14/Add.1), noting a shift from the previous prioritization of funding for the management of protected areas towards biodiversity mainstreaming and sustainable use. He further noted that the sixth replenishment of the GEF (GEF-6) addresses the failure to price the full value of ecosystems.

The EU stressed the importance of involving the private sector and innovative financial mechanisms and, with Canada and Morocco, of increased cooperation among conventions. Thailand called for greater efforts to include co-financing schemes with regional banks and the private sector. Colombia, with Fiji and Uruguay, called for including multi-focal projects, particularly regarding poverty reduction and planning. Switzerland, Canada and New Zealand suggested a joint contact group with NP COP/MOP 1. Liberia, for the African Group, urged the GEF to take into account the guidance given by the Convention’s protocols.

The contact group on resource mobilization and the financial mechanism addressed the financial mechanism, with respect to both the Convention and the NP. Regarding the Convention, deliberations focused on, inter alia: enhancement of programmatic synergies among the biodiversity-related conventions; actions to be taken by the GEF to further improve the effectiveness of the financial mechanism; and determination of funding requirements in anticipation of GEF-7. On Friday, 17 October, Co-Chair Ogwal reported on the work of the contact group, noting that consensus has been reached.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.33) on enhancing synergies among the biodiversity-related conventions, the COP invites parties to enhance coordination among their respective biodiversity-related conventions national focal points in order to identify national priorities in support of implementation. It also invites the governing bodies of the conventions to provide elements of advice concerning the funding of such national priorities, for consideration by COP 13.

On the fourth review of the effectiveness of the financial mechanism, the COP decides, with a view to further streamlining guidance to the GEF, to review proposed new guidance to avoid or reduce repetitiveness, consolidate previous guidance and prioritize guidance in the context of the Aichi targets. It invites the GEF to: enhance its catalytic role in mobilizing new and additional financial resources; continue to streamline the project cycle; and coordinate with the CBD Secretariat on how to better measure progress in achieving the Aichi targets through GEF-supported initiatives. It decides to undertake, at COP 13, the second determination of funding requirements for the implementation of the Convention and its Protocols.

The COP invites the financial mechanism to implement guidance adopted by the COP/MOPs to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety and the NP; and calls for funds and technical support for implementation of programmes that: promote customary sustainable use of biodiversity; accelerate efforts towards achieving the Aichi targets in marine and coastal areas; and support sustainable tourism that contributes to the Convention’s objectives.

BIODIVERSITY AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

Integratingbiodiversity into the post-2015 UN development agenda and the SDGs: This issue (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/15, and INF/45) was considered in WG I on Wednesday, 8 October and subsequently on 14-15 October. During the High-level Segment on Wednesday, 15 October, ministers and heads of UN agencies and programmes held a panel discussion on the issue.

Many parties highlighted that biodiversity affects the achievement of all SDGs, and supported continuous work on integrating the Strategic Plan and Aichi targets into the post-2015 development agenda and SDGs. Colombia highlighted work on indicators; Bolivia suggested a focus on harmony with nature; and Argentina underscored traditional knowledge (TK). The Philippines suggested drawing attention to: the rights of ILCs; benefit-sharing; sustainable public finance; and supporting SIDS. Brazil proposed that future work take into account the work of the Intergovernmental Committee of Experts on Sustainable Development Financing. The UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII) urged recognition of indigenous peoples’ rights to self-determination and self-government.

Biodiversity, poverty eradication and development: This matter (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/15 and INF/16) was first considered in WG I on Wednesday, 8 October, and was further discussed on 14-15 October. During the HLS on Wednesday, 15 October, ministers addressed this issue in a panel on integrating NBSAPs into national and local development and poverty eradication strategies and planning processes.

India said the Chennai Guidance contains useful elements that parties should use in their national laws and policies. Thailand called for a strategy to implement the Chennai Guidance, integrating it with the action plan on customary sustainable use. Canada, the EU and Japan emphasized reference to national circumstances. The UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) underscored trade as a crucial enabler to maximize efficiency.

Final Decision: In its decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.14), the COP stresses the need for the post-2015 development agenda and SDGs to support the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and to tackle the underlying drivers of biodiversity loss. The COP encourages parties, ILCs, and others, inter alia, to fully engage in the discussions and to integrate and mainstream the objectives of the Convention and the Strategic Plan and the Aichi targets into all relevant SDGs, targets and indicators, as well as the means of implementation, highlighting the crucial importance of biodiversity and ecosystem services and functions for sustainable development. The COP also, inter alia:

•  requests the Secretariat, subject to the availability of resources, to continue collaboration with key partners to actively contribute to the discussions of the post-2015 development agenda and the SDGs;

•  invites parties to raise awareness of best practices of sustainable use, including agro-ecological approaches with positive impacts on the conservation of biodiversity, in order to address pressures on biodiversity; and

•  encourages parties, other governments, international organizations, multilateral and regional development banks and the private sector and communities to recognize and take into account the diverse and holistic, and intrinsic values of biodiversity, including its spiritual and cultural values, and to use appropriate and effective non-market-based, market-based and rights-based approaches.

The COP further encourages parties to, inter alia:

•  integrate biodiversity and nature’s benefits for people, including ecosystem services and functions, into poverty eradication and development strategies, initiatives and processes at all levels; poverty eradication and development concerns and priorities into NBSAPs; and national budgeting processes;

•  promote actions compatible with biodiversity conservation to strengthen food security and nutrition as mechanisms for poverty eradication in rural areas; consider TK related to biodiversity conservation in their policies and initiatives; and apply the Chennai Guidance; and

•  enhance the contribution of biodiversity to sustainable development and poverty reduction through the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources and associated with TK, biodiversity conservation and the sustainable use of its components.

The annex to the decision contains the Chennai Guidance for the Integration of Biodiversity and Poverty Eradication. The Chennai Guidance includes an introduction and three sections on: integration of biodiversity and poverty eradication for sustainable development; minimizing adverse impacts, and facilitating participation; and capacity building, enabling environment and funding support, which has sub-sections on (a) enhancing capacity building (b) strengthening the enabling environment and (c) providing adequate funding.

Biodiversity and human health: This matter (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/16) was first considered in WG I on Wednesday, 8 October, and subsequently discussed on Thursday, 16 October.

Namibia, for the African Group, stressed that species and genetic diversity are necessary for healthy ecosystems and populations. Cameroon, with many African countries, said Ebola illustrates the linkages between biodiversity and health. Cuba noted that Cuban medical staff have been posted to Africa as part of the international response to Ebola; and stressed the interrelationship between biodiversity and human health should be a key element of the post-2015 development agenda. Guinea, with others, stressed the need for additional research on links between human, animal and ecosystem health, and rapid response measures. Some drew attention to the Libreville Declaration on Health and Environment in Africa. On the State of Knowledge Review on biodiversity and health, Colombia called for including health management by ILCs.

Many supported the “One Health” approach. Japan, Brazil and the UN University drew attention to the CBD/World Health Organization (WHO) joint work programme on biodiversity and health activities. Many stressed the importance of traditional medicine. TRAFFIC drew attention to the ongoing revision of their guidelines on the conservation of medicinal plants.

Final Decision: In its decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.29), the COP, inter alia:

•  encourages parties to consider biodiversity and health linkages in the preparation of NBSAPs, development plans, and national health strategies in line with the relevant international commitments, such as the Libreville Declaration on Health and Environment in Africa and the Changwon Declaration on human well-being and wetlands;

•  emphasizes the relevance of the interlinkages between biodiversity and human health for the post-2015 development agenda and the SDGs, and, in this context, invites parties and others to consider the information in “Connecting Global Priorities: Biodiversity and Human Health,” to identify opportunities for mutually supporting implementation of NBSAPs and national strategies, plans and programmes for human health; and

•  invites parties to consider the contribution of TK and customary practices to human health.

The COP further requests the Executive Secretary, subject to the availability of resources, to, inter alia:

•  prepare a report on the implications of the findings of the “Connecting Global Priorities: Biodiversity and Human Health,” for the work under the Convention for consideration by a meeting of the SBSTTA prior to COP 13;

•  strengthen collaboration on the interlinkages between biodiversity and health with other relevant organizations; and

•  prepare a synthesis of available information on the inter-linkages between biodiversity and emerging infectious diseases, such as the Ebola virus, including the common causes of biodiversity loss, disease emergence and related management practices, and the potential for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem management to contribute to reducing disease emergence and related risks to human health, and identify possible further steps for work in this regard.

MAINSTREAMING GENDER CONSIDERATIONS

This matter (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/17) was first considered in WG I on Wednesday, 8 October, and subsequently discussed on Wednesday, 15 October. Several parties welcomed the 2015-2020 Gender Plan of Action, supported the draft decision and reported on their national gender strategies, with developing countries calling for capacity-building support. India called for replicating best practices on mainstreaming gender considerations. Some delegates stressed the need to include the views of indigenous women.

Final Decision: In its decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.17), the COP, inter alia:

•  recognizes the importance of gender to the achievement of the Aichi targets and additional work is required, including with regard to collecting and using gender disaggregated data;

•  encourages parties to: give gender due consideration in their NBSAPs and to integrate gender into the development of national indicators; and build capacity to integrate biodiversity considerations into national gender policies and action plans;

•  requests that the Biodiversity Indicators Partnership, together with the IUCN, with respect to its work on the Environment and Gender Index, continue to consider how gender-disaggregated data can be mainstreamed into the development of indicators for the Aichi targets and take the necessary steps to finalize a set of preliminary indicators identified for biodiversity and gender; and

•  welcomes the 2015-2020 Gender Plan of Action under the CBD contained in the annex, and emphasizes the need to build awareness of the Plan and capacity for its implementation.

The COP further requests the Secretariat to, inter alia:

•  collect, in collaboration with relevant partners, and subject to the availability of resources, case studies and best practices, including those provided by parties and ILCs, on monitoring, evaluation and indicators on gender mainstreaming regarding biodiversity, to disseminate this information through the CHM and to explore ways to encourage replication of such practices;

•  provide input to the ongoing discussion on the post-2015 development agenda and the SDGs on links between gender and biodiversity; and

•  support, subject to availability of resources, the implementation of the Gender Plan of Action, including at the national level.

The annex to the decision contains the 2015-2020 Gender Plan of Action under the CBD. The Gender Plan includes an introduction with strategic objectives; and a section on possible actions by parties as well as a framework for actions by the Secretariat, both divided into four subsections addressing policy, organizational, delivery and constituency spheres.

ACCESS AND BENEFIT-SHARING

This issue was considered in plenary on Monday, 6 October. Delegates took note of a status report on the Nagoya Protocol (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/6 and 8/Rev.1). 

The Secretariat introduced a draft decision, noting the need to maintain coherence of work on ABS-related issues and an integrated approach with the NP. Many countries welcomed the Protocol’s entry into force. Switzerland preferred not to have a COP decision, given that the Protocol has been negotiated “over years.” Namibia, for the African Group, said that parties who do not join the NP are still accountable regarding their ABS obligations under the CBD. She proposed text, requesting that CBD parties that are non-parties to the Protocol report to COP 13, and at each subsequent meeting, on their regulatory and policy actions to implement their ABS obligations, and share such information through the Access and Benefit-sharing Clearing-house (ABS-CH). She also called for submission of information on the utilization of genetic resources and TK, and associated benefit-sharing occurring outside the ambit of the NP. The EU stressed the importance of an integrated approach to promote a common vision for the Convention and the NP, noting the need for work on cross-cutting issues, including the CHM and capacity building. Canada noted that not all elements of CBD Article 15 (access to genetic resources) were fully covered under the NP. Delegates approved a conference room paper (CRP).

The draft decision submitted by the COP 12 presidency was adopted in plenary on Tuesday, 14 October.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/CRP.1/Rev.1), emphasizing that the ABS provisions of the Convention continue to apply to all parties to the Convention, the COP, inter alia:

•  welcomes the entry into force of the NP, which is a significant step towards meeting the third objective of the Convention;

•  urges all CBD parties that have not yet ratified the NP to do so;

•  recalls Article 26 of the Convention (reporting), and also recalls that these reports should include information on measures taken in relation to ABS and related provisions of the Convention, in particular in relation to Article 15 of the Convention; and

•  requests the Secretariat to prepare a note on possible ways and means to promote integrated approaches to issues at the interface between the ABS-related provisions of the Convention and the NP provisions.

BIODIVERSITY MAINSTREAMING

On Friday, 10 October, plenary held an informal dialogue on biodiversity mainstreaming. Delegates discussed “areas of need” regarding mainstreaming biodiversity, underscoring political will, visionary leadership, improved communication, and convincing policymakers of the economic value of biodiversity and its contribution to the national economy. Delegates considered ways of reversing biodiversity loss, highlighting the need for, inter alia: political will; synergies among biodiversity-related conventions; diversified funding for biodiversity protection; achieving political coherence in governments; and addressing perverse incentives. For more detailed coverage, see http://www.iisd.ca/vol09/enb09640e.html

ARTICLE 8(J)

On Monday, 6 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decisions and documents (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/1/Add.2/Rev.1, UNEP/CBD/COP/12/5 and Add.1, and UNEP/CBD/COP/12/INF/1, and Add.1 and 2).

WG II delegates considered a draft decision on the term “indigenous peoples and local communities” (IPLCs). Many parties stressed the importance of full participation of ILCs. However, delegates were divided on the use of the term IPLCs. Canada argued that the CBD addresses in situ conservation of biodiversity in relation to communities that are living “traditional lifestyles” dependent on biodiversity and opposed formally amending the treaty. Indonesia and the Republic of Korea preferred to maintain CBD language on ILCs. The EU, Uganda, Costa Rica, Guatemala, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Switzerland, Argentina, Norway, Bolivia, Colombia, Peru, Brazil and UNPFII supported reference to IPLCs.

The use of the term “IPLCs” was then considered in a Friends of the Chair group. On Thursday, 16 October, delegates approved the CRP on use of IPLCs.

In closing plenary, following the adoption of the decision, Canada stated that: the term IPLCs can only be used on an exceptional basis, without prejudice to the Convention; and his country will not take into account the COP decision on the terminology when interpreting its obligations under the CBD, and will not regard it as establishing new rights for indigenous peoples.

On Monday, 6 October, delegates also considered a draft decision on Article 8(j) and related provisions. Recounting an in-depth discussion at the ninth meeting of the WG on Article 8(j), the EU, the Philippines and others supported a dialogue focusing on “Communication, Education and Public Awareness” (CEPA), while many others preferred the topic “Protecting shared TK across borders: challenges and opportunities for regional cooperation.”

On developing guidelines under tasks 7, 10 and 12 of the work programme (prior informed approval and benefit-sharing from the use of TK, unlawful appropriation of TK, and guidance for national legislation), the EU called for focusing on gaps and measures to complement the NP, for example with regard to the provisions of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGR), especially on farmers’ rights.

On repatriation of TK, Mexico said greater clarity on its scope and implications will be needed, before adopting any guidelines. The EU said the plan of action should facilitate the exchange of information, rather than restrict it.

The IIFB called for safeguards on the protection of TK, and highlighted that indigenous peoples are rights-holders, not only TK-holders.

On Friday, 10 October, delegates addressed a CRP on Article 8(j) and related provisions. On the draft plan of action on customary sustainable use, the EU proposed reverting to the original text agreed by the Working Group on Article 8(j), which delegates approved as a package.

On the development of best-practice guidelines for the repatriation of TK, delegates agreed to include a footnote explaining that the “seven” observers mentioned correspond to UNPFII’s seven socio-cultural regions.

On the contribution of tasks 7, 10 and 12 of the work programme on Article 8(j) to work under the Convention and the NP, delegates agreed to maintain Protocol language regarding the “prior and informed consent (PIC), or approval and involvement” of ILCs. Delegates approved the draft decision as amended.

Final Decisions: In the decision on Article 8(j) and related provisions – terminology “IPLCs” (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.26), the COP: decides to use IPLCs in future decisions and secondary documents under the Convention, as appropriate, and decides that:

•  the use of IPLCs in any future decisions and secondary documents shall not affect in any way the legal meaning of Article 8(j) and related provisions;

•  the use of IPLCs may not be interpreted as implying, for any party, a change in rights or obligations under the Convention; and

•  the use of IPLCs in future decisions and secondary documents shall not constitute a context for the purpose of interpretation of the CBD.

The COP also notes the recommendations arising from the UNPFII’s 11th and 12th sessions and requests that the Secretariat continue to inform UNPFII on developments of mutual interest.

The decision on Article 8(j) and related provisions (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.7) consists of five parts. In the first part of the decision on the progress report on the implementation of the Article 8(j) programme of work and related provisions and mechanisms to promote ILCs’ effective participation in the work of the Convention, with regard to progress and participation, the COP, inter alia: takes note with appreciation of the outcome document of the high-level plenary meeting of the General Assembly known as the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples; invites parties, ILCs and others to submit information on Article 8(j) implementation, and requests the Secretariat to compile, analyze and make available information received for consideration by both the 9th meeting of the Article 8(j) WG and during the implementation of the Strategic Plan 2011-2020; and decides that one meeting of the Article 8(j) WG be organized prior to COP 13, with ILCs’ full and effective participation.

On TK and customary sustainable use indicators, the COP, inter alia:

•  requests the Secretariat, in collaboration with parties, the IIFB Working Group on Indicators, the Biodiversity Indicators Partnership and others, and subject to the availability of resources, to continue to organize and facilitate international and regional workshops on indicators on the status of TK, innovations and practices, and customary sustainable use;

•  requests the Secretariat to transmit information on Community-Based Monitoring and Information Systems (CBMIS), as well as the note by the Secretariat on indicators relevant for TK and customary sustainable use to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystems Services (IPBES);

•  encourages parties and ILCs to consider how ILCs might effectively participate in the development, collection and analysis of data, including through Community-Based Monitoring, and further explore how ILCs’ CBMIS can contribute to monitoring of Aichi target indicators;

•  invites IPBES to consider the potential contributions of CBMIS  in meeting the Platform’s objectives when implementing work programmes of relevance, such as work by the Task Force on Indigenous and Local Knowledge;

•  invites IPBES to inform the next meeting of the Article 8(j) WG on their TK-related work; and

•  invites IPBES members to consider the inclusion of ILC representatives, when making nominations to the Multidisciplinary Expert Panel and other IPBES processes.

On the in-depth dialogue on thematic areas and other cross-cutting issues, the COP: encourages parties, ILCs and others, and requests the Secretariat, to consider the advice and recommendations of the in-depth dialogue on: “Connecting TK systems and science, such as under IPBES, including gender dimensions” when implementing the relevant areas of work under the Convention; requests the Secretariat to transmit the summary of the in-depth dialogue to IPBES to contribute to its work on the development of guidelines to consider TK in the IPBES process; and decides that the topic of the third in-depth dialogue, to be held at the ninth meeting of the Article 8(j) WG, shall be “Challenges and opportunities for international and regional cooperation in the protection of shared TK across borders for the strengthening of TK and the fulfilment of three objectives of the Convention, in harmony with Nature/Mother Earth.”

In the second part of the decision on Article 10, with a focus on Article 10(c), as major component of the Article 8(j) programme of work, the COP, inter alia:

•  endorses the action plan on customary sustainable use of biodiversity annexed to the decision;

•  invites parties, ILCs and others to implement the action plan, taking into account diverse national circumstances, and to report progress to the Secretariat, also through the national reporting process;

•  decides that the development and implementation of all activities of the plan of action should be undertaken with ILCs’ full and effective participation;

•  acknowledges that other initiatives, such as the International Partnership for the Satoyama Initiative, are contributing to the facilitation of customary sustainable use of biodiversity; and

•  requests the Secretariat, in partnership with relevant organizations and subject to the availability of funding, to support the implementation of the action plan through organization of regional and sub-regional workshops and other capacity-building activities involving ILCs.

The draft plan of action on customary sustainable use of biodiversity is contained in an annex.

In the third part of the decision on the development of best-practice guidelines for the repatriation of TK relevant to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, the COP, inter alia:

•  decides, subject to the availability of funding, to convene a meeting of a group of government-nominated experts on the repatriation of TK, including a proportionate number of observers, also from ILCs, with a view to developing draft voluntary guidelines to promote and enhance the repatriation of TK, for consideration by the 9th meeting of the Article 8(j) Working Group;

•  invites parties, the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), UNPFII, ILCs and others to submit relevant information and their views on the development of the draft voluntary guidelines to the Secretariat; and

•  requests that the Secretariat: compile and make available the information and views received to the meeting of the technical expert group; prepare draft elements of voluntary guidelines; and transmit the result of the technical expert group’s work on the draft voluntary guidelines, as well as the compilation of information and views, to the ninth meeting of the Article 8(j) WG with a view to consideration by COP 13.

In the fourth part of the decision on how tasks 7, 10 and 12 could best contribute to work under the Convention and to the NP, the COP decides to: implement tasks 7, 10 and 12 in an integrated manner that is mutually supportive of the NP and of the work undertaken in other international fora through the development of voluntary guidelines, with ILCs’ full and effective participation, that will assist parties and governments in the development of legislation or other mechanisms, including national action plans and sui generis systems for an effective implementation of Article 8(j); and include the following sub-tasks in priority order:

•  Phase I: the Article 8(j) WG is to: develop guidelines for the development of mechanisms, legislation or other appropriate initiatives to ensure that private and public institutions interested in using such knowledge, practices and innovations obtain the PIC or approval of ILCs, and that ILCs obtain a fair and equitable share of benefits arising from such use; and develop standards and guidelines for the reporting and prevention of unlawful appropriation of TK, and a glossary of relevant key terms and concepts;

•  Phase II: the WG may consider further work on the advancement of the identification of the obligations of countries of origin, as well as parties and governments where such knowledge, innovations and practices are used, in light of progress made on priorities under Phase I.

The COP also, inter alia: decides that: COP 13 will address and adopt the voluntary guidance developed under each sub-task as a stand-alone but complementary element of the overarching task; and invites parties, ILCs and others to submit, and requests the Secretariat to compile and analyze, views, including information on community protocols, model clauses, best practices, experiences and practical examples for the PIC or approval and involvement processes for access to the knowledge, innovations and practices of ILCs relevant for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and for the sharing of benefits arising from the use of this knowledge with those communities.

In the fifth part of the decision on sui generis systems, the COP, inter alia:

•  takes note of the revised elements for sui generis systems for the protection, preservation and promotion of TK, innovations and practices of ILCs, as contained in the note by the Secretariat (UNEP/CBD/WG8J/8/6/Add.1), and invites parties to make use of them as may be appropriate in their particular circumstances and in accordance with national legislation;

•  invites the Article 8(j) WG to use the possible elements and draft glossary, as appropriate, in its work on tasks 7, 10 and 12;

•  invites parties, ILCs and others to submit their views on possible elements of, and experiences with, sui generis systems;

•  requests the Secretariat to produce a technical series publication on the possible elements of sui generis systems, taking into account the information submitted and experience gathered, with a view to informing the work of parties, ILCs and others on the development of sui generis systems;

•  urges parties and other governments to recognize, support and encourage the development of local sui generis systems by ILCs, and invites them to report on these initiatives through the national reporting process, the Article 8(j) WG and the Convention’s TK Information Portal;

•  encourages parties and other governments to develop mechanisms to promote compliance with sui generis systems; and

•  requests the Secretariat to continue to inform the Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore (IGC) of the work carried out regarding sui generis systems and to continue engaging with the WIPO IGC with a view to ensuring complementarity and avoiding overlaps.

LIABILITY AND REDRESS

In WG II on Tuesday, 7 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decision and the Secretariat’s note (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/1/Add.2/Rev.1 and UNEP/CBD/COP/12/18). South Africa, for the African Group, Argentina and Brazil said the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress to the Cartagena Protocol does not provide useful guidance on damage to biodiversity in the context of Article 14(2) (liability and redress for damage to biodiversity, including restoration and compensation), given its issue-specific focus. While several parties welcomed UNEP’s Guidelines for the development of domestic legislation on liability, response action and compensation for damage caused by activities dangerous to the environment, the African Group noted their voluntary character. Canada called for reference to the work of the CBD Group of Legal and Technical Experts on Liability and Redress.

New Zealand, Argentina, Canada and Australia did not see the need for developing new guidelines on liability and redress at this stage. The EU urged gaining experience with available tools before developing new ones and stressed the need to incorporate awareness-raising and capacity-building activities. Niger called for a clear definition of damage to biodiversity. Brazil supported grounding liability in Principle 2 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development (transboundary harm prevention).

On Thursday, 9 October, delegates approved a CRP with minor amendments.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.2), the COP: notes the progress made since COP 8 in developing guidance, in particular in the areas of restoration, and valuation of biodiversity; and invites parties, in any efforts to develop or adjust national policy, legislation, guidelines or administrative measures concerning liability and redress for damage to biodiversity, to take into account, inter alia:

•  relevant provisions and approaches of the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress;

•  UNEP Guidelines for the development of domestic legislation on liability, response action and compensation for damage caused by activities dangerous to the environment;

•  conclusions of the Group of Legal and Technical Experts on Liability and Redress; and

•  the synthesis report on technical information relating to damage to biodiversity and approaches to valuation and restoration of damage to biodiversity, as well as information on national/domestic measures and experiences.

The COP also decides to review this item further at COP 14 on the basis of information that the Secretariat makes available regarding liability and redress for damage to biodiversity, including information on any new developments in the adoption and implementation of response measures for damage to the environment in general and to biological diversity in particular, including restoration and compensation.

MARINE AND COASTAL BIODIVERSITY

This item was introduced in WG II on Tuesday, 7 October, and further considered throughout the second week. The Secretariat introduced draft decisions on ecologically or biologically significant marine areas (EBSAs), and on other matters, including impacts of anthropogenic underwater noise and ocean acidification, priority actions to achieve Aichi Target 10 (coral reefs), and marine spatial planning and training initiatives. The issue of further work on EBSAs was also considered by a Friends of the Chair group.

EBSAs: Delegates discussed two main issues: the information contained in the regional workshop report; and further work on EBSAs. Many countries supported “welcoming” the work of the scientific and technical evaluation of information contained in the regional workshop reports for describing EBSAs, while Thailand, Argentina and Singapore preferred “taking note” of the work.

On further work, three options were considered: a request to the Secretariat to tabulate information on the types and levels of human activities in areas described as meeting the EBSA criteria; a broader request to the Secretariat to undertake a scientific and technical analysis of the status of marine and coastal biodiversity in relation to the types and levels of human activity in such areas; and no further work.

South Africa, for the African Group, with the Russian Federation, Norway, Australia, Jordan, Ecuador, Maldives and Egypt, supported the first option, with Canada supporting it as a basis for discussion, noting the importance of collaboration with relevant organizations in this regard. Costa Rica and Malaysia supported the second option, with the EU proposing modifications.

Palau, for Pacific Island States, with Colombia, Mexico, India, Argentina, Fiji, China, Yemen, Turkey, Brazil and others, preferred deleting reference to further work on EBSAs, with Mexico noting that this goes beyond the mandate of the Convention and, with China and Brazil, calling for finalization of the description of EBSAs in all regions before further work is undertaken.

Iceland called for a peer review process to ensure the scientific quality of data, and, addressing an outstanding issue from SBSTTA 18, lifted his country’s reservation over the inclusion of nine areas meeting the EBSA criteria in the Arctic Ocean and the Northwest Atlantic Ocean. The Russian Federation stressed that the EBSA description process does not determine the manner in which these areas will be governed. Morocco appreciated the qualifier that the description of EBSAs does not imply any position regarding their legal status or borders. Discussions on this issue were forwarded to a Friends of the Chair group to resolve the issue of outstanding work.

On a bracketed paragraph in the CRP, presented to WG II, suggesting further work on EBSAs, lengthy discussion ensued on a proposal by Argentina, supported by Peru, to delete a phrase requesting parties to share information resulting from the scientific and technical analysis on the status of marine and coastal biodiversity through the EBSA information-sharing mechanism. This was opposed by the EU, Canada, Iceland, Fiji, Mauritania, Malaysia, Norway and many others. In a bid to reach agreement, Canada, Iceland and the EU agreed to lift the brackets around the original paragraph, noting the delicate compromise arrived at in the Friends of the Chairs group. WG II Chair Mispireta preferred the deletion of the paragraph, noting a lack of consensus. Canada and others agreed to the deletion of the controversial phrase, and delegates then lifted the brackets around the entire paragraph. The CRP was adopted with these and other amendments.

In plenary, Morocco registered reservations to EBSAs described in the Eastern Tropical and Temperate Pacific. Delegates adopted the draft decision, without amendment.

Final Decision: In the final decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.20), the COP, inter alia:

•  welcomes the scientific and technical evaluation of information contained in the reports of the regional workshops for describing EBSAs held in seven regions;

•  encourages parties and other governments to make use of the scientific information regarding the description of areas meeting EBSA criteria, including the information in the EBSA repository and information-sharing mechanism, as well as the information from ILCs when carrying out marine spatial planning, development of representative networks of marine protected areas; and

•  invites parties and other governments who find it appropriate to do so, individually, in accordance with national legislation, bilaterally or jointly at the regional level, and, where appropriate, in collaboration with competent intergovernmental organizations, in accordance with international law, including UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, to undertake scientific and technical analysis of the status of marine and coastal biodiversity in areas within the respective jurisdictions of parties and other governments and the mandates of intergovernmental organizations, described as meeting the EBSA criteria and contained in the EBSA repository.

The annex contains the reports from the seven regional workshops describing EBSAs.

Other Matters: On underwater noise, Senegal, with Indonesia, called for studies in developing countries. Brazil called for collaboration with the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO). Norway, with the EU, noted the difficulty of conducting appropriate impact assessments and monitoring, and establishing thresholds to protect sound-sensitive species.

Japan, Norway, the EU, and Saint Kitts and Nevis supported priority action on Aichi Target 10 with Maldives and others calling for adequate financial and technical resources to achieve it.

On marine spatial planning (MSP), the African Group urged parties to ensure that capacity-building and partnership activities are conducted. The Philippines, with WWF, highlighted MSP as a tool for applying the ecosystem-based approach.

Considering a draft decision, delegates agreed to, inter alia, include specific reference to “indigenous” and local communities, where appropriate. Delegates agreed to invite competent intergovernmental organizations to assist parties in taking appropriate measures, “limited to those that are within the mandate of the respective competent intergovernmental organizations,” to address adverse impacts of anthropogenic underwater noise on marine and coastal biodiversity.

They also discussed including “environmentally-vulnerable countries,” in a call to the GEF and other development partners to provide capacity building, and agreed: to refer to Convention Article 20, paragraph 7 (special situation of developing countries); and that all requests to the GEF will be considered under the decision on the financial mechanism. In plenary on Tuesday, delegates adopted the draft decision.

Final Decision:  In the final decision ((UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.9), the COP, on underwater noise, inter alia: invites competent intergovernmental organizations, including the IMO, CMS, and the International Whaling Commission, to take measures within their mandates to assist countries in taking measures, limited to those that are within the mandates of the respective competent intergovernmental organizations, to avoid, minimize and mitigate the potential significant adverse impacts of anthropogenic underwater noise on marine and coastal biodiversity.

On the impacts of ocean acidification on marine and coastal biodiversity, the COP, inter alia: requests the Secretariat to collaborate with UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission and other relevant scientific groups, organizations and ILCs to raise awareness of the key findings of the updated synthesis of the impacts of ocean acidification on marine biodiversity, and facilitate incorporating these findings into relevant national strategies and action plans concerning conservation and sustainable use of marine and coastal biodiversity, as well as developing relevant research and monitoring programmes at the global, regional and national levels.

On priority actions to achieve Aichi Biodiversity Target 10, the COP, inter alia, requests the Secretariat to facilitate:

•  implementation of the priority actions to achieve Aichi Biodiversity Target 10 by organizing capacity-building workshops and developing information-sharing mechanisms on experiences and lessons learned from various implementation activities, in collaboration with parties and others; and

•  strengthening international and regional cooperation in support of national implementation of the priority actions, and develop a global coral reef portal linked to the Convention website and existing global and regional initiatives to facilitate technical collaboration and voluntary information-sharing on all aspects of sustainable management of coral reefs and related ecosystems.

On MSP, the COP, inter alia, invites donors and funding agencies to continue to support capacity building to developing countries in order to further accelerate existing efforts towards achieving the Aichi targets in marine and coastal areas.

INVASIVE ALIEN SPECIES

In WG II on Tuesday, 7 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decisions and documents (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/19, and INF/8, 9, 10 and 34). Many countries supported the draft decisions, in particular the voluntary guidance on measures to address the risks associated with the introduction of alien species as pets, aquarium and terrarium species, and as live bait and live food. Bolivia called for strengthening control measures on the introduction of IAS through trade. Belarus, with many, supported the establishment and work of the Global IAS Information Partnership. Brazil and Malaysia supported the adoption of guidance on dealing with risk, and recommended the results of risk assessment be shared through the CHM. Many countries highlighted the value of regional cooperation, and cooperation among international instruments and organizations, calling for controlling pathways of IAS introduction.

On Thursday, 9 October, delegates addressed a CRP on the review of work on IAS and considerations for future work. They discussed whether IAS should be referred to as a “serious” hazard to biodiversity, finally agreeing to keep the reference. On a list of items that parties may consider when developing IAS strategies, delegates removed a reference to standardizing labeling for transport of living organisms.

Brazil, with Canada, Mexico and the EU, proposed new text on compiling information from parties, scientific institutions and other relevant organizations on experiences in the use of biological control mechanisms against IAS. The EU, with Switzerland, proposed adding text on: collaboration with IUCN and the Global IAS Information Partnership; the application of appropriate risk assessments; and consideration by the SBSTTA of a synthesis of this information prior to COP 13. Following objections from Brazil, Colombia, Timor-Leste, Malaysia and Mexico, delegates agreed to delete a paragraph requesting a review of the social, cultural and economic impacts of IAS, in particular on women and ILCs. Delegates approved the CRP, as amended.

Delegates then considered a CRP on the management of risks associated with the introduction of alien species as pets, aquarium and terrarium species, and as live bait and live food, including an annex containing guidance on devising and implementing measures to address such risks. Delegates discussed information sharing, and agreed to share the results of risk assessments “through the CHM and other appropriate means.” Delegates approved the draft decision, including annexed guidance, with this and other minor amendments.

Final Decisions: In the decision on review of work on IAS and considerations for future work (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.4), the COP welcomes the establishment of the Global IAS Information Partnership. It calls upon parties to consider, when developing their national or regional IAS strategies: making effective use of communication strategies, tools and approaches; making use of existing guidance on risk analysis, including guidance developed by the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC), the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO); identifying and prioritizing pathways of introduction of IAS; making use of the categorization of pathways; cooperation by sharing information to address IAS introduction via e-commerce; and taking appropriate actions by making use of the full range of measures for early detection, control and/or eradication, including biocontrol, with appropriate risk analysis. The COP requests the Secretariat, subject to the availability of resources, to:

•  facilitate the development of regional projects to manage pathways that have been identified as priorities at the regional level;

•  develop decision-support tools for assessing and evaluating the social, economic and ecological consequences of IAS;

•  explore with relevant partners, including the standard setting bodies recognized by the World Trade Organization (WTO), methods of alerting suppliers and potential buyers to the risk posed by IAS sold via e-commerce; and

•  compile information on experience in the use of biological control agents against IAS, for SBSTTA consideration prior to COP 13.

In the decision on management of risks associated with the introduction of alien species as pets, aquarium and terrarium species, and as live bait and live food (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.5), the COP adopts the annexed voluntary guidance on devising and implementing measures to address the risks associated with such introduction, noting that measures taken under the guidance are to be consistent with applicable national and international obligations. It urges parties to disseminate the guidance widely and promote its use; and requests the Secretariat, in cooperation with CITES and relevant organizations, to explore ways and means to address the risks associated with trade in wildlife introduced as pets, for SBSTTA consideration prior to COP 13.

The annexed guidance includes sections on: objectives and nature; prevention and responsible conduct; risk assessment and management; available measures, including among others measures to prevent escape, of secure confinement, handling and transport, response measures, and safe methods of disposal for live bait and live food; information sharing; and consistency with other international obligations. The guidance is: voluntary and relevant to states, organizations, the industry and consumers, including all actors along the value chain; and intended to be used in conjunction with other guidance, for example the CBD Guiding Principles for the Prevention, Introduction and Mitigation of Impacts of Alien Species that Threaten Ecosystems, Habitats and Species, as well as standards, guidelines and recommendations developed under the IPPC, the OIE, or the Codex Alimentarius Commission and voluntary codes.

GLOBAL STRATEGY ON PLANT CONSERVATION (GSPC)

In WG II, on Wednesday, 8 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/1/Add.2/Rev.1). Many countries supported the draft decision and stressed the need for greater progress on in situ conservation. They called for expanding partnerships, and welcomed progress on development of online flora of all known plants. Uganda, for the African Group, supported by the Arab States and many developing countries, called for allocating resources for capacity building in support of the GSPC. The Philippines urged catalyzing cross-sectoral linkages among agricultural, seed management and health reform policies. IUCN and TRAFFIC called for sustainable sourcing of all plant-based products.

On Thursday, 9 October, delegates considered a CRP. They discussed and eventually rejected the EU’s suggestion to remove mention of the Secretariat’s role in working with Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) and members of the Global Partnership for Plant Conservation (GPPC) to support capacity-building and cooperation activities. Colombia proposed, and delegates agreed, to mention collaboration with the food sector, in addition to the agriculture and health sectors. On encouraging parties, as appropriate, to recognize the CITES Plants Committee and national CITES authorities as lead entities to address flora endangered by international trade, delegates discussed whether to also include mention of “relevant national authorities.”

On Friday, 10 October, the COP adopted a decision on GSPC without further discussion.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.3), the COP welcomes the initial progress on GSPC targets, but notes with concern that most targets may not be achieved on the basis of current progress, and urges parties and invites other governments and relevant organizations to enhance GSPC implementation.

The COP requests the Secretariat to:

•  compile relevant information on opportunities to promote capacity-building activities on botany and related disciplines and activities to support GSPC implementation, and present a synthesis for consideration at SBSTTA prior to COP 13; and

•  in partnership with BGCI, the GPPC and others, continue supporting capacity-building activities on plant conservation, facilitate technical and scientific cooperation and, where feasible, promote cross-sectoral linkages among agricultural, health, food and environmental agencies.

The COP urges parties, members of the GPPC and others to promote communication, coordination and partnerships toward implementation, including through: making improved use of the CHM; pursuing activities identified through the mid-term review of the Strategy and GBO-4 with key stakeholders, dedicated institutions and champions outside the plant conservation community who are critical for the achievement of targets; and providing political, institutional and financial support to partners within the plant conservation community.

The COP encourages parties, as appropriate, to recognize the CITES Plants Committee and relevant national CITES authorities as lead entities for the implementation of GSPC Target 11 (that no species of wild flora is endangered by international trade.)

The COP encourages parties and invites other governments to facilitate and support the development of national plant conservation partnerships involving, where appropriate, ILCs and the widest range of stakeholders, recognizing the important role of women.

The COP encourages parties, other governments and relevant organizations to continue sharing relevant examples and case studies, including those made available by parties through their fifth national reports, the GSPC toolkit and the CHM, and to draw on them when planning and implementing plant conservation, as appropriate.

SYNTHETIC BIOLOGY

In WG II on Wednesday, 8 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decision and documents (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/20, and INF/11 and 12).

Many countries, including Saint Lucia, Canada and China, stressed the need to apply the precautionary approach. Mexico, the Philippines, Bolivia and the CBD Alliance referred to the precautionary principle. The EU said it should be applied in line with previous decisions. Norway cautioned against watering it down in future COP decisions, and identified the need for more information on both positive and negative effects of organisms resulting from synthetic biology. 

Malaysia regarded synthetic biology as “an extension of modern biotechnology,” not to be approved for release into environment, including for field testing and commercial use. With the EU, Brazil opposed any moratorium on new techniques with potential positive impacts on the use of biodiversity. 

Ethiopia, with Singapore, stressed the need for a regulatory framework prior to field testing or release of organisms and products resulting from synthetic biology. Malaysia, with the Philippines, opposed by New Zealand, supported the establishment of a global international legal regulatory framework. The Democratic Republic of the Congo called for building capacities for regulatory frameworks in developing countries. Many developing countries emphasized risks to human health.

The EU, Mexico and Egypt, for the African Group and Arab States, urged consideration of synthetic biology in the context of the Convention and its Protocols. Norway and the EU supported an open-ended online forum, followed by an expert workshop to consider differences and overlaps between genetic engineering and synthetic biology. Canada supported establishing an AHTEG on synthetic biology and proposed specific terms of reference (TOR).

Delegates continued consideration of the issue in a contact group chaired by Andrew Bignell (New Zealand).

On Thursday, 16 October, contact group Chair Bignell presented a CRP and reported that attempts to resolve whether assessment and management procedures and/or regulatory systems to regulate environmental release of synthetic biology products should be based on national, regional “and/or” international frameworks, had been unsuccessful. Egypt, Guinea-Bissau, Brazil, Canada, Ecuador, Japan, Uruguay, the EU, Mexico, Argentina and Cameroon said those systems should be based on national, regional “and/or” international frameworks. Malaysia, the Philippines, Norway, Bolivia, and Antigua and Barbuda preferred national, regional “and” international frameworks. Following informal consultations, delegates agreed to refer to establishing effective risk assessment and management procedures and/or regulatory systems “consistent with Article 3 of the CBD.”

In the closing plenary on Friday, 17 October, Bolivia restated its position that, in accordance with the precautionary principle, there shall be no release of synthetic biology products until regulations to protect Mother Earth are in place. He further stressed that risk assessment and management procedures and/or regulatory systems must be in accordance with national, regional and international frameworks.

Final Decision: In the decision on synthetic biology (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.24), the COP, inter alia: concludes that there is currently insufficient information available to decide whether or not this is a new and emerging issue related to biodiversity; awaits the completion of a robust analysis using the criteria in paragraph 12 of decision IX/29 (criteria for identifying new and emerging issues); and urges parties and invites other governments, to take a precautionary approach and decides to:

•  establish, or have in place, effective risk assessment and management procedures and/or regulatory systems to regulate environmental release of any organisms, components or products resulting from synthetic biology techniques, consistent with CBD Article 3 (no harm principle);

•  approve organisms resulting from synthetic biology techniques for field trials only after appropriate risk assessments have been carried out in accordance with national, regional and/or international frameworks, as appropriate;

•  carry out scientific assessments concerning organisms, components and products resulting from synthetic biology techniques with regard to potential effects on biodiversity, taking into account risks to human health and addressing, as appropriate, and according to national and/or regional legislation, other issues, such as food security and socio-economic considerations with, where appropriate, ILCs’ full participation;

•  encourage the provision of funding for research into synthetic biology risk assessment methodologies and into the positive and negative impacts of synthetic biology on biodiversity, and to promote interdisciplinary research that includes related socio-economic considerations; and

•  cooperate in the development and/or strengthening of human resources and institutional capacities, including methodologies for risk assessments in synthetic biology and its potential impacts on biodiversity, in developing country parties, in particular LDCs, SIDS and parties with economies in transition, including through existing global, regional and national institutions and, as appropriate, by facilitating civil society involvement, whereby their needs for: financial resources; access to and transfer of technology; establishing or strengthening regulatory frameworks; and the management of risks related to the release of synthetic biology products should be taken fully into account.

The COP also: decides, subject to the availability of resources, to establish an AHTEG; invites parties and others to submit to the Secretariat information relevant to the work of the AHTEG as well as on risk assessment measures listed above, including identifying needs for guidance; invites parties, ILCs and others to continue to provide further relevant information; and requests the Secretariat, subject to the availability of financial resources, to:

•  make available the reported information through the CHM and other means;

•  convene a moderated open-ended online forum to support the work of the AHTEG;

• prepare an updated report on the relevant information and to submit it for consideration by the AHTEG; and

•  submit for consideration by the SBSTTA, prior to COP 13, the peer-reviewed reports of the outcomes of these processes.

The annex to the decision contains TOR for the AHTEG on synthetic biology, according to which the AHTEG will, inter alia:

•  identify the similarities and differences between LMOs as defined in the Cartagena Protocol (CP) and synthetic biology products to determine if LMOs derived from synthetic biology fall under the scope of the CP;

•  identify if other national, regional and/or international instruments adequately regulate synthetic biology products in so far as they have an impact on the objectives of the CBD and its Protocols;

•  work towards an operational definition of synthetic biology;

•  identify the potential benefits and risks of synthetic biology products to biodiversity and related human health and socio-economic impacts relevant to the mandate of the CBD and its Protocols;

•  building on the work on risk assessment and risk management undertaken by the CP, compile information on best practices on risk assessment and monitoring regimes currently used by CBD parties and other governments; and

•  identify if the existing arrangements constitute a comprehensive framework to address impacts of synthetic biology products relevant to the objectives of the CBD and its Protocols, in particular threats of significant reduction or loss of biodiversity.

BIODIVERSITY AND CLIMATE CHANGE

In WG II on Wednesday, 8 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decision and documents (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/21, and INF/13 and 15). Brazil, with China, noted that REDD+ is an incentive mechanism under the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and treating it outside this context “creates confusion and hinders implementation.” Many expressed concern over possible duplication of work, saying the UNFCCC is the appropriate venue for discussion of REDD+.

The Philippines, with Turkey, the Republic of Korea and others, supported referring to the Warsaw Framework on REDD+.  Zambia, for the African Group, with Fiji, for Pacific Island States, noted the importance of social and environmental safeguards.

Considering the draft decision, Bolivia, with Cuba, registered their inability to agree to the decision without: the explicit mention of “alternative policy approaches” alongside each mention of REDD+; and spelling out REDD+ instead of using the acronym.

Brazil, with the EU and South Africa, proposed referencing the relevant UNFCCC decision in a footnote, on text concerning the Warsaw Framework for REDD+ and its guidance on the implementation of REDD+ activities. Brazil proposed, and delegates agreed, to include “while also noting the existing policy alternative approaches, such as the joint mitigation and adaptation approaches for the integral and sustainable management of forests,” and a footnote referencing the relevant UNFCCC decision on alternative approaches. The EU, opposed by Bolivia, suggested qualifying this by adding, “without pre-empting the decision of the UNFCCC.” Mexico, supported by the EU, Bolivia and others, amended the EU wording to “in accordance with UNFCCC decisions.” Delegates agreed to spell out the acronym REDD+, and supported a suggestion by Brazil to mention, in a footnote, the relevant UNFCCC decision that defines REDD+ every time REDD+ activities are referenced.

They also agreed to encourage parties to make use of information, in the context of the Warsaw Framework of REDD and alternative policy approaches to results-based forestry, to enhance the achievement of the Aichi targets. With these and other amendments, the CRP was approved.

On the promotion and implementation of ecosystem-based approaches, South Africa proposed, and delegates agreed, to insert reference to “both terrestrial and marine environments.” The EU, opposed by Brazil, proposed reference to climate change mitigation. Japan favored “climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction.” Delegates agreed to refer to “climate change activities and disaster risk reduction.”

Following discussions in plenary, delegates approves the CRP.

Final Decision: In the final decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.28), the COP, welcoming the Executive Secretary’s progress report on information relevant to the application of safeguards for biodiversity in the context of reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation, conservation of forest carbon stocks, sustainable management of forests and enhancement of forest carbon stocks in developing countries, inter alia:

•  urges parties and encourages other governments, relevant organizations and stakeholders to take steps to address all biodiversity-related impacts of climate change highlighted in the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Fifth Assessment report and to further strengthen synergies with relevant work under the UNFCCC;

•  welcomes the Warsaw Framework for REDD+ and the guidance on the implementation of REDD+ activities that it provides, while also noting existing alternative policy approaches, such as joint mitigation and adaptation approaches for the integral and sustainable management of forests, in accordance with UNFCCC decisions;

•  encourages parties to make use of information in the context of the Warsaw Framework for REDD+, and alternative policy approaches for results-based finance, to enhance progress in the achievement of the Aichi targets; and

•  encourages parties and invites others to promote and implement ecosystem-based approaches to climate change related activities and disaster risk reduction, in both terrestrial and marine environments, and to integrate these into their policies and programmes in the context of the Hyogo Framework for Action 2005-2015.

The decision contains a footnote describing REDD+, and others referencing relevant UNFCCC-related decisions.

ECOSYSTEM CONSERVATION AND RESTORATION

In WG II on Wednesday, 8 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decision and documents (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/22, and INF/18 and 19). Many parties described national restoration efforts, and expressed general support for the draft decision.

The Republic of Korea called on the UN to designate 27 February as World National Parks and Protected Areas day, and Japan requested this be noted in the decision. Malaysia, supported by Switzerland, suggested referring to promoting sustainable management practices in rehabilitation and restoration. Bolivia proposed recognizing the contribution of public protected areas (PAs) and community-based approaches to in situ conservation. The EU, with Uganda, highlighted the cumulative benefits of small-scale activities. Uganda said well-tested fast-growing exotic species can be useful in relieving pressure on indigenous ecosystems. The IIFB, supported by Senegal and the Philippines, requested adding to text on supporting IPLCs in their efforts to conserve biodiversity “in their lands, waters and territories.” The Global Youth Biodiversity Network called for the rights of future generations to be respected in decision making.

Canada suggested referring to the contribution of “ecosystem-related” functions and services to sustainable development and poverty eradication. Following some discussion, delegates agreed to, inter alia: welcome the work of the Ramsar Convention and initiatives that support coastal wetland conservation and restoration; consider options to build a “Caring for Coasts” initiative; and include reference to “sustainable management and best practices” in the promotion of ecosystem conservation and restoration. With this and other amendments, delegates approved the CRP.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.15), the COP notes, in the context of the ongoing discussions on the post-2015 development agenda, the contribution of ecosystem conservation and restoration, and related functions and services, to sustainable development and poverty eradication.

It recognizes the contribution of private PAs, in addition to public and indigenous and local community conserved areas (ICCAs), in the conservation of biodiversity, and encourages the private sector to continue its efforts to protect and sustainably manage ecosystems for the conservation of biodiversity.

It notes with concern that, according to GBO-4, not enough progress has been made towards most elements of Aichi Biodiversity Targets 14 (restoration and safeguarding of ecosystems) and Target 15 (restoration of degraded ecosystems).

The COP invites parties and others to, inter alia:

•  develop spatial planning approaches at the landscape and seascape level, to help to reduce habitat loss and promote restoration;

•  promote, where appropriate, holistic and integrated planning for ecosystem conservation and restoration in ICCAs, with the full and effective ILC participation, taking into account customary use and management approaches;

•  promote cross-sectoral approaches, including with the public sector, private sector and civil society, to develop a coherent framework for ecosystem conservation and restoration;

•  promote restoration activities, in particular large-scale restoration activities, noting also the cumulative benefits of small-scale restoration activities that collectively can contribute to biodiversity conservation, climate-change adaptation and mitigation, and reducing desertification, in the context of sustainable development;

•  provide appropriate incentives to promote, in line with national circumstances, sustainable management and best practices in the ecosystem conservation and restoration at national and subnational levels, in the public and private sectors;

•  provide support and incentives, in line with national circumstances, to ILCs in their efforts to conserve biodiversity in ICCAs;

•  develop and strengthen monitoring of ecosystem degradation and restoration, with a view to supporting adaptive management and reporting on progress towards the Aichi targets; and

•  give due attention to both native species and genetic diversity in conservation and restoration activities, while avoiding the introduction, and preventing the spread of, IAS.

The COP invites parties to give due attention to the conservation and restoration of coastal wetlands, and, in this context, welcomes the work of the Ramsar Convention and other initiatives, including options to build a “Caring for Coasts” Initiative, as part of a global movement to restore coastal wetlands.

The COP invites the UN General Assembly to consider declaring 27 February as “World National Parks and Protected Areas Day,” reaffirming the importance of public awareness of the role of PAs and ICCAs.

It also requests the Secretariat, with a view to strengthening synergies and avoiding duplication of work, in consideration of the proposed IPBES thematic assessment on land degradation and restoration, to share all relevant information and results with IPBES, cooperate in the development of next steps, and report on progress to SBSTTA prior to COP 13.

SUSTAINABLE USE: BUSHMEAT AND SUSTAINABLE WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT

This issue was taken up in Working Group II on Wednesday, 8 October, and on Tuesday, 14 October. The Secretariat introduced the draft decision, which parties generally supported. Several delegates emphasized the links between the CBD and CITES, and the role of the Collaborative Partnership on Sustainable Wildlife Management.

The African Group stressed the need for additional funding for the establishment of local and national surveillance systems. The FAO highlighted efforts to mitigate human-wildlife conflicts as bushmeat becomes an increasing source of food in some countries.

Considering the draft decision, the EU, supported by Canada, proposed deleting a paragraph on strengthening financial and technical support to developing countries for national and local traceability, monitoring and control systems, saying this is covered under resource mobilization. Many developing countries opposed this move, including Brazil, China, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Qatar, South Africa and Timor-Leste, noting the paragraph also covers other issues. Cameroon stressed the need for “additional” financial and technical support on bushmeat practices, in view of the Ebola crisis and other diseases transferred from animals to humans. Delegates agreed to maintain the original paragraph. 

On the updating of regulatory systems to “differentiate between subsistence use and illegal harvesting and export of wild species” so as to avoid penalizing subsistence users, the EU and Brazil proposed mentioning “domestic and international trade of specimens of wild species and products.” Guinea-Bissau proposed to avoid penalizing both “the countries and the persons” using wildlife resources for subsistence purposes. Delegates agreed to these changes. Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Bolivia and Iceland opposed the EU and Switzerland’s proposal to refer to “sustainable subsistence.”

On encouraging parties to assess, minimize and mitigate the impacts of illegal hunting “by migrant, seasonal and other non-traditional communities” on subsistence hunting and livelihoods of ILCs, the EU expressed concern that the language was discriminatory, calling instead for language focusing on the action of illegal hunting, rather than the actors. Egypt, supported by Algeria and Sudan, preferred to maintain a reference to such communities, noting that while they are not ILCs, many are poor and may have adopted nomadic practices due to environmental conditions, such as seasonal drought. Delegates accepted Canada’s suggestion to refer to “the impact of illegal hunting on the subsistence hunting and livelihoods of ILCs and on other subsistence users of wildlife resources.” With these and other amendments, delegates approved the draft decision.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.13), the COP, inter alia:

•  invites parties and others to strengthen financial and technical support to developing countries for the establishment and implementation of effective traceability, monitoring and control systems at the national and local levels, and to review, and reform, incentives that might encourage unsustainable consumption of bushmeat;

•  also encourages parties, and invites other governments, to strengthen ILCs’ capacity to exercise their rights and responsibilities in relation to the sustainable management of wildlife; and

•  encourages parties to assess, minimize and mitigate the impacts of illegal hunting on the subsistence hunting and livelihoods of ILCs, and on other subsistence users of wildlife resources; and develop, revise or update their regulatory systems to differentiate between subsistence uses and illegal hunting, and domestic and international trade of specimens of wild species and products, in a mutually supportive manner with CITES and other international obligations, so as to avoid penalizing both the countries and the persons using wildlife resources for subsistence purposes.

BIOFUELS AND BIODIVERSITY

In WG II on Thursday, 9 October, the Secretariat introduced the progress report (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/23) on biofuels and biodiversity. Ethiopia, for the African Group, and others called for maximizing the benefits of biofuels while minimizing their negative impacts. Delegates highlighted the competition of biofuels with food production, and some expressed concern regarding impacts on ILCs. Qatar, with Niger, opposed the development of biofuels, except those using agricultural waste. Tajikistan expressed concerns regarding the impact of biofuel production on genetic resources. Mexico noted the importance of integrated national policies for minimizing the negative impacts of biofuel production on forest systems and forest communities. Guinea-Bissau warned that biofuel production contributes to landlessness and social turbulence in some countries.

The EU welcomed the Secretariat’s work on shared technical definitions. India requested the Secretariat to continue updating the document for peer review at SBSTTA 19. Brazil, with Argentina, highlighted that the Global Bioenergy Partnership has developed a set of sustainability indicators for biofuel production. Guatemala called for international market measures to guide biofuel production. New Zealand said an expanded work programme is not warranted, and that parties are responsible for managing the impacts of production systems within their national borders.

WG II took note of the progress report.

COOPERATION

On Thursday, 9 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decisions and documents (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/24 and Add.1, and INF 22, 23, 25, 40 and 48) in WG II. The draft decision included sections on cooperation with other conventions, stakeholder engagement, biodiversity and tourism, engagement with sub-national and local governments, and engagement with business. Many expressed support for the text on stakeholder engagement and engagement with business.

Cooperation with Other Conventions: Discussion on this issue focused on the way forward on synergies among biodiversity-related conventions, collaborative work with other organizations, and reporting procedures. A Friends of the Chair group met to discuss synergies.

On collaborative work with other organizations, Peru, supported by Brazil, the EU and UNCTAD, proposed further cooperation with UNCTAD’s Biotrade Initiative.

On synergies among biodiversity-related conventions, Canada stated that cooperation requires careful analysis by parties under each convention, with Argentina and China urging respect for the mandate of each convention. The Democratic Republic of the Congo proposed a roadmap on potential synergies. Mexico requested that the synergies experienced under the chemicals and wastes conventions be assessed by the Secretariat, the Bureau or the Biodiversity Liaison Group (BLG). Switzerland suggested the BLG develop a harmonized reporting system to strengthen synergies among the secretariats. With UNPFII and IIFB, he also supported the establishment of a joint working group on synergies among biodiversity-related conventions, including representation from UNEP, meeting back-to-back with the main meetings of the conventions. The EU expressed concern that a working group on synergies would be costly and ineffective, and, opposed by Switzerland, proposed an ad hoc workshop on synergies, with participants from biodiversity-related conventions.

Discussing the draft decision, delegates agreed to establish a regionally-balanced informal advisory group to prepare a workshop on options to enhance synergies and improve efficiency among biodiversity-related conventions, andinvite the BLG to participate in the informal advisory group. The EU proposed deletion of a paragraph requesting the Secretariat to prepare a study on key capacity-building and awareness-raising needs regarding cooperation with other multilateral environmental agreements at the national level. Brazil, supported by the Gambia, opposed this, stressing that finding synergies among biodiversity activities is crucial at both the global and national levels. Delegates agreed to make the request for the study subject to the availability of resources.

Considering the draft decision, delegates agreed, with minor changes, to a proposal by Norway requesting the Secretariat to take into consideration the ongoing review of the International Arrangement on Forests when preparing a study on the ways in which international organizations and secretariats contribute to the Strategic Plan and the Aichi targets of relevance to forests. Delegates then approved the draft decision.

Final Decision: In the final decision (UNEP/​CBD/​COP/​12/​L.27), the COP, inter alia:     

•  decides, subject to the availability of resources, to establish a regionally-balanced informal advisory group, selected by the COP Bureau on the basis of nominations by parties, to prepare, prior to the first meeting of the subsidiary body on implementation (SBI), a workshop on options for a possible roadmap for parties of biodiversity-related conventions to enhance synergies and improve efficiency among them, without prejudice to the specific objectives and recognizing the respective mandates and subject to the availability of resources of these conventions;

•  requests the informal advisory group to consider relevant inputs, including, inter alia, the outcomes arising from the work of the liaison group of the biodiversity-related conventions, and the experience of the chemicals and wastes conventions in improving synergies, and other recent relevant work on synergies;

•  also requests the Secretariat, subject to the availability of resources, to prepare a study on key capacity-building and awareness-raising needs regarding cooperation with other multilateral environmental agreements at the national level as an input for the workshop;

•  calls upon UNCTAD’s BioTrade Initiative to continue strengthening technical support to governments, companies and others to enable them to incorporate biotrade within NBSAPs and in sustainable harvesting practices, as appropriate; and

•  requests the Secretariat, subject to the availability of resources, to prepare a study on the ways in which international organizations and secretariats with substantial programmes on forests are assisting in implementing the Strategic Plan and achieving the Aichi targets of relevance to forests, and invites other members of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests to contribute to the study and report back to a meeting of SBSTTA prior to COP 13 on options for further action to achieve the forest-related Aichi targets, in a mutually supportive manner.

Biodiversity and Tourism: India urged CEPA on sustainable travel choices. China, Egypt and South Africa highlighted ecotourism. Saint Lucia requested support for annual reporting. Delegates then considered and approved a CRP.

Final Decision: In the final decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.23), the COP, inter alia:

•  invites parties and others, in partnership with stakeholders in the tourism industry, including ILCs, to promote CEPA activities for the general public and tourists on sustainable travel choices, and on the use of eco-labels, standards and certification schemes; and

•  requests the Secretariat, subject to the availability of resources, to develop ways and means to facilitate voluntary reporting by parties on the application of the CBD Guidelines on Biodiversity and Tourism Development, and to collaborate with UNEP, the World Tourism Organization, UNESCO and others to help parties to apply these guidelines.

Engagement with Subnational and Local Governments: Cameroon called for financing to enhance local-level synergies among biodiversity-related initiatives. South Africa stressed biodiversity mainstreaming in rural development plans. On incorporating biodiversity considerations into urban, peri-urban and land-use planning and infrastructure, such as “green infrastructure,” delegates agreed to an amendment, proposed by the EU and supported by Brazil, that the qualifier “as appropriate” refer only to green infrastructure, so as to allow countries flexibility when applying this new concept. The CRP was approved with these amendments.

Final Decision:  In the final decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.22), the COP, inter alia:

•  calls on parties to incorporate biodiversity considerations into their urban, peri-urban and land use planning and infrastructure, such as “green infrastructure,” and to strengthen capacities of subnational and local governments to incorporate biodiversity into urban and other spatial planning processes; and

•  encourages subnational and local governments to contribute to the attainment of the Strategic Plan by, among others, integrating biodiversity considerations into plans for sustainable urbanization and land use, including local transport, spatial planning, water and waste management; and prioritizing biodiversity issues by showcasing the positive effects of biodiversity, and ecosystem functions and services on other topics, such as health, renewable energy and livelihoods.

Stakeholder Engagement: On Thursday, 9 October, delegates considered the draft decision, which was supported by many parties. On Thursday, 16 October, delegates approved the draft.

Final Decision: In the final decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.21), the COP, inter alia:

•  calls on parties to effectively engage stakeholders, including youth, in the development and implementation of the new generation of revised NBSAPs, and to support initiatives that seek to promote such participation; and

•  requests the Secretariat, subject to the availability of resources, to provide information on ways to enable inclusive participation of stakeholders in relevant initiatives under the Convention, and on the opportunities, experiences and expertise that stakeholders can provide.

Engagement with Business: On Thursday, 9 October, delegates considered the draft decision, which was supported by many parties. On text requesting that the Secretariat support business initiatives in developing progress reports on biodiversity mainstreaming by business, the EU requested, and delegates agreed, to insert “including by establishing a typology of possible actions.”

On text requesting that the Secretariat compile information and analyze best practices, standards and research on ecosystem functions and services, the EU suggested, and delegated agreed to, inserting also “evaluation of those services.” With these and other minor amendments, delegates approved the draft decision.

Final Decision: In the final decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.25), acknowledging that many companies around the world are not aware of the importance or the benefits of biodiversity or of the positive effects of mainstreaming the values of biodiversity and ecosystem functions and services into their business models and supply chains, the COP, inter alia:

•  invites parties to, among others: work, in conjunction with stakeholders and others to develop innovative mechanisms to support the Global Partnership for Business and Biodiversity and its associated national and regional initiatives; and continue work to create an enabling environment such that businesses, including publicly funded and local community businesses, which could include different actors, can effectively implement the objectives of the Convention and its Protocols;

•  encourages businesses to, among others: include in their reporting frameworks considerations related to biodiversity and ecosystem functions and services; and actively contribute to the resource mobilization strategy of the Convention to support the implementation of the Strategic Plan and the achievement of the Aichi targets; and

•  requests the Secretariat to, among others: enhance, in collaboration with the Global Partnership for Business and Biodiversity, the contribution of the business sector to the achievement of the Aichi targets; and compile information, and analyze best practices, standards and research about biodiversity and ecosystem functions and services, and their valuation, to facilitate assessments of the contributions by business to achieving the Convention objectives and the Aichi targets.

OPERATIONS OF THE CONVENTION

IMPROVING THE EFFICIENCY OF STRUCTURES AND PROCESSES UNDER THE CONVENTION: On Wednesday, 8 October in WG I, the Secretariat introduced the draft decisions and documents addressing organization of concurrent meetings of the COP and COP/MOPs, a subsidiary body on implementation (SBI) to replace the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group on the Review of Implementation of the Convention (WGRI), voluntary peer-review of NBSAPs, retirement of decisions, and the IPBES (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/25 and Add.1-3, and INF/25 and 28).

Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services: On Wednesday, 8 October, the Secretariat introduced a draft decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/1/Add.2/Rev.1) in WG I. Anne Laurigauderie, IPBES Executive Secretary, presented the IPBES work programme. Mexico stressed that SBSTTA is the CBD body to communicate with IPBES. On Friday, 17 October, delegates adopted the draft decision.

Final Decision:In the decision on the IPBES (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.30), the COP decides that the SBSTTA will submit to the COP, for its approval, any requests for the next programme of work of the IPBES, upon which SBSTTA may provide recommendations to the COP on matters within the mandate given to it by the COP. It also decides that SBSTTA may exchange technical information with IPBES, where the subject is within the mandate given to it by the COP. It requests the Secretariat to transmit requests or information to IPBES and prepare a report on the progress of activities in IPBES for consideration by the COP. The decision further requests the Secretariat to:

•  continue collaboration with IPBES in consultation with the SBSTTA Chair;

•  bring to the attention of all relevant focal points under the Convention and its Protocols, draft versions of deliverables of IPBES when they become publicly available for peer review;

•  make available progress in the implementation of the IPBES work programme on through the CHM;

•  make available deliverables of IPBES through the CHM and bring those deliverables to the attention of SBSTTA for the development, as appropriate, of recommendations to the COP; and

•  facilitate the participation of the SBSTTA Chair in the Multidisciplinary Expert Panel of the Platform as an observer.

Concurrent Meetings: This item was introduced on Wednesday, 8 October, as a draft decision, with the understanding that both the COP and the COP/MOP would address it. Many supported the organization of concurrent meetings of the COP and COP/MOPs to improve efficiency. Developing countries stressed developing country participation in concurrent meetings be ensured through a provision in the core budget. Switzerland proposed maintaining flexibility regarding the organization of WG sessions. India highlighted limited time to deal with agenda items at concurrent meetings.

Revised text substituted support for “each eligible party” with support for developing country parties, in particular LDCs and SIDS. Canada, opposed by Cameroon, proposed text on encouraging contributions from “other parties, governments and donors.” Countries agreed to “other governments and donors.” On the NP COP/MOP CRP, delegates decided to adopt the language of the COP CRP on contributions to support full and effective implementation. Both decisions were adopted on Friday, 17 October, in a joint plenary session.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.11), the COP:

•  takes note of: recommendation 5/2 of WGRI as regards integrated approaches to the implementation of the Convention to improve efficiencies; decision BS-VII/9 of the Cartagena COP/MOP on Biosafety;

•  decides to hold its future ordinary meetings within a two-week period that also includes the meetings of the Cartagena Protocol COP/MOP, as well as the Nagoya Protocol COP/MOP; and

•  requests the Secretariat to prepare a preliminary draft of the organization of work for these meetings on integrated approaches to the Convention and its Protocols.

Subsidiary Body on Implementation (SBI): This agenda item was introduced on Wednesday, 15 October, in WG I. Many supported the establishment of an SBI to replace the WGRI. South Africa called for greater clarity regarding the terms of reference. Canada stressed the need to adopt rules of procedure.

Final Decision: In this decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.10), the COP, inter alia, decides:

•  to establish a SBI to replace the WGRI;

•  that, in line with paragraph 5 of rule 26 of the rules of procedure for the meetings of the COP, the rules of procedure for the meetings of the COP apply, mutatis mutandis, to the meetings of the SBI with the exception of rule 18, which will not apply;

•  the SBI should meet in each intersessional period; and

•  to make arrangements for a meeting of the SBI to be held prior to COP 13.

Other Matters:This item was introduced on Wednesday, 15 October in WG I. Discussions included: developing a methodology for a voluntary peer-review process on NBSAPs and reporting to the SBI. Delegates approved a COP CRP with a minor amendment, and the joint plenary adopted the decision on Friday, 17 October.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.31), the COP notes the process to improve the operations of the SBSTTA to enable it to fulfil its mandate more efficiently, and requests the Secretariat to continue to explore and implement ways to improve its efficiency, drawing on views of parties and lessons learned from its 17th and 18th meetings. The COP also requests the Secretariat toprepare proposals for the sixth national report to facilitate streamlined reporting on issues covered by the Convention and its Protocols.

Retirement of Decisions: This agenda item was introduced on Wednesday, 8 October, in WG I. India supported the creation of an online tool to monitor retirement of decisions, referencing CITES as a useful example. On Friday, 17 October, delegates adopted the draft decision.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.6), the COP:

•  decides to discontinue the current approach for the retirement of decisions and to replace the exercise by a new approach in a manner that supports implementation and creates a good basis for the preparation and adoption of new decisions;

•  also decides to refocus the exercise of retiring decisions, using an online tracking tool to be developed and maintained in the CHM, to support review of existing decisions; and

•  to prepare a summary of the information contained in the online decision tracking tool and make this available to parties.

 MULTI-YEAR PROGRAMME OF WORK OF THE COP UP TO 2020 (MYPOW): The Secretariat introduced the draft decision and documentation (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/26 and INF/35) on Thursday, 9 October, in WG I. Norway proposed considering the IPBES report. South Africa, for the African Group, suggested reviewing the effectiveness of holding concurrent meetings. China proposed addressing ways to enhance the implementation of CBD Article 12 (research and training). Brazil called for a review of resource mobilization targets at COP 13. Mexico and Uruguay said COP 13 should review the Pyeongchang Roadmap and other COP 12 decisions. Japan called for prioritizing review of the 2015 Aichi targets. Bolivia suggested the issue on biodiversity mainstreaming specify the sectors of agriculture, forests and fisheries, and approaches to living well in harmony with Mother Earth. The EU stressed biodiversity mainstreaming through, inter alia, legislation and national accounting. Uruguay said COP 13 should review the interaction between the Convention and its Protocols. SEARICE called for a focus on agricultural biodiversity.

Discussions focused on a list of strategic issues proposed for consideration at COP 13. The EU said the list should not be sector-specific and asked to delete references to agriculture, forests and fisheries. Rather than noting Aichi targets, delegates agreed to note targets that are to be achieved by 2015, and to also note that GBO-4 identifies targets on which significant progress has not been made. Brazil, opposed by the EU, requested new text asking COP 13 to review progress towards resource mobilization targets. The EU opposed a proposal by Canada to delete language on “the determination of funding needs to inform the GEF-7 replenishment” from the list of issues to be considered by COP 13. A Friends of the Chair group convened to continue discussions and submitted a revised draft version to WG I. Delegates agreed to a compromise by Brazil to delete bracketed text on targets for resource mobilization proposed for consideration at COP 13, on the condition that brackets were removed from resource mobilization in the list of issues to be addressed at COP 15. The compromise text on issues for COP 15 removed reference to an updated strategy for resource mobilization but retained reference to resource mobilization itself.

Bolivia and Brazil, supported by Switzerland, the Philippines, Costa Rica and Norway, called for the reintroduction of agriculture, forestry and fisheries into the list of strategic actions for mainstreaming and integrating biodiversity to be considered by COP 13.

Delegates, opposed by Bolivia, agreed to use living in harmony with nature, in place of Mother Earth, in the list of issues proposed for COP 14. Delegates then approved the draft decision.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.18), the COP:

•  reaffirms the decision that the COP shall review progress on the implementation of the Strategic Plan at each of its meetings to 2020;

•  decides to update the MYPOW for the COP according to the list of issues contained in the annex to the decision; and

•  decides to address standing items at each of its meetings consistent with earlier decisions, as well as other issues arising from the COP in relation to particular programmes of work and cross-cutting issues.

BUDGET FOR THE BIENNIUM 2015-2016: On Monday, 6 October, Executive Secretary Dias reported on the administration of the Convention, the trust funds and the budget for the biennium 2015-2016 (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/7, 27, 27/Add.1 and INF/36). Following a brief presentation of five budget scenarios, a budget group chaired by Spencer Thomas (Grenada) was established.

On Friday, 10 October, COP 12 heard a progress report from Chair Thomas. Highlighting the entry into force of the NP and the plan to hold concurrent meetings as new challenges, he noted that “this is not a typical budget group deliberation,” and underscored, as new challenges, the entry into force of the NP and the plan to hold concurrent meetings. On Tuesday, 15 October, COP 12 heard another progress report from Chair Thomas, and plenary adopted the draft decision without amendment.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.34), the COP regrets that the in-depth functional review of the Secretariat was not completed in time, and requests the Secretariat to submit the final report of the review in time for discussion at the first meeting of the SBI. It authorizes the Executive Secretary to fill the post of the Deputy Executive Secretary as soon as possible, and authorizes, on an exceptional basis, adjustment of the staffing levels, numbers and structure of the Secretariat in the light of the continuing outputs of the functional review. It decides to increase the working capital reserve to a level of 7.5% of the core programme budget expenditure, and that this reserve should also be available for the NP Trust Fund until its own reserve has been built up or by 31 December 2016, at the latest.

The COP accepts the request from the CP COP/MOP to hold COP meetings concurrently with COP/MOPs; reaffirms the importance of full and active participation of developing countries in these meetings; and notes with concern that participation has been adversely affected by the lack of predictable and sustainable funding. The COP also decides to consider at COP 13 the implications for the Convention and its Protocols of the ongoing debate in UNEP on the relationship between UNEP and the Conventions for which the UNEP Executive Director provides the functions of the Secretariat.

The COP approves a core programme budget of $14,472,500 for 2015 and of $14,153,800 for 2016 for, inter alia: office of the Executive Secretary; science, assessment and monitoring; ABS/Nagoya Protocol; mainstreaming, partnerships and outreach; technical support and implementation; and resource management and conference services. Other tables include indicative Secretariat staffing requirements, and resource requirements for additional voluntary contributions in support of approved activities for the biennium.

NAGOYA PROTOCOL COP/MOP 1 REPORT

The first session of the COP serving as the MOP to the Nagoya Protocol convened on Monday, 13 October 2014. On behalf of COP 12 President Yoon Seong-kyu, Jae Chun Choe, President, National Institute of Ecology, Republic of Korea, announced the entry into force of the NP on 12 October 2014. Delegates elected Hem Pande, India, representing Minister Prakash Javadekar, Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change as NP COP/MOP 1 Chair, in place of President Yoon Seong-kyu, as the Republic of Korea is not yet a party to the NP.

Chair Pande congratulated governments that have ratified the NP and highlighted items that require further consideration, including compliance, efficiency of structures and processes, and budget.

CBD Executive Secretary Braulio Dias said the NP’s entry into force constitutes a milestone not only for the CBD, but also in the history of global governance for sustainable development. He highlighted ongoing work on capacity building, and the development of the ABS clearing house (ABS-CH).

On behalf of UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner, Elizabeth Mrema highlighted that the NP entered into force with 54 ratifications on 12 October, well in advance of the 2015 deadline for Aichi Target 16. She noted ongoing work towards ratification, accession and implementation of the NP.

ORGANIZATIONAL MATTERS: Delegates adopted the agenda (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/1 and Add.1) and rules of procedure. The Secretariat introduced a compilation of draft decisions (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/1/Add.2). The regional groups nominated substitutes for members of the COP/MOP 1 Bureau representing non-parties to the NP. Albania replaced Bosnia and Herzegovina; Belarus replaced Georgia; the EU replaced the UK; Guyana replaced Grenada; and Indonesia replaced Thailand. The COP/MOP 1 Bureau thus comprised: Elvana Ramaj (Albania); Natalya Minchenko (Belarus); Eleni Marama Rova Tokaduadua (Fiji) as Rapporteur; Indarjit Ramdass (Guyana); Antung Deddy Radiansyah (Indonesia); Boukar Attari (Niger); Tone Solhaug (Norway); María Luisa del Río Mispireta (Peru); Hugo Schally (EU); and Francis Ogwal (Uganda).

Plenary also elected outstanding substitutes to serve on the COP/MOP 2 Bureau. Switzerland replaced Australia; India replaced Japan; Guyana replaced Saint Kitts and Nevis; Syria replaced Saudi Arabia; and Albania replaced Bosnia and Herzegovina. The COP/MOP 2 Bureau thus comprises: Elvana Ramaj (Albania); Natalya Minchenko (Belarus); Mike Ipanga Mwaku (Democratic Republic of the Congo); Mette Gervin Damsgaard (Denmark); Indarjit Ramdass (Guyana); Hem Pande (India); María Luisa del Río Mispireta (Peru); Skumsa Mancotywa (South Africa); Andreas Obrecht (Switzerland); and Belal K. Al-Hayek (Syrian Arab Republic).

On the organization of work, Chair Pande proposed, and delegates agreed, that CBD COP 12 WGs I and II will serve as the WGs for NP COP/MOP 1, to facilitate close proximity between the Convention and the NP.

ICNP Co-Chair Janet Lowe reported on the work of the ICNP, emphasizing that the ICNP has completed its work and “ceases to exist,” reached consensus on many issues, and forwarded a number of recommendations for adoption by COP/MOP 1.

EXCHANGE OF VIEWS ON THE STATUS OF THE PROTOCOL

Many countries welcomed the NP’s entry into force. Uganda, for the African Group, and South Africa, for the LMMCs, stressed the need for adequate and predictable financial resources. Indonesia, for Asia-Pacific, highlighted the importance of information sharing, innovation, adequate financial resources and mainstreaming biodiversity into national policies.

The EU highlighted its regulation of NP compliance measures for users; underscored stakeholder participation; and, with the African Group and others, supported the ABS Capacity Development Initiative.

Uganda, for the African Group, underlined the importance of a global multilateral benefit-sharing mechanism, and urged parties to agree on a pilot phase of the mechanism to be initiated at NP COP/MOP 1. 

Belarus, for CEE, called for GEF assistance through the NP Implementation Fund. Stressing the need to incorporate non-market-based approaches, Peru, for GRULAC, highlighted the NP’s potential to support sustainable development, and deal with food security, health and adaptation to climate change. Micronesia highlighted the SAMOA Pathway, the outcome of the Third International Conference on SIDS. IIFB emphasized, inter alia: PIC in access to genetic resources and TK; and equitable sharing of monetary and non-monetary benefits in accordance with mutually agreed terms.

ABS CLEARING HOUSE AND INFORMATION-SHARING

This issue (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/2, UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/2/Add.1 and UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/INF/4, INF/6, INF/8 and INF/9) was first addressed on Monday, 13 October, in WG I. Delegates discussed the matter subsequently on Wednesday, October 15 in a Friends of the Chair Group chaired by Gaute Voigt-Hanssen (Norway), and in WG I on Thursday, 16 October.

Many delegates supported the draft decision and the establishment of an informal advisory committee (IAC) to assist the Secretariat with ABS-CH implementation. Several delegates emphasized the need for a clear distinction between parties and non-parties, with only parties able to register for internationally recognized certificates of compliance. Switzerland suggested review of the format and modalities at COP/MOP 2. On ILCs, the EU, supported by Guatemala, together with the Democratic Republic of Congo and Canada as observers, said the designation of competent authorities and the specific roles of ILCs are subject to national arrangements.

Views diverged on referencing specific CBD articles in the context of reporting. One delegate called for emphasizing the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources, explaining this to be the foundation on which the NP was built. Calling for balance and consistency, another delegate suggested noting facilitating access to genetic resources by other parties. They decided to refer to CBD Articles 26 (reporting) and15 (access to genetic resources).

Final Decision: In its decision(UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.8),the COP/MOP, inter alia:

•  decides to establish an IAC in order to assist the Executive Secretary with the implementation of the ABS-CH and to provide technical guidance with respect to the resolution of technical and practical issues arising from the ongoing development of the ABS-CH. The IAC shall be composed of 15 experts, primarily from parties, and selected on the basis of nominations provided by parties taking into account regional balance, relevant experience and engagement in the ABS-CH;

•  decides that the IAC will hold at least one meeting in the coming intersessional period, as well as informal online discussions as needed, and address technical issues related to feedback received, including issues related to the internationally recognized certificate of compliance and checkpoint communiqué, and report on the outcomes of its work to COP/MOP 2;

•  adopts the modalities of operation of the ABS-CH annexed to the decision and decides to consider the intervals to review the implementation and operation of the ABS-CH at COP/MOP 2;

•  calls upon parties and invites non-parties to designate a national focal point, one or more competent national authorities, one publishing authority nominated by the national focal point on ABS and, if needed, one or more national authorized users for the ABS-CH designated by the publishing authority; and

•  urges parties to make available to the ABS-CH all mandatory information in accordance with the NP as soon as possible and to continue providing feedback to the Executive Secretary on the implementation and operation of the ABS-CH.

The COP/MOP requests the Executive Secretary to, inter alia:

•  refine the modalities of operation, taking into account progress made, the advice given by the IAC, and feedback received on the implementation and operation of the ABS-CH, in particular that of parties, for the consideration by COP/MOP 2;

•  implement the ABS-CH, in line with available resources, and in accordance with the modalities of operation and feedback received, in particular that of parties;

•  promote the use of the ABS-CH for supporting capacity building for the implementation of the Protocol; and

•  prepare a report on progress on the implementation and operation of the ABS-CH and make available information on operational costs, including funding and additional resource requirements, as well as on collaboration with relevant instruments and organizations for the exchange of relevant data for consideration by COP/MOP 2.

The annex to the decision contains the Modalities of Operation of the ABS-CH, including a section on its administration by the Secretariat and the role of parties and non-parties with respect to the exchange of information through the ABS-CH.

MONITORING AND REPORTING

This item was considered in WG I. On Monday, 13 October, the Secretariat introduced the document (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/3). Mexico suggested parties and non-parties provide national reports to share challenges and solutions on NP implementation. Recalling NP Article 29 (monitoring and reporting), South Africa and Sudan emphasized that only parties should be invited to submit reports. Many parties stressed the need for financial and technical support for preparing reports. Switzerland suggested further review of the format at NP COP/MOP 2. Egypt, for the Arab States, called for monitoring progress. Benin suggested that cases of non-compliance be clearly identified for full transparency. Many parties cautioned against duplication of efforts.

On Thursday, 16 October, the EU proposed, and parties agreed, to link the interim national report on the NP implementation to the ABS-CH by providing an additional option in the questionnaire. On a question addressing the provision of information referred to in NP Article 17.1 (monitoring the utilization of genetic resources) to relevant national authorities of the party providing PIC and to the ABS-CH, the EU suggested successfully the inclusion of a third option, other than yes or no, covering cases where confidentiality leads to direct contact with the country providing genetic resources. With these amendments, the CRP was approved.

Final Decision: In the decision on measures to assist in capacity building and capacity development (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.10), the COP/MOP agrees to the guidelines and format for submission of the interim national report on the implementation of the NP, and requests the Secretariat to make the guidelines and format available through the ABS-CH. It also requests parties to submit an interim national report on the implementation of their obligations to the NP, and further request the Secretariat to consolidate the information in those reports for consideration at COP/MOP 3.

The format for the interim national report appears in an annex, which is intended to minimize the reporting burden on countries; contribute to the assessment and review of the effectiveness of the NP in the context of NP Article 31; and identify challenges and difficulties in implementing the NP.

COMPLIANCE

On Monday, 6 October, the COP plenary took note of the report of the ICNP and a status report on the NP (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/6 and 8/Rev.1); and established a contact group on compliance. The contact group, co-chaired by Kaspar Sollberger (Switzerland) and David Hafashimana (Uganda), held several meetings from 9-16 October.

Delegates considered, inter alia: the composition of the compliance committee, in particular regarding participation of ILC representatives; triggering of the compliance procedures, in particular regarding triggers by the Secretariat or the committee itself, the public and ILCs; and a proposed ombudsman. Noting that the committee should deal with compliance with the Protocol, not domestic law, delegates agreed that text specifying that the committee shall not consider questions related to mutually agreed terms, or characterization and documentation of plant genetic resources are unnecessary.

On the composition of the compliance committee and ILCs’ participation in it, delegates considered whether: one or two ILC representatives would be able to serve on the committee; they would be self-nominated or nominated by parties; and they would serve as observers, members or non-voting members. Several parties said ILCs should be differentiated from regular observers. Delegates agreed that two ILC representatives nominated by ILCs, at least one of them coming from a developing country, would serve as observers and would be entitled to participate in the deliberations of the committee, except in the taking of decisions.

Regarding triggers, delegates agreed that the committee will be able to examine a situation where a party fails to submit its national report or when a party is faced with difficulties complying with its obligations under the NP. 

Delegates also considered whether the committee could receive submissions relating to issues of compliance or non-compliance from ILCs and whether such submissions would need to be supported by the party in whose national territory they are located. They agreed that the Secretariat shall review information received from ILCs against the information received from the party concerned.

The group considered the establishment of an ombudsman to assist developing countries and ILCs in identifying instances of non-compliance. A group of developing countries supported this option, and several developed countries rejected it. Delegates agreed not to include in compliance procedures and mechanisms any provision for an ombudsman. Delegates discussed the possibility of commissioning a study on the modalities of a possible ABS ombudsman, eventually agreeing to consider the need for a possible flexible mechanism to assist developing countries and ILCs in addressing compliance challenges.

Delegates approved the CRP on cooperative procedures and institutional mechanisms to promote compliance with the NP and to address cases of non-compliance without discussion.

On Friday, 17 October, plenary elected nominees from regional groups and ILCs as Compliance Committee members and alternate members, ILC representatives serving as observers: Ayman Tharwat Abdel Aziz (Egypt), Naritiana Rakotoniaina Ranaivoson (Madagascar), Christine Echookit Akello (Uganda) and alternate Betty Kauna Schroeder (Namibia) from the African Group; Luther Rangreji (India), Clark Peteru (Samoa) and Achmad Gusman Catur Siswandi (Indonesia) from the Asia-Pacific; Kaspar Sollberger (Switzerland), Alejandro Lago Candeira (Spain), Helge Elisabeth Zeitler (EU) and alternate Gaute Voigt-Hanssen (Norway) from the Western European and Others Group; Norma Munguía Aldaraca (Mexico), Andrés Valladolid (Peru) and Indarjit Ramdass (Guyana) from GRULAC; Elena Makeyeva (Belarus), Elvana Ramaj (Albania), Elzbieta Martyniuk (Poland) and alternate Dilovarsho Dustov (Tajikistan) from CEE; and Preston Hardison (Tulalip Tribes), Jennifer Corpuz (Tebtebba) and alternate Onel Masardule (Forest Peoples Programme) from ILCs. Outstanding nominations of alternate members will be submitted to the Secretariat.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.11), the COP/MOP, inter alia: decides to adopt cooperative procedures and institutional mechanisms set out in an annex to the decision to promote compliance with the NP and to address cases of non-compliance, and to establish the Compliance Committee; and requests the Secretariat to arrange for at least one meeting of the Compliance Committee to be held before COP/MOP 2 to:

•  develop rules of procedure;

•  identify and consider the need for and modalities of support, including possibly through a flexible mechanism to provide advice or assistance to parties, in particular developing country parties, and, where appropriate and applicable, ILCs, to address compliance challenges; and

•  submit recommendations to NP COP/MOP 2 on the outcomes of its deliberations.

The annex to the decision sets out compliance procedures and mechanisms and consists of seven sections.

Objectives, nature and underlying principles: The objective of the compliance procedures and mechanisms is to promote compliance with NP provisions and address cases of non-compliance. The compliance procedures and mechanisms shall be non-adversarial, cooperative, simple, expeditious, advisory, facilitative, flexible and cost-effective. Their operation shall be guided by the principles of fairness, due process, rule of law, non-discrimination, transparency, accountability, predictability, and will pay particular attention to the needs of developing country parties, especially LDCs, SIDS and parties with economies in transition.

Institutional mechanisms: The Committee shall consist of 15 regional representatives nominated by parties, and those could include ILC representatives. In addition, two ILC representatives, at least one from a developing country, nominated by ILCs, shall serve as observers and shall be entitled to participate in the deliberations of the Committee, except in the taking of decisions. Each regional group and ILCs should also provide an alternate member. Committee members as well as ILC representatives shall have recognized competence, including technical, legal or scientific expertise. The Committee shall meet at least once in each intersessional period and may hold additional meetings. It shall develop and submit its rules of procedure, including those on confidentiality and conflict of interest, to the NP COP/MOP for consideration and approval. The Committee shall make every effort to reach agreement on all matters of substance by consensus; if all efforts to reach consensus have been exhausted and no agreement has been reached, any decision shall, as a last resort, be taken by a three-quarters majority of the members present and voting or by eight members, whichever is greater.

Functions of the Committee: In performing its functions, the Committee may consult with the compliance committees of other agreements to share experience on compliance issues and options for their resolution. The Committee shall submit its reports, including recommendations with regard to the discharge of its functions, to the next COP/MOP for consideration and appropriate action.

Procedures: The Committee shall receive submissions relating to issues of compliance and non-compliance from: any party with respect to itself; any party with respect to another party; and the NP COP/MOP. The Committee may decide not to consider any submission that is de minimis or manifestly ill-founded. The Committee may also examine a situation where a party fails to submit its national report, or where information submitted indicates that the party concerned is faced with difficulties complying with its obligations under the NP. Such information may be received through a national report, from the ABS-CH or from the Secretariat. The Secretariat shall review information received from ILCs against the information received from the party concerned, and will only transmit issues to the Committee that have not been resolved. Additionally, the Committee may examine systemic issues of general non-compliance that come to its attention.

Information for and consultation by the Committee after the triggering of the procedures: The Committee may: seek, receive and consider information from relevant sources, including from affected ILCs; seek advice from independent experts, including, in particular where ILCs are directly affected, from an ILC expert; and undertake, upon invitation of the party concerned, information gathering in the territory of that party.

Measures to promote compliance and address cases of non-compliance: In considering the measures, the Committee shall take into account: the party’s capacity to comply; special needs of developing country parties, in particular LDCs, SIDS and parties with economies in transition; and such factors as the cause, type, degree and frequency of non-compliance. The Committee may: offer advice or facilitate assistance to the party concerned; request or assist the party to develop a compliance action plan; and invite the party to submit progress reports on its efforts to comply with its obligations. In addition, the NP COP/MOP, upon the recommendations of the Committee, may also facilitate access to financial and technical assistance, technology transfer, training and other capacity-building measures; issue a written caution, statement of concern or a declaration of non-compliance; and decide on any other measure in accordance with NP Article 26(4) (promoting effective implementation) and the applicable rules of international law, bearing in mind the need for serious measures in cases of grave or repeated non-compliance.

Review of procedures and mechanisms: The NP COP/MOP shall undertake the review of the effectiveness of these procedures and mechanisms under NP Article 31 (assessment and review) and take appropriate action.

MODEL CONTRACTUAL CLAUSES AND CODES OF CONDUCT, GUIDELINES AND BEST PRACTICES (ARTICLES 19 AND 20)

This issue was considered in WG II on 13 and 14 October. WG II Chair Mispireta introduced, and many countries supported, the draft decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/1/Add.2). South Africa, supported by Uganda, Ethiopia, for the African Group, and others, proposed encouraging “parties, other governments, international organizations and ILCs” to update tools relevant to NP Articles 19 and 20 that had been developed prior to the NP. Considering a CRP, Canada suggested, and parties agreed, that the tools relevant to Articles 19 and 20 be updated “where appropriate.” Brazil suggested, and parties agreed, to take stock of the use of sectoral and cross-sectoral model contractual clauses, and voluntary codes of conduct, including ILC protocols. With these amendments, parties approved the CRP.

On Tuesday, 14 October, the COP/MOP adopted the decision, without amendment.

Final Decision: In the final decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.5), the COP/MOP, inter alia:

•  encourages parties and others, including ILCs and relevant stakeholders, to: submit tools developed under Articles 19 and 20 of the Nagoya Protocol to the ABS CH; and update tools relevant to Articles 19 and 20 of the NP that were developed prior to the NP; and

•  decides to take stock of the use of sectoral and cross-sectoral model contractual clauses, voluntary codes of conduct, guidelines and best practices and/or standards in relation to ABS four years following the NP’s entry into force and in conjunction with the first assessment and review of the NP.

COOPERATION

This item was considered in WG II. On Monday, 13 October, the Secretariat introduced the documentation on cooperation with other conventions, international organizations and initiatives (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/6 and INF/5). The EU stressed the importance of coordination of work under the CBD, NP and other instruments, including under WIPO.

Indonesia requested that the Secretariat facilitate consultation between parties and relevant international institutions regarding international trade standards, plant genetic resources for food and agriculture, and the law of the sea.

The Third World Network invited delegates to consider the WHO’s activities on sharing vaccines. Delegates agreed that a decision was not necessary on the item and noted cooperation activities that have taken place in the report of the meeting.

CAPACITY BUILDING

On Tuesday, 14 October, WG I considered a draft decision on capacity building (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/1/Add.2). Many parties supported it and provided examples of their national capacity-building efforts. Mexico stressed lessons learned and sharing of experiences. Uruguay focused on awareness raising to build capacities across different sectors. Peru said that capacity-building activities should include a cultural dimension with regard to ILCs. IUCN called for synergies in resource allocation among different objectives. The Comoros suggested gender issues be taken into account.

Belarus underlined regional and sub-regional activities and, with Norway, India and Uruguay, the need for additional financial and technical support for effective implementation. Norway noted that the framework should be voluntary and flexible, and involve a broad range of stakeholders. The EU said the ABS-CH is interconnected with the CHM, and may constitute a useful tool to share needs, experiences and opportunities in a bottom-up approach.

On Wednesday, 15 October, delegates considered a CRP. Mexico, with Peru, proposed the deletion of a separate paragraph on providing information through the ABS-CH about holistic and integrated approaches to NP implementation. They suggested instead, and parties agreed to, the inclusion of non-market-based approaches when addressing general information provided through the ABS-CH. Mexico, supported by Peru, Guatemala and Egypt, but opposed by the EU and Switzerland, proposed deleting references to the ITPGR. Guatemala requested a paragraph on capacity-building activities under GEF priority areas.

On Thursday, 16 October, delegates agreed to call on parties to other relevant international instruments to assist in capacity-building measures, rather than calling on parties to the ITPGR to facilitate implementation of the two instruments.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.6) on measures to assist in capacity building and capacity development (Article 22), the COP/MOP adopts the strategic framework for capacity building and development to support the effective implementation of the NP in a decision annex; invites parties, other governments, ILCs and relevant organizations to develop and implement capacity-building and development activities; and calls on parties that are also parties to other international instruments relevant to the NP to ensure that measures taken to assist in capacity building are consistent and mutually supportive.

Annex I on the strategic framework presents:

•  guiding principles and approaches that are demand-driven, based on needs identified through national self-assessments, to ensure national ownership, and the full involvement of ILCs and relevant stakeholders;

•  purpose and objectives for the framework, including capacity for implementation and compliance with the NP, negotiation of mutually agreed terms, and development of endogenous research;

•  guidelines for implementing the framework, including roles, responsibilities, resources and practical activities;

•  coordination and cooperation with forums and other networks, parties and relevant organizations; and

•  monitoring and review of the overall progress made at different levels and identify the gaps and areas that might require additional intervention.

A second annex lists the terms of reference for an IAC established under the decision.

AWARENESS RAISING

On Tuesday, 14 October, WG I considered a draft decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/1/Add.2). Many parties, including Switzerland, Benin, Fiji and the Gambia, welcomed the draft decision. Mexico, Belarus, Uruguay, Burkina Faso and India supported the awareness-raising strategy in the decision annex. The EU, Sudan and Benin emphasized the need to tailor awareness-raising activities, mentioning local, subnational, national, and regional circumstances. Bhutan, Belarus, Mexico, India, Switzerland and Guatemala said resource mobilization is needed for an effective awareness-raising strategy. Sudan and the IIFB said the strategy should be directed at ILCs. Tanzania urged considering domestic laws and local circumstances. The UNPFII said the NP will produce greater incentives to include ILCs in awareness-raising efforts.

On Thursday, 16 October, delegates decided to move a paragraph inviting the GEF to prioritize activities related to the implementing awareness-raising strategy for early action on Article 21 of the Protocol to a separate CRP on the GEF.

Final Decision:In the decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.7) on measures to raise awareness of the importance of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge (Article 21), the COP/MOP adopts the awareness-raising strategy for the Nagoya Protocol contained in the decision annex. The strategy aims at providing a systematic and coherent approach to assist parties in the implementation of Article 21, recognizing the need to link activities related to Article 21 to other capacity-development activities under the Nagoya Protocol, under the programme of work for CEPA, and other outreach initiatives of the CBD, such as the United Nations Decade on Biodiversity.

The strategy presents four priority activities:

•  communications situation analysis and the development of needs-based awareness-raising strategies at national, regional and subregional levels;

•  creation of toolkit and awareness-raising materials; and

•  train communicators and engage target groups; evaluation and feedback.

The annex includes a table denoting operational objectives, expected outcomes, indicators, role of the Secretariat, activities and actors to guide each of the four activities in the strategy.

The decision also discusses resource requirements for the implementation of the awareness-raising strategy.

GLOBAL MULTILATERAL BENEFIT-SHARING MECHANISM (GMBSM)

The Secretariat introduced a draft decision on Monday, 13 October. Indonesia requested that the Secretariat coordinate closely with similar mechanisms, such as those under the ITPGR, and on marine genetic resources beyond national jurisdiction.

Egypt, with others, called for deleting “subject to availability of funding” with regard to a proposed study and a meeting of an expert group. The EU argued for keeping this reference, saying the ongoing budget discussions should not be pre-empted.

South Africa called for the establishment of a pilot phase for the GMBSM, noting that such a mechanism will help address situations where it is not possible for PIC and mutually agreed terms to be granted.

A contact group met through the week to produce draft text. The decision was adopted in the joint closing plenary.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.9), the COP/MOP:

•  invites parties and others, including ILCs, and relevant stakeholders to submit to the Secretariat views on: situations that may support the need for a GMBSM that are not covered under the bilateral approach; possible modalities for a GMBSM as well as information regarding the implications of different scenarios on these modalities; and areas requiring further consideration, including reflections on any experiences gained working towards the implementation of the NP.

•  requests that the Secretariat prepare a synthesis of these views and to commission a study on the experiences gained with the development and implementation of the NP and other multilateral mechanisms; and potential relevance of ongoing work undertaken by other processes, including case studies in relation to ex situ and in situ genetic resources, TK associated with genetic resources, and transboundary situations; and

•  to convene, subject to the availability of funds, a meeting of a regionally balanced expert group to review the synthesis of views and the study.

GUIDANCE TO THE FINANCIAL MECHANISM

On Monday, 13 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decision and relevant documentation (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/4 and UNEP/CBD/COP/12/14/Add.1). The EU, with Switzerland, highlighted the need for targeted strategic guidance to the GEF. Switzerland, the EU and Norway, opposed by Mexico, proposed deleting: a recommendation for a separate GEF window for ABS activities; and a paragraph stating that current guidance supersedes all previous guidance to the financial mechanism related to ABS.

Switzerland, with Norway, suggested that the contact group on the financial mechanism and resource mobilization serve both COP 12 and NP COP/MOP 1. The contact group met 10 times to address the financial mechanism, both with respect to the Convention and the NP. Regarding the NP, discussions focused on the transitional clause in the eligibility criteria for funding under the financial mechanism, in particular with respect to expressed political commitment to become a party to the NP, accompanied by indicative activities and expected milestones.

On Friday, 17 October, contact group Co-Chair Francis Ogwal reported that consensus has been reached. Delegates then considered a CRP and approved it with minor amendments. 

Final Decisions: In the decision on matters related to the financial mechanism (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.12), the COP/MOP takes note of the memorandum of understanding between the COP and the GEF Council adopted in decision III/8 and confirms that the operational arrangements outlined in the memorandum of understanding shall apply, mutatis mutandis, to the Protocol. It recommends that the COP encourage the Secretariats of the Convention and the GEF to exchange information and consult on a regular basis with a view to facilitating the effectiveness of the financial mechanism in assisting parties to implement the Protocol.

Regarding guidance to the financial mechanism, the COP/MOP recommends that the COP consider integrating into its overall guidance to the financial mechanism requests to the GEF to: support activities contained in the guidance that the COP provided to the GEF in its decision XI/5, Annex, Appendix 1; make financial resources available, with a view to assisting eligible parties in preparing their national reports; and support activities related to implementing the awareness-raising strategy for early action on NP Article 21. The COP/MOP further decides that all developing countries, in particular LDCs, SIDS and countries with economies in transition, are eligible for funding by the GEF if: they are parties to the NP; or they are parties to the CBD and provide a clear political commitment towards becoming parties to the NP, accompanied by indicative activities and expected milestones, in the form of a written assurance to the Secretariat, for up to four years after the NP has entered into force.

Regarding the sixth replenishment of the GEF (GEF-6), the COP/MOP: urges parties to prioritize ABS during the programming of their GEF-6 national allocations and integrate ABS within their NBSAPs; and requests the GEF to give due consideration to multi-focal area projects.

RESOURCE MOBILIZATION FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF THE PROTOCOL

On Monday, 13 October, the Secretariat introduced the draft decision on resource mobilization for the implementation of the NP with bracketed text on whether domestic resources generated through successful implementation of ABS agreements can be considered new and innovative mechanisms towards NP implementation. Switzerland and Egypt supported deletion of the brackets. The EU underscored the need to mobilize resources from all sources. India said allocation of resources generated through benefit-sharing agreements should be left to parties, based on national circumstances. The EU and India supported reporting on resource mobilization under the reporting procedures of the Convention. Kenya, for the African Group, said that ABS is not a financial mechanism of the Convention and called for retaining the brackets. Switzerland, with Norway, opposed reopening negotiated text recommended by the ICNP. A Friends of the Chair group was formed to consider draft decision text. On Friday, 17 October, the COP/MOP adopted the decision.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.13), the COP/MOP encourages parties to, inter alia: direct domestic resources, in accordance with national circumstances, as well as resources generated through biodiversity financing mechanisms, towards the implementation of the objectives of the NP; take appropriate measures within the governing bodies of relevant multilateral financial institutions and development organizations to ensure that due priority and attention is given to the effective allocation of predictable resources for the implementation of the NP; and mainstream implementation of the NP in their development cooperation plans and priorities and in the NBSAPs. It further encourages parties, other governments, relevant organizations, the private sector and financial institutions to provide, in accordance with their capabilities, financial resources for the implementation of the NP and to include support for implementation as a priority area for funding.

The COP/MOP requests the Secretariat to: prepare a synthesis of the information received and to provide an overview of the status and trends in funding for consideration by COP/MOP 2; prepare a document on possible relevant sources of international funding to support the efforts by parties to mobilize additional international financial resources for the implementation of the Protocol; and to develop guidance tools and training materials, in collaboration with relevant organizations, to assist parties in the mobilization of financial, technical and human resources for the implementation of the NP.

BUDGET

On Monday, 13 October, Chair Pande introduced the programme budget (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/27 and Add.1). It was decided that the budget contact group under COP 12, chaired by Spencer Thomas (Grenada), would also consider the budget for the 2015-2016 biennium following the entry into force of the NP. On Friday, 17 October, the COP/MOP heard a final report and adopted the decision without amendment.

Final Decision: In the decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.14), the COP/MOP decides that the financial rules and regulations and COP decisions on the budget be applied, mutatis mutandis to the NP. It sets up for three years, from 1 January 2015 to 31 December 2017, a Trust Fund for the core programme budget for the NP, and a Special Voluntary Trust Fund for additional voluntary contributions in support of approved activities. The COP approves a core programme budget of US$290,200 for 2015 and US$985,500 for 2016, for the listed purposes, including staff costs, Bureau meetings, Compliance Committee meetings, CH informal advisory group meetings, COP/MOP 2, and translation costs for the CH, as well as the Secretariat staffing as listed. It also adopts the NP scale of assessments; and establishes a working capital reserve for the core budget that will build up to 7.5% of approved biennial expenditure.

IMPROVING THE EFFICIENCY OF STRUCTURES AND PROCESSES UNDER THE CONVENTION AND ITS PROTOCOLS

This item was addressed in WG I on Monday, 13 October. Delegates discussed the SBI and concurrent meetings. The Secretariat noted that the item had already been considered under Cartagena Protocol COP/MOP 7 and was under consideration at COP 12.

SBI: Many parties reiterated their support for the organization of concurrent meetings of the COP and the COP/MOPs, and the establishment of an SBI to replace the WGRI, stressing the need to avoid duplication of work. 

On Tuesday, 14 October, delegates considered CRPs on SBI under the NP and the Convention, respectively. The CRP under the NP was approved, noting that, once the CBD COP document is discussed, language in the NP text may change to reflect interconnections between the two documents.

Final Decision: In the decision on the SBI (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.3), the COP/MOP: decides to designate the SBI, established by COP 12, to also serve the NP; agrees that the SBI terms of reference, as adopted by COP 12, should apply, mutatis mutandis, to the functions of the SBI when serving the NP; and notes that when the SBI exercises its functions with regard to matters concerning the NP, decisions should be taken only by parties to the NP.

Concurrent meetings: Many developing country parties stressed the need to ensure their full and effective participation. Switzerland proposed maintaining flexibility regarding the organization of WG sessions. India highlighted limited time to deal with agenda items at concurrent meetings. Discussing a CRP on Tuesday, 14 October, delegates decided to adopt the language of the COP CRP on contributions to support full and effective implementation.

Final Decision: In the final decision (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.4), the COP/MOP: decides to hold its future ordinary meetings concurrent with the meetings of the COP and Cartagena Protocol COP/MOP within a two-week period; requests the Secretariat to prepare the organization of work of COP/MOP 2; calls upon developed country parties to increase their contributions to the relevant voluntary trust funds to ensure the full and effective participation of representatives from developing country parties, in particular LDCs, SIDS and parties with economies in transition, as well as ILC representatives; and decides to review the experience with the concurrent organization of meetings at COP/MOP 3 and COP/MOP 4.

HIGH-LEVEL SEGMENT

The High-level Segment convened on Wednesday, 15 October. Yoon Seong-kyu, Minister of Environment of the Republic of Korea, pledged his country’s commitment to biodiversity conservation and noted that the Pyeongchang Roadmap comes at a critical point as the CBD undertakes a mid-term review of the Strategic Plan and its implementation.

Prime Minister Chung Hongwon, Republic of Korea, urged directing all efforts toward implementing the Pyeongchang Roadmap, and highlighted his country’s initiatives to enable this by, inter alia: doubling its financial contribution toward implementation by 2015; promoting technical and scientific cooperation through the Bio-Bridge Initiative; and providing full support for the Sustainable Ocean Initiative.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in a video message, called on parties to take the necessary steps to implement the post-2015 development agenda alongside the NP and the CBD’s Strategic Plan “for the sake of our and future generations.”

Helen Clark, Administrator of the UN Development Programme, highlighted her organization’s commitment to upscale investment in the management of ecosystems and biodiversity through the Biodiversity Financial Initiative.

GEF CEO and Chairperson Naoko Ishii described the GBO-4 outcomes as a sobering picture of the state of biodiversity and ecosystems. Noting that “money alone is not enough,” she warned that transformational change will only occur when biodiversity is fully integrated into the post-2015 development agenda and the SDGs.

Describing life as intrinsically linked to cultural diversity, and moral and spiritual values, Ibrahim Thiaw, Deputy Executive Director, UNEP, noted that decisions reached at the COP are only as effective as national-level achievements.

CBD Executive Secretary Braulio Dias said the fate of humanity is tightly linked with biodiversity and warned that unless the Strategic Plan is implemented in all countries, “virtually none of the SDGs will be achieved.”

HIGH-LEVEL SEGMENT PLENARY: After COP 12 President Yoon opened the session, CBD Executive Secretary Braulio Dias presented an overview of the GBO-4, drawing attention to the gap between commitment to implementation of the Aichi targets and the rate of implementation, underscoring that more needs to be done to address biodiversity loss. Other speakers included: Amina Mohammed, Special Adviser to the UN Secretary-General on Post-2015 Development Planning; Choi Moon-Soon, Governor of Gangwon Province, Republic of Korea; Reginald Melanson, Executive Director, Canadian Business and Biodiversity Council; Cristián Samper, President, Wildlife Conservation Society; Maria Eugenia Choque Quispe, UNPFII; Choony Kim, CBD Alliance; and Christian Schwarzer and Melina Sakiyama, Global Youth Biodiversity Network. For detailed coverage, see http://www.iisd.ca/vol09/enb09643e.html

PANEL DISCUSSIONS: Four high-level panel discussions were held on 15-16 October on the following topics:

•  Integrating biodiversity into the Sustainable Development Goals and post-2015 agenda

•  Integrating NBSAPs into national and local development and poverty eradication strategies and planning processes;

•  Nature-based solutions to global challenges; and

•  Biodiversity, climate change and creative economy.

For detailed coverage of these discussions, see http://www.iisd.ca/vol09/enb09643e.html and http://www.iisd.ca/vol09/enb09644e.html

CLOSING PLENARY: The High-level Segment Closing Plenary convened on Thursday afternoon, 16 October. Regional groups made statements and panel chairs provided summaries of the panel discussions, highlighting: the Group of 77 and China’s Santa Cruz Declaration “For a New World Order for Living Well,” the COP 11 commitment to doubling international financial flows for biodiversity conservation by 2015, including from domestic sources and the private sector; the potential for nature-based solutions to effectively meet global challenges; the importance of full and effective participation of developing countries; and biodiversity conservation as a cornerstone for life, human health, environment integrity and economic growth.

Delegates adopted the Gangwon Declaration on Biodiversity for Sustainable Development. Iraq called for the meeting documents to recognize the impact of violent conflict on nature and biodiversity, and for international support for conducting post-conflict environmental impact assessments. High-Level Segment Chair Yoon Seong-kyu suggested, and delegates agreed, that a final version be circulated.

GANGWON DECLARATION: In the Declaration, ministers and other heads of delegation recall the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, as well as the outcome document of the Rio+20 Conference. They note that progress towards the Aichi targets is insufficient, and they reaffirm their commitment to mobilize financial resources from all sources for the effective implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020.

Ministers welcome the importance placed on biodiversity in the outcome document of the Open Working Group on SDGs, and they call for further integration and mainstreaming of biodiversity in the post-2015 development agenda, inviting the UN General Assembly to integrate the Aichi targets in this agenda. They also call on parties and others to link implementation of the post-2015 development agenda to other relevant processes such as the UN Development Assistance Framework process and the NBSAPs, and they invite, as appropriate, the biodiversity-related conventions and organizations to strengthen cooperation on implementing the Strategic Plan.

They recognize the role of access and benefit-sharing, the creative economy approach, and the importance of conservation to further peace among nations in transboundary protected areas, welcoming the Republic of Korea’s Peace and Biodiversity Dialogue initiative to support the work of the CBD on such matters.

JOINT CLOSING PLENARY

On Friday afternoon, 17 October, COP 12 President Yoon Seong-kyu convened the joint closing plenary. Delegates heard a report on credentials, adopted the COP WG I and WG II reports with minor amendments (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/WG.1/L.1/Add.1 and 2) and approved the COP/MOP WG I Report (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/WG.1/L.1). Rapporteur Tokaduadua introduced the meeting report of the COP/MOP (UNEP/CBD/NP/COP-MOP/1/L.1), and it was adopted, as well as the COP 12 meeting report (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.1), which was adopted with a minor amendment. Iraq reiterated a call made during the High-level Segment for the meeting documents to recognize the impact of violent conflict on nature and biodiversity, and for international support for conducting post-conflict environmental impact assessments.

On other matters, regarding the dates and venues for Cartagena Protocol COP/MOP 8, NP COP/MOP 2 and CBD COP 13, plenary adopted a decision (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.8) welcoming Mexico’s offer to host these meetings in November 2016. A second decision notes the offers from Turkey and Egypt to host CBD COP 14, Cartagena Protocol COP/MOP 9 and NP COP/MOP 3 (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.36).

Delegates adopted a tribute to the government and people of the Republic of Korea (UNEP/CBD/COP/12/L.35).

Speaking for GRULAC, Saint Kitts and Nevis reiterated the region’s commitment to achieving the goals contained in the Strategic Plan as well as the Aichi targets, noting that more tangible efforts are required by all. He highlighted the significance of NP COP/MOP1, and welcomed delegates to his region for COP/MOP 2.

Georgia, for the CEE, expressed gratitude to donor countries that supported developing country participation, welcomed the Gangwon Declaration as an important tool in the achievement of the Aichi targets, lauded the decision on EBSAs, and called for financial and technical assistance for NBSAP implementation.

South Africa, for the LMMCs: urged parties to “walk the talk,” calling for predictable financial resources to ensure that the gap between available resources and what parties are required to do is reduced; and emphasized links between the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), SDGs and Aichi targets.

Welcoming the decision on resource mobilization, the EU reaffirmed EU member states’ commitment to doubling total biodiversity-related financial resource flows to developing countries by 2015, using average annual biodiversity funding in 2006-2010 as a basis, and maintaining this level until 2020. He welcomed: progress on, inter alia, synthetic biology, IAS guidance, IPLCs terminology, biodiversity and human health, ecosystem conservation and restoration, and cooperation; and COP/MOP 1 decisions’ potential to ensure effective functioning of the NP and provide legal certainty for providers and users.

Mauritania, for the African Group: reaffirmed the Group’s commitment for the successful implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity and the achievement of the Aichi targets; noted with strong concern that progress to achieve the Aichi targets by 2020 is not yet sufficient and additional measures are necessary to bring the Strategic Plan back on track; urged for integration of biodiversity in the SDGs and the post-2015 development agenda; welcomed efforts for technical support and capacity building; stressed the key role of resource mobilization and the need for sizeable voluntary contributions; and welcomed the Gangwon Declaration and the Pyeongchang Roadmap.

Samoa, for the Pacific Islands, underlined links between biodiversity and sustainable development and addressed successful initiatives in SIDS. He noted that 2014 is dedicated to island biodiversity and underscored the need for NP ratifications and achievement of the Aichi targets.

The UNPFII stressed participation of indigenous people for the effective implementation of the Convention and its Protocols. She underlined that the NP constitutes an instrument for the protection of indigenous people and its implementation should start by community protocols based on TK. She concluded noting that, during COP 12, there were cold days with warm cooperation and results that encourage all to continue working hard.

The IIFB called on parties to pursue mainstreaming of IPLC terminology in the negotiations of the post-2015 development agenda.

BirdLife International, Conservation International, Nature Conservancy and WWF welcomed, inter alia: the decision on resource mobilization, recognition of the critical role of domestic resource mobilization and parties’ reconfirmation of commitments made in Hyderabad on international financial flows.

Looking forward to host COP13, Mexico underlined the need to draw attention to the link between biodiversity and human well-being.

Complementing delegates for their achievements made in the spirit of compromise, COP/MOP 1 Chair Hem Pande noted that with the entry into force of the NP, a new era of trust building and partnership among users and providers of genetic resources has begun.

Ibrahim Thiaw, Deputy Executive Director, UNEP, said at the next joint meeting of the Convention and its Protocols, the mid-way mark to 2020 will have been crossed. He stressed that the greatest difficulty is in maintaining the momentum, comparing the race against biodiversity loss to a “long-distance marathon.”

CBD Executive Secretary Braulio Dias thanked the Republic of Korea for hosting the meeting and, highlighting the meeting outcomes, held up the Pyeongchang Roadmap as a success that “will enable us to turn many of the indicators in the GBO from yellow to green.”

COP 12 President Yoon Seong-kyu and COP/MOP 1 Chair Hem Pande jointly gaveled the concurrent meetings to a close at 8:43 pm.

A BRIEF ANALYSIS OF THE MEETING

The days were cool and the welcome warm, as delegates arrived to under-floor heating and kimchi-flavored hotpots in the hills of Gangwon province, Republic of Korea, for the 12th meeting of the Conference of Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity. Amid the blaze of autumn colors across the surrounding hills, the meeting marked some firsts under the CBD: the first COP/MOP of the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing, and the first COP/MOP held concurrently with the CBD COP. Euphoria around entry into force of the Protocol was tempered, however, by the findings of the Fourth Global Biodiversity Outlook (GBO-4) launched at the start of COP 12: GBO-4 showed that, with few exceptions, at the current rate of progress most countries are unlikely to achieve the Aichi targets by the agreed deadlines.

This brief analysis will consider in what ways the CBD COP and Nagoya Protocol COP/MOP have set parties, CBD bodies and the Secretariat on course for attaining the Aichi targets, considering the wins and losses over the two weeks in Pyeongchang.

SHI-JAKI BANI-DA (KOREAN PROVERB: STARTING IS HALF THE TASK)

Undoubtedly, the Nagoya Protocol was star of the show in Pyeongchang, as delegates celebrated the Protocol’s entry into force on 12 October, with 54 ratifying countries. Entry into force also marked the achievement of the first part of Aichi Target 16, and the Protocol’s first COP/MOP took steps towards operationalization by establishing its compliance committee, agreeing on how indigenous and local communities (ILCs) will participate, and setting up its Access and Benefit Sharing Clearing-house.

Many delegates welcomed the agreement that the committee’s composition will include two permanent spots for ILC observers, who are self-nominated, and that issues brought to the committee can be decided by a majority vote. The COP/MOP also agreed that compliance procedures might be triggered by parties against other parties, by parties seeking assistance with compliance, and by the COP/MOP. ILCs may submit information for consideration by the compliance committee through the CBD Secretariat.

These decisions demonstrated progress on some sticky issues for decision making: whether ILCs can represent themselves under the Protocol, or must do so through governments; and whether consensus is a must for moving forward on every question. In the preparatory period leading up to the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples in September 2014, some countries had vigorously contested the possibility for ILCs to represent themselves alongside UN member states, rather than through them. COP 12 featured lengthy discussions on whether the term “indigenous peoples and local communities” could even be used in meeting documents. This latter point was eventually agreed, although with a reservation by Canada.

Other wins included the COP successfully expanding its scope of action on invasive alien species (IAS), by approving guidance on addressing the risks associated with the introduction of alien species as pets, aquarium and terrarium species, and live bait and live food. Risk assessment and management in general has been a contested area under the CBD, as some parties argue that the Convention does not have a mandate to function as a standard-setting body, and suggest that these questions are more appropriately dealt with under the WTO. Nevertheless, the IAS decision demonstrates that the CBD can play an important role in informing and influencing international norms that affect biodiversity across a range of sectors.

The COP also agreed to establish―subject to the availability of resources―an Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group (AHTEG) on synthetic biology, which will work towards determining whether and how “syn-bio” products are regulated. The thorny issue at COP 12 was how parties would establish risk assessment and risk management procedures and systems to regulate the environmental release of synthetic biology products. Parties disagreed on whether procedures and systems should be based on national, regional or international frameworks. Malaysia, the Philippines, Norway, Bolivia and others preferred that they be established under national, regional “and” international frameworks that may include the Cartagena Protocol. Others, including Brazil, Canada, Japan, the EU and Argentina, argued that, depending on national circumstances, national, regional “or” international frameworks (or any combination thereof) could be applicable. The COP eventually settled on the compromise that the establishment of risk assessment and risk management procedures or regulatory systems must be consistent with Article 3 of the CBD, which reaffirms the “no-harm principle” that states must ensure their activities do not cause damage to the environment of other states or areas beyond the limits of national jurisdiction.

KIMCHI-GUK-BUTEO MA-SI-JI MAL-RA (KOREAN PROVERB: DON’T DRINK THE KIMCHI SOUP FIRST, I.E. DON’T GET AHEAD OF YOURSELF)

Despite these gains, COP 12 stopped short on some important areas of commitment, first and foremost on the financing of biodiversity. Negotiations up to the final hours of COP 12 indicated that some developed countries, as well as some of the larger developing countries, might water down the commitment made in Hyderabad to double financial flows for biodiversity by 2015. Developed and developing countries reached an impasse in the closing hours of the COP on whether to maintain the Hyderabad commitment of “preliminary targets” in an “interim decision,” with some countries wanting to defer the target date for doubling financial flows by another five years, to 2020. The COP fended off this threat, agreeing, in the end, to hold fast to the 2015 commitment, but to refer simply to “targets”—a compromise decision in place of the “final targets” on financing that many developing countries had preferred. The current decision allows for countries to renegotiate this decision at the COP 13, if they wish. Even traditional critics welcomed the decision, calling it “a step in the right direction,” as it opens the way for stronger targets, if intersessional lobbying is successful.

The COP also agreed to include a reference to mobilizing domestic resources, in the face of initial opposition from some large developing countries wary of releasing the global North from its historic responsibilities. “This is the first time the COP has adopted this language, so it is, in its own way, a small breakthrough,” said a Northern observer. “This kind of recognition encourages a diverse funding mix and shows parties’ good faith and willingness to back up COP decisions with domestic fundraising efforts.” Others, however, bemoaned the lack of stronger financing commitments at the COP, stating that budget constraints are largely a matter of priorities.

Marine issues were another area of concern at COP 12. The CBD’s work on describing ecologically and biologically significant marine areas (EBSAs) was previously contested by some countries with strong fisheries interests, on the grounds that areas beyond national jurisdiction fall within the purview of an ongoing UN General Assembly process. This issue has continued to be highly sensitive for two reasons: potential overlaps with the Ad Hoc Open-ended Informal Working Group to study issues relating to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction process, and concerns over threats to national sovereignty from pressure to conform to international standards. SBSTTA 18, prior to COP 12, had proposed further work on EBSAs to identify “stressors” in these sensitive marine and coastal environments, potentially opening the way for greater transparency and international collaboration to address issues such as deep-sea mining and excessive pressure on fisheries. COP 12 initially managed to reach agreement with one holdout―Iceland―to approve the listing of EBSAs in its own territory. At the last minute, however, Peru, Argentina and Mexico blocked the listing of some EBSAs in their own territories, and countries stopped short of clearly prescribing a way forward on regional and cross-border cooperation. The final compromise decision is a marvel of opacity, inviting parties “who find it appropriate to do so” to undertake scientific and technical analysis in marine and coastal areas “where appropriate,” but without a clear mandate for transboundary cooperation.

O-NEUL KEOD-JI ANEU-MYEON NAE-ILEUN DDUI-EOYA HAN-DA (KOREAN PROVERB: IF YOU DON’T WALK TODAY, YOU WILL HAVE TO RUN TOMORROW)

Despite some areas of progress in operationalizing the Nagoya Protocol and expanding the scope of some issues covered under the CBD, it was clear that much more is needed to reverse the tide on biodiversity loss. While GBO-4 reported that countries are on track to achieving Aichi Target 11 of conserving 17% of terrestrial and inland water areas, observers noted there is often a large gap between protection on paper and reality. On marine protected areas, GBO-4 acknowledges that the world is far from reaching this target in open ocean and deep sea areas. On many other issues, the report shows a downward trend, as forest loss, increased levels of nitrogen and phosphorus pollution, coral reef degradation and species extinctions continue.

In the face of these threats, the High-Level Panel on global assessment of resources for implementing the CBD’s Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 estimated, in 2010, that US$150-440 billion would be needed annually in biodiversity-related financial flows to reverse the downward trend, a far cry from the approximately US$50 billion currently spent on addressing biodiversity worldwide. In this context, many delegates highlighted the potential for the post-2015 development agenda negotiations to both strengthen international commitment to biodiversity targets, and promote financial flows.

Delegates’ discussion of sustainable development eventually spawned two separate decisions from COP 12: one covering integration of biodiversity into the post-2015 development agenda and the SDGs, as well as biodiversity for poverty eradication and sustainable development; and another focusing on biodiversity and human health. The question of integrating biodiversity as an economic and social consideration, not only an environmental one, was discussed at COP 12 as the Ebola crisis in West Africa brought this issue to the forefront. Delegates noted that health, in the current version of the SDGs, does not acknowledge biodiversity linkages, and that more work can be done to promote understanding of the links between ecosystem and human health. In this respect, the COP promoted recognition of biodiversity linkages with non-traditional issues and partners, setting the stage for increased and expanded cooperation in the coming months and years.

The two-day High-level Segment (HLS) during the second week placed the integration issue front and center, devoting the first morning to discussions of how biodiversity can be integrated into the sustainable development agenda at national and international levels. At the close of the HLS, ministers agreed on the Gangwon Declaration, which invites the UN General Assembly to consider integrating objectives of the CBD, the Strategic Plan and the Aichi Targets in the post-2015 development agenda.

 “It’s not too late for this,” affirmed a couple of NGO observers. With a synthesis report to be presented by the UN Secretary-General in November, they suggested that the task for biodiversity champions could be to defend the biodiversity and ecosystems-related components of the SDG package, and to lobby for strong indicators on biodiversity to be included under the various targets.

GO-SAENG GGEUT-EH NAKI EUN-DA: (KOREAN PROVERB: AT THE END OF HARDSHIP COMES HAPPINESS, I.E. DON’T GIVE UP)

As the CBD looks increasingly to business sources for biodiversity financing, some noted that the COP appears unable to tackle hard issues and vested interests, for example, in relation to agriculture. This sector accounts for 70% of biodiversity loss worldwide, but was little discussed at COP 12. Observers suggested this is partly a turf question, as these issues are being discussed in other multilateral fora, including the FAO, but it also indicates that the CBD, as a venue, is somewhat disconnected from economic issues, despite ongoing discussion of the need for adequate valuation of ecosystem services, and initiatives such as The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB).

Nevertheless, the CBD, with its “softly, softly” approach, may succeed in advancing action in other fora besides the COP itself, and so far has provided a broad umbrella beneath which diverse initiatives are taking root. Some issues have been given a push forward through COP 12: for example, ‘peace and biodiversity’ emerged as a theme during the meeting, as Republic of Korea delegates highlighted success in restoring ecosystems in the Demilitarized Zone between North and South Korea, suggesting that biodiversity conservation could be a foundation for peace and reconciliation activities. A session on this topic, at the HLS, resulted in a call from Iraq for aid in assessing the impacts of violent conflict on nature and biodiversity, and delegates acknowledged the impacts of landmines and other ravages of war on the landscape, fauna and flora.

Lobbying on the sidelines during the two weeks of the COP showed there is still belief that the CBD can be a venue for consideration of biodiversity issues that don’t yet have a “home” in the international system. Moreover, scientific and technical work commissioned by the COP can potentially advance international standard setting, as seen in the case of syn-bio and risk assessment. While conservationists at COP 12 lamented the failure to advance international cooperation on EBSAs, they acknowledged that the issue could be viewed from a “glass half-full” perspective. “At the end of the day, we have 150 EBSAs that we didn’t have two years ago, and this does provide some basis for extending our work on marine issues with governments,” commented one.

The CBD, some suggest, may function as the soft underbelly of international environmental decision making, where emerging issues can penetrate the multilateral system, with a chance of gaining legitimacy and further currency. In this respect, COP 12 was able to somewhat advance the reach and scope of the CBD on a limited number of issues.

While there were few headline-making decisions coming out of COP 12, some viewed this as an indication that implementation is under way, fulfilling the calls made at COP 11. The task for countries in the post-2015 era will be to not backslide on commitments, but to hold steady, defending the CBD as the prime venue where threats to biodiversity can be addressed.

UPCOMING MEETINGS

International Alliance of Research Universities (IARU) Sustainability Science Congress: This conference, organized by the Future Earth research platform, the Global Green Growth Forum and the association fødevareBanken, brings together academics, businesses and policy makers to promote collaboration on sustainable solutions. Topics include: feeding future generations with limited resources; the multiple demands on biomass; putting biodiversity concerns into operation; and elucidating sustainability-health interactions.  dates: 22-24 October 2014  location: Copenhagen, Denmark  contact: Scientific Steering Committee  email: IARU2014@science.ku.dk www: http://sustainability.ku.dk/iarucongress2014/

CMS COP 11: Ecuador will host the eleventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 11) to the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS) in November 2014, marking the first time that a CMS COP is held in Latin America. The COP will be preceded by a High Level Ministerial meeting on 3 November. A Standing Committee meeting will be held 9 November upon closure of the COP. dates: 4-9 November 2014  location: Quito, Ecuador  contact: CMS Secretariat  phone: +49-228-815-2401  fax: +49-228-815- 2449  email: secretariat@cms.int  www: http://www.cms.int/en/cop11

IUCN World Parks Congress 2014: The theme of the sixth International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Parks Congress theme “Parks, people, planet: inspiring solutions” aims to encourage discussion on, and create original approaches for, conservation and development, helping to address the gap in the conservation and sustainable development agenda. dates: 12-19 November 2014  location: Sydney, Australia  contact: Congress Secretariat  phone: +61-2-9254-5000  fax: +61-2-9251-3552  email:info@worldparkscongress.org  www: http://worldparkscongress.org/

Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2): This high-level ministerial conference is jointly organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the World Health Organization (WHO), in cooperation with the UN High Level Task Force on the Global Food Security Crisis, other UN agencies, the World Bank and the World Trade Organization. The meeting will review progress by senior officials from agriculture, health and other ministries, UN agencies, NGOs, academia and the private sector.  dates: 19-21 November 2014  location: Rome, Italy  contact: FAO ICN2 Secretariat  phone: +39-06-570-53101  fax: +39-06-570-53152  email: ICN2@fao.org  www: http://www.fao.org/about/meetings/icn2/en/

Joint CBD, UNCCD Workshop on NBSAPs - NAP Synergies: The Secretariats of the Convention on Biological Diversity and the UN Convention to Combat Desertification are jointly organizing a workshop on synergies for the design, development and implementation of CBD National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs) and UNCCD National Action Programmes (NAPs). Participants will be selected to attend through a nomination process and will include those directly responsible for the development, updating and/or implementation of the CBD NBSAPs and the UNCCD NAPs. dates: 21-22 November 2014  location: Cairo, Egypt  contact: CBD Secretariat  phone: +1-514-288-2220  fax: +1-514-288-6588  email: secretariat@cbd.int  www: http://www.cbd.int/doc/notifications/2014/ntf-2014-118-drought-water-en.pdf

Second Session of the Team of Technical and Legal Experts on ABS of the CGRFA: The second session of the Team of Technical and Legal Experts on Access and Benefit-sharing of the CGRFA will continue work on draft elements to facilitate the domestic implementation of ABS for different sub-sectors of genetic resources for food and agriculture.  dates: 27-29 November 2014  location: Rome, Italy  contact: CGRFA Secretariat  phone: +39-06-5705-4981 fax: +39-06-5705-5246  email: cgrfa@fao.org   www : http://www.fao.org/nr/cgrfa/

CBD Expert Workshop to Prepare Practical Guidance on Preventing and Mitigating the Significant Adverse Impacts of Marine Debris on Marine and Coastal Biodiversity and Habitats: Organized by the CBD Secretariat with support from the European Commission, this workshop will bring together nominated experts to discuss the impacts of marine debris on marine and coastal biodiversity and habitats.  dates: 2-4 December 2014  location: Baltimore, US  contact: CBD Secretariat  phone: +1-514-288-2220  fax: +1-514-288-6588  email:secretariat@cbd.int  www: http://www.cbd.int/doc/?meeting=MCBEM-2014-03

First Global Soil Biodiversity Conference: This conference is organized on the theme of ‘Assessing Soil Biodiversity and its Role for Ecosystem Services,’ supported by the EU, the Secretariats of the CBD and the UN Convention to Combat Desertification, and the Global Soil Partnership. The conference will discuss trends in soil biodiversity and the impacts of global change, practices to maintain and enhance ecosystem services provided by soil biodiversity, and global harmonization of methods for structural and functional diversity of soil organisms. dates: 2-5 December 2014  location: Dijon, France  contact: Global Soil Biodiversity Initiative  email: gsbi1@dijon.inra.fr www: http://www.gsbiconference.elsevier.com

Second Meeting of the ITPGR Working Group to Enhance the Functioning of the MLS: This meeting of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture’s Working Group to Enhance the Functioning of the Multilateral System of Access and Benefit-Sharing will continue considering measures to increase user-based payments and contributions to the Benefit-sharing Fund, and additional measures to enhance the functioning of the MLS.  dates: 9-11 December 2014  location: Geneva, Switzerland  contact: ITPGR Secretariat  phone: +39-06-570-53441  fax: +39-06-570-53057  email: pgrfa-treaty@fao.org www: http://www.planttreaty.org/content/second-meeting-ad-hoc-open-ended-working-group-enhance-functioning-multilateral-system-acc-0

CGRFA 15 Special Information Seminar: Immediately preceding the 15th regular session of the CGRFA, this information seminar will focus on biodiversity and food security.  date: 17 January 2015  location: Rome, Italy  contact: CGRFA Secretariat  phone: +39-06-5705-4981  fax: +39-06-5705-5246  email: cgrfa@fao.org  www: http://www.fao.org/nr/cgrfa/cgrfa-home/en/

CGRFA 15: The 15th regular session of the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture is expected to address a range of issues related to its Multi-Year Programme of Work.  dates: 19-23 January 2015  location: Rome, Italy  contact: Linda Collette, CGRFA Secretary  phone: +39-06-570-54981  fax: +39-06-570-53152  email: cgrfa@fao.org www: http://www.fao.org/nr/cgrfa/cgrfa-meetings/cgrfa-comm/fifteenth-reg/en/

Ninth Ad Hoc Open-ended Informal Working Group to Study Issues Relating to the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Marine Biodiversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction: This meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Informal Working Group to study issues relating to the conservation and sustainable use of marine biological diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction (BBNJ) aims to make recommendations to the UN General Assembly on the scope, parameters and feasibility of an international instrument under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).  dates: 20-23 January 2015  location: UN Headquarters, New York  contact: UN Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea  email: doalos@un.org www: http://www.un.org/Depts/los/biodiversityworkinggroup/biodiversityworkinggroup.htm

Tenth Session of the Commission on Phytosanitary Measures: The tenth session of the Commission on Phytosanitary Measures of the International Plant Protection Convention will consider items relating to the state of plant protection around the world, actions to control the spread of pests into new areas, international standards, guidelines for the recognition of regional plant protection organizations; and cooperation with international organizations on matters covered by the IPPC.  dates: 16-20 March 2015  location: Rome, Italy  contact: IPPC Secretariat  phone: +39-06-5705-3388  email: IPPC@fao.org www: https://www.ippc.int/events/standard-setting/tenth-session-commission-phytosanitary-measures

Expo Milano 2015: Under the theme, “Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life,” the six-month Expo aims to open up a dialogue between international players on the challenges of nutrition and planetary resources. During meetings, conferences and seminars participants will address issues including food and water security, and biodiversity.  dates: 1 May - 31 October 2015  location: Milan, Italy  contact: Expo Organizers  phone: +39-02-8945-9400/499  www: http://www.expo2015.org/it

Twenty-ninth session of the WIPO Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore: The committee will take stock of progress and discuss future work proposals. dates: 2015 (TBC)  location: Geneva, Switzerland (TBC)  contact: WIPO Secretariat  phone: +41-22-338-8161  fax: +41-22-338-8140  www: http://www.wipo.int/tk/en/igc/

Second Meeting of the UN Environment Assembly: The UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) will convene for the second time in 2016. The UNEA of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) represents the highest level of governance of international environmental affairs in the UN system. dates: 23-27 May 2016  location: Nairobi, Kenya  contact: Jiri Hlavacek, UNEP  phone: +254-20-7621234  email: unepinfo@unep.org  www: http://www.unep.org/

CBD COP 13, Cartagena Protocol COP/MOP 8, and Nagoya Protocol COP/MOP 2: These meetings are expected to take place concurrently in 2016. dates:  November 2016  location: Los Cabos, Mexico  contact: CBD Secretariat  phone: +1-514-288-2220  fax: +1-514-288-6588  email:secretariat@cbd.int www:  http://www.cbd.int/

GLOSSARY

ABS      
ABS-CH
AHTEG
CBD
CEE       
CEPA
CHM
CITES
COP
COP/MOP
CRP
EBSA
FAO
GBO      
GEF
GRULAC
GSPC
HLS       
IAS
IIFB
ILCs
ICNP
IPBES
IPLCs
ITPGR   
IUCN
LDCs
LMMC  
LMO     
MAT     
NBSAPs
NP
PA
PIC
REDD+
SBI        
SBSTTA
SDGs    
SIDS
TK
UNCTAD
UNESCO
UNEP
UNPFII
WG       
WGRI
WHO    
WIPO
WTO      

Access and benefit-sharing
Access and Benefit-sharing Clearing-house
Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group
Convention on Biological Diversity
Central and Eastern Europe
Communication, education and public awareness
Clearing-house Mechanism
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora
Conference of the Parties
Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Nagoya Protocol
Conference room paper
Ecologically or biologically significant marine area
United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization
Global Biodiversity Outlook report
Global Environment Facility
Latin American and Caribbean Group
Global Strategy for Plant Conservation
High-level Segment
Invasive alien species
International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity
Indigenous and local communities
Intergovernmental Committee for the Nagoya Protocol                  
Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services
Indigenous peoples and local communities
International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture     
International Union for the Conservation of       Nature
Least developed countries
Like-Minded Megadiverse Countries         
Living modified organism
Mutually agreed terms
National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plans
Nagoya Protocol
Protected area
Prior informed consent
Reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries, including conservation, sustainable forest management and enhancement of forest carbon stocks
Subsidiary Body for Implementation
Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice
Sustainable Development Goals
Small island developing states
Traditional knowledge
United Nations Conference on Trade and Development
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
United Nations Environment Programme
United Nations Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues
Working Group
Working Group on the Review of Implementation of the Convention
World Health Organization
World Intellectual Property Organization World Trade Organization

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This issue of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin © <enb@iisd.org> is written and edited by Beate Antonich, Tallash Kantai, Elena Kosolapova, Ph.D., Suzi Malan, Chad Monfreda, Delia Paul, Elsa Tsioumani, and Asterios Tsioumanis, Ph.D. The Digital Editor is Francis Dejon. The Editor is Pamela Chasek, Ph.D. <pam@iisd.org>. The Director of IISD Reporting Services is Langston James “Kimo” Goree VI <kimo@iisd.org>. The Sustaining Donors of the Bulletin are the European Commission (DG-ENV and DG-CLIMATE) and the Government of Switzerland (the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) and the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC)). General Support for the Bulletin during 2014 is provided by the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB), the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, SWAN International, the Finnish Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the Japanese Ministry of Environment (through the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies - IGES), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and the International Development Research Centre (IDRC). Specific funding for coverage of this meeting has been provided by the Ministry of Environment of the Republic of Korea, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH/German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), and the Finnish Ministry of Environment. Funding for translation of the Bulletin into French has been provided by the Government of France, the Wallonia, Québec, and the International Organization of La Francophonie/Institute for Sustainable Development of La Francophonie (IOF/IFDD). The opinions expressed in the Bulletin are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of IISD or other donors. Excerpts from the Bulletin may be used in non-commercial publications with appropriate academic citation. For information on the Bulletin, including requests to provide reporting services, contact the Director of IISD Reporting Services at <kimo@iisd.org>, +1-646-536-7556 or 300 East 56th St., 11D, New York, NY 10022 USA.
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