Action in support of Biodiversity urgently needed: UN Meeting on Biodiversity opens in Hyderabad India
8 October, 2012 - Representatives from over 170 countries today began deliberations in Hyderabad, India, on the way forward to protect the planet’s biodiversity.
The eleventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 11) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), known as COP 11 for short, follows on the historic outcomes of the 2010 Nagoya biodiversity summit. In Nagoya, governments adopted a new Strategic Plan for Biodiversity, and two new supplementary protocols to the CBD, setting the course for halting biodiversity loss by the end of the current decade.
Mr. Ryu Matsumoto, the former Minister of the Environment of Japan, who served as COP 10 President in Nagoya, said at the opening: "While the COP10 outcomes are remarkable achievements, there will be no change unless they are implemented. At COP11, I trust that we can agree on further measures to overcome challenges that require additional efforts."
At the meeting, the Government of India assumed the Presidency of COP 11. During their term, which runs from 2012 until 2014, the government of India will preside over the implementation of the work of the Convention, including the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity and its Aichi Biodiversity Targets.
Ms Jayanthi Natarajan, Minister of Environment and Forests, Government of India and COP 11 President, said that: "The present global economic crisis should not deter us, but on the contrary encourage us to invest more towards amelioration of the natural capital for ensuring uninterrupted ecosystem services, on which all life on Earth depends. Let us all be inspired by what Mahatma Gandhi said: 'The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems'. So let us commit ourselves to what we are capable of doing."
In his opening remarks, Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, the Executive Secretary to the Convention on Biological Diversity said: "I urge you, in Hyderabad, to mobilize the financial resources needed to enable developing countries to achieve the Aichi Targets at national level. In so doing, we will need to be creative and involve all partners."
"We need to … adopt new approaches and mechanisms, emphasizing the leveraging of resources from existing sources through mainstreaming, incorporating sustainability criteria in government procurement, reviewing and adjusting of economic instruments, and further engaging the business sector," adding, "We will be judged by our acts, not our words."
Ms. Amina Mohamed, UN Assistant Secretary-General and Deputy Executive Director of UNEP said: "our collective experience and the new analysis through initiatives such as TEEB and others have illuminated that the costs of inaction are far higher and will rise and that the losses the world—especially the poor—are sustaining annually as a result of unsustainable management of the natural world dwarf the investments."
"Furthermore, the private sector has a responsibility and a role to play too within the rules and regulations put in place by governments to ensure equity for all sectors of society. I would be keen to explore with the CBD Executive Secretary and his team, ever improving synergies between the inclusive Green Economy work and the TEEB work and that of the treaty, in particular at the national level" she said.
The meeting is mandated to consider, among others, the mobilization of resources in support of the Global Strategy for Biodiversity and its Aichi Targets, a report on the identification of ecologically and biologically significant areas in marine ecosystems as well as a number of other items related to the protection of biodiversity in marine ecosystems; ecosystem restoration and the relationship between biodiversity and climate change.
The meeting continues until 19 October 2012, with a high-level segment featuring the participation of ministers and heads of State that runs from 16 to 19 October 2012.
For more information:
- Website for the meeting
- Press sheets
- Documents for the meeting
- Annotated agenda, with a draft timetable for the conference
- Schedule of press conferences
- Information about the CEPA fair
- List of side events
- High-level segment information
- Information about the Rio Conventions Pavilion
- Webcasts for the meeting
- Coverage by the Earth Negotiations Bulletin
The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Opened for signature at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, and entering into force in December 1993, the Convention on Biological Diversity is an international treaty for the conservation of biodiversity, the sustainable use of the components of biodiversity and the equitable sharing of the benefits derived from the use of genetic resources. With 193 Parties, the Convention has near universal participation among countries. The Convention seeks to address all threats to biodiversity and ecosystem services, including threats from climate change, through scientific assessments, the development of tools, incentives and processes, the transfer of technologies and good practices and the full and active involvement of relevant stakeholders including indigenous and local communities, youth, NGOs, women and the business community. The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety is a subsidiary agreement to the Convention. It seeks to protect biological diversity from the potential risks posed by living modified organisms resulting from modern biotechnology. To date, 163 countries plus the European Union have ratified the Cartagena Protocol. The Secretariat of the Convention and its Cartagena Protocol is located in Montreal. For more information visit: www.cbd.int