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HomeLatest NewsThe COP of biodiversity agrees to double the protected area by 2030

The COP of biodiversity agrees to double the protected area by 2030

Date: May 28, 2023 Time: 22:24:44

A total of 196 countries that are part of the XV United Nations Conference on Biodiversity have set themselves the goal of preserving biodiversity with their commitment to protect 30% of the terrestrial and marine surface. During the Biodiversity Summit held in Montreal (Canada), equivalent to the Climate Change Summit, the negotiators have reached the agreement after two weeks of meetings

The agreement implies increasing the current percentage of protection, which according to the UN is currently limited to 17% of terrestrial ecosystems and 10% of marine areas under some formal figure of protection. In addition, the framework agreement includes a pact to increase financing, especially in developing countries and small island states, with the aim of preventing future loss of biodiversity.

These initiatives contemplate a mobilization of 200,000 million dollars in 2030 from public and private resources. Although, the parties urged to eliminate before the end of the decade the

For her part, Teresa Ribera, Third Vice President and Minister for the Ecological Transition and Demographic Challenge, who participated in the negotiations, assessed that the commitment will allow effective protection and management for the conservation of 30% of the land surface and the by 2030. “We finally managed to agree on a global framework that guides our efforts to stop and reverse the loss of biodiversity and achieve a world with a positive nature by 2030”, stated Ribera, who recalled that Spain defends a high level of ambition

The agreement includes six documents related to the Global Biodiversity Framework; the resource mobilization strategy; the sharing of benefits from the use of digital sequence information of genetic resources (DSI); the monitoring framework; the mechanism for monitoring, reporting and review; and the decision on capacity building.

Specifically, it implies commitments to significantly reduce the risk of species extinctions and the restoration of 30% of the surface of degraded ecosystems by 2030; favorable spatial planning for biodiversity throughout the territory and the reduction of pollution, including reducing the risk of highly dangerous pesticides by at least half, as well as reducing the loss of nutrients to the environment, also to the half.

In addition, the new Global 2030 framework aims to eliminate, minimize and reduce the impacts derived from invasive alien species, through the identification and management of the entry routes of alien species, reduce by at least half the rates of and establishment of these species. Likewise, it undertakes to minimize the impact of climate change on biodiversity and promote adaptation, mitigation and reduction of disaster risks through nature-based solutions. Another point is aimed at achieving the full integration of biodiversity into sectoral policies, especially in sectors with the greatest impact on biodiversity such as agriculture, fishing, forest management and aquaculture.

Deal Financing

The mobilization of resources from all domestic and international, public and private sources will be added for the necessary financing for the execution of the global framework, while the incentives and subsidies that harm biodiversity will be identified, eliminated and reversed. Likewise, a new mechanism is established for the fair and equitable distribution of benefits derived from the use of digital information of sequences derived from genetic resources.

Along the same lines of celebration, the German Minister for the Environment, Steffi Lemke, with the agreement the international community has decided to put an end once and for all to the extinction of species. Speaking to DPA, she has called the end of the summit a sign of termination that now opens a “protection umbrella” for livelihoods. For Lemke this is a good day for environmental protection. “By protecting nature we protect ourselves and ensure a livable environment for our children,” she said.

Some NGOs doubt the pact

For Greenpeace, COP15 in Montreal has failed to provide the ambition, tools or funding needed to stop mass extinction. However, it makes explicit recognition of the rights, roles, territories and knowledge of indigenous peoples and their “irreplaceable work” as the most effective way to protect biodiversity.

Thus, the NGO considers that direct financing to Indigenous Peoples will be the next critical step and welcomes the fact that the objective of protecting at least 30% of the terrestrial and marine surface has been included. On the contrary, it is negative that it does not expressly include the exclusion of harmful activities in these new protected areas. “As it is in the text, it is an empty number, with protections that remain on paper,” warns the political adviser and representative of Greenpeace in the COP15 negotiations, Anna Ogniewska.

WWF has also welcomed the Montreal agreement but that the agreed objective could be undermined if important issues such as the protection of intact ecosystems and the fight against unsustainable production and consumption are not adequately addressed at the national level. In this sense, the global director of WWF, Marco Lambetini, has described as an “exceptional feat” for those who have negotiated that they have managed to agree on a common global objective that will guide collective and immediate action to stop and reverse the loss of biodiversity by 2030 and as “a victory for people and the planet”.

However, despite the “important milestone” for conservation, he warned that the agreement would be at risk due to slow implementation and a lack of mobilization of the promised resources. Among the criticisms, he adds that the agreement lacks a binding mechanism for governments to take more ambitious action if the targets were not achieved. “Governments have chosen the right side of history in Montreal, but history will judge us if we don’t keep the promise we made today,” he stressed.

For its part, Ecologists in Action describes COP15 as a “lost opportunity” for biodiversity because the approved Global Framework falls “halfway” towards the objectives. “Unfortunately, the final agreement is more disappointing than expected,” says the NGO, which denounces the influence of lobbies in the negotiations. Thus, because biodiversity “cannot wait another day”, it demands that the Spanish environmental administrations begin to take the necessary measures against the ecological crisis.

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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