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The Big Takeaway from COP15: Biodiversity Loss and Greenhouse Gas Emissions Are Two Sides of the Same Coin

The loss of biodiversity is not "the lesser problem" and should be addressed properly, even though it is much harder to quantify than the emissions of CO2 and other greenhouse gases.

But they are two sides of the same coin, two inevitably intertwined problems, and as such, they should be tackled in a mutually coordinated and ambitious way.

That being said, we felt grateful and relieved when the United Nations Biodiversity Conference (COP15) in Montreal, Canada, ended–after two weeks of negotiations and only a few days before Christmas–with a landmark agreement to guide global action on nature through to 2030.

Here are some of the targets of the new Global Biodiversity Framework as stated in the UNEP press release:

  • Effective conservation and management of at least 30 per cent of the world’s land, coastal areas and oceans. Currently, 17 percent of land and *8 per cent of marine areas are under protection
  • Restoration of 30 per cent of terrestrial and marine ecosystems
  • Reduce to near zero the loss of areas of high biodiversity importance and high ecological integrity

The GBF includes 23 targets, but the three mentioned above are linked to our activities, which is why wanted to highlight them.

Also, the deal is not legally binding, but countries will have to demonstrate progress towards achieving the framework’s goals through national and global reviews.

That's what we call the first step!

More here (UNEP report), here (The Nature Conservancy report) and here (BirdLife International Report).

Photo credits: / UN Biodiversity