he Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is the international legal instrument for the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources, that has been ratified by 196 nations.
Features of CBD
- The CBD covers biodiversity at all levels: ecosystems, species and genetic resources. It also covers biotechnology, including through the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety.
- The CBD’s governing body is the Conference of the Parties (COP). This ultimate authority of all governments (or Parties) that have ratified the treaty meets every two years to review progress, set priorities and commit to work plans.
- The Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) is based in Montreal, Canada. Its main function is to assist governments in the implementation of the CBD and its programmes of work, to organize meetings, draft documents, and coordinate with other international organizations and collect and spread information.
- The 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 15) to the Convention on Biological Diversity will take place from 17-30 May 2021 in Kunming, China.
Protocols to the CBD
- The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety is an international agreement which aims to ensure the safe handling, transport and use of living modified organisms (LMOs) resulting from modern biotechnology that may have adverse effects on biological diversity, taking also into account risks to human health. It was adopted on 29 January 2000 and entered into force on 11 September 2003.
- The Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization is an international agreement which aims at sharing the benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources in a fair and equitable way. It entered into force on 12 October 2014.
Aichi Biodiversity Targets
- People are aware of the values of biodiversity and the steps they can take to conserve and use it sustainably.
- The biodiversity values to be integrated into national and local development and poverty reduction strategies and planning processes and are being incorporated into national accounting and reporting systems.
- Incentives, including subsidies, harmful to biodiversity to be eliminated and positive incentives for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity to be developed.
- Governments, business and stakeholders at all levels to take steps to implement plans for sustainable production and consumption.
- The rate of loss of all natural habitats, including forests, to be least halved and where feasible brought close to zero.
- All fish and invertebrate stocks and aquatic plants to be harvested sustainably, so that overfishing is avoided.
- Areas under agriculture, aquaculture and forestry to be managed sustainably, ensuring conservation of biodiversity.
- Pollution, including from excess nutrients, to be brought to levels that are not detrimental to ecosystem function and biodiversity.
- Invasive alien species and pathways to be identified and prioritized and priority species to be controlled or eradicated.
- Multiple anthropogenic pressures on coral reefs, and other vulnerable ecosystems impacted by climate change or ocean acidification to be minimized.
- At least 17% of terrestrial and inland water, and 10% of coastal and marine areas, especially areas of particular importance for biodiversity and ecosystem services, to be conserved.
- The extinction of known threatened species to be prevented and their conservation status to be improved and sustained.
- The genetic diversity of cultivated plants and farmed and domesticated animals and of wild relatives to be maintained.
- Ecosystems that provide essential services to be restored and safeguarded, taking into account the needs of women, indigenous and local communities, and the poor and vulnerable.
- The ecosystem resilience and the contribution of biodiversity to carbon stocks to be enhanced, including restoration of at least 15% of degraded ecosystems.
- The Nagoya Protocol to be in force and operational.
- Each Party to develop, adopt as a policy instrument, a participatory and updated national biodiversity strategy and action plan.
- The traditional knowledge, innovations and practices of indigenous and local communities relevant for the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, and their customary use of biological resources, to be respected and integrated.
- The knowledge, science base and technologies relating to biodiversity to be widely shared and applied.
- The mobilization of financial resources for effectively implementing the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 to be increased substantially from the current levels.