UN Biodiversity Conference to Open in Cancun
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The UN Biodiversity Conference will begin with a High Level Segment (HLS), hosted by the Mexican government and organized with the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), under the theme ‘Mainstreaming Biodiversity for Well-being'.

The thirteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 13) to the CBD, the eighth meeting of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (COP-MOP 8) and the second 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 (COP-MOP 2) will be held concurrently from 4-17 December 2016.

A series of parallel meetings include the 2016 Business and Biodiversity Forum; the Summit ‘Muuchtanbal’ on Indigenous Experiences: Traditional Knowledge and Biological and Cultural Diversity; and the Rio Conventions Pavilion.

1 December 2016: The UN Biodiversity Conference, hosted by the Mexican Government and organized with the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) will open in Cancun, Mexico, with a High Level Segment (HLS) to be held from 2-3 December under the theme, ‘Mainstreaming Biodiversity for Well-being.’ The HLS will set the scene and provide the necessary political impetus to make progress on specific issues, including through the consideration of a Ministerial Declaration.

The main part of the UN Biodiversity Conference will open in the afternoon of Sunday, 4 December, and will close on Saturday, 17 December. The meeting will focus on plans, programmes and sectoral and cross-sectoral policies, particularly on agriculture, forestry, fisheries and tourism. It will include the concurrent meetings of the thirteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 13) to the CBD, the eighth meeting of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (COP-MOP 8) and the second 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 (COP-MOP 2).

CBD COP 13 will consider a series of substantive, organizational and financial issues. It will review progress towards implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and the achievement of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, and related means of implementation; and will consider strategic actions to enhance implementation of the Strategic Plan and achievement of the Aichi targets, including with respect to mainstreaming and the integration of biodiversity within and across sectors. Under these items, COP 13 will address: the implications of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development; biodiversity and climate change; protected areas; ecosystem restoration; forest biodiversity; and biodiversity and human health. Other substantive items concern issues related to: traditional knowledge, including guidelines for the repatriation of traditional knowledge; marine and coastal biodiversity, including ecologically or biologically significant marine areas, and a specific work plan on biodiversity and acidification in cold-water areas; invasive alien species; and other scientific and technical issues, including climate-related geoengineering, synthetic biology, implications of the assessment on pollinators of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), and sustainable wildlife management.

COP 13 will further address: issues related to operations of the Convention, including integration among the Convention and its Protocols, and reporting; capacity building and technical and scientific cooperation; cooperation with other conventions and international organizations; and resource mobilization, the financial mechanism and the budget for the next biennium.

Cartagena Protocol COP-MOP 8 will consider the report of, and elect new members to, the Compliance Committee; review the Framework and Action Plan for Capacity-Building; provide guidance on the operation and activities of the Biosafety Clearing-House; and consider the need to establish a subsidiary body for scientific and technical advice under the Protocol. The meeting will further address issues on: risk assessment and risk management, including a coordinated approach on the issue of synthetic biology; unintentional transboundary movements and emergency measures; transit and contained use of living modified organisms; socioeconomic considerations; the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress; and organizational, cooperation, public awareness, reporting, financial and budgetary matters.

Nagoya Protocol COP-MOP 2 will review progress towards Aichi target 16 on the Nagoya Protocol, and address: compliance, including the report of the Compliance Committee; the need for and modalities of a global multilateral benefit-sharing mechanism; the Access and Benefit-sharing (ABS) Clearing-House and information sharing; capacity building and awareness raising; and cooperation, administrative, financial and budgetary matters.

A series of meetings will be held in parallel with the UN Biodiversity Conference, including: the 3rd Science for Biodiversity Forum; the 2016 Business and Biodiversity Forum; the Summit ‘Muuchtanbal’ on Indigenous Experiences: Traditional Knowledge and Biological and Cultural Diversity; a workshop on the ABS Clearing-House; the 5th Global Biodiversity Summit of Cities and Subnational Governments; the Communication, Education and Public Awareness (CEPA) Fair; the Rio Conventions Pavilion; and a series of exhibitions and side-events. [IISD RS Coverage of UN Biodiversity Conference] [CBD Meeting Webpage] [Host Country Website] [High Level Segment] [UN Press Release]


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