11 July 2019
Trondheim Conference Focuses on Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework
Photo by: Lauren Anderson
story highlights

The report by the Conference Co-Chairs will be finalized in the coming weeks on the basis of participants’ input, and forwarded to relevant processes, including the CBD Open-ended Working Group on the post-2020 framework.

Among its key messages, the Conference highlighted that biodiversity conservation and sustainable use must be integrated into decision making in all sectors and that a holistic approach is needed to address interlinked challenges related to biodiversity, climate, food, and health.

9 July 2019: Held under the theme, ‘Making Biodiversity Matter: Knowledge and Know-how for the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework,’ the ninth Trondheim Conference on Biodiversity provided an opportunity for decision makers and experts from around the world to informally discuss key issues related to the post-2020 global biodiversity framework. The Conference aimed to support the process established by the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) by facilitating a shared understanding of key knowledge areas and helping to ensure that the process for developing the post-2020 framework is knowledge-based, just, and inclusive.

The Conference featured: presentations on a series of themes, including on key findings from recent assessments, on increasing action on biodiversity and ecosystem services as an asset for sustainability in other sectors, and on developing the post-2020 framework; and interactive exercises, including on pathways for the 2050 Vision for Biodiversity of ‘Living in Harmony with Nature.’ Conference Co-Chairs Nina Vik and Finn Katerås, Norwegian Environment Agency, produced a draft report with conclusions and recommendations, which will be finalized in the weeks following the Conference on the basis of participants’ input, and forwarded to relevant processes, including the CBD Open-ended Working Group on the post-2020 framework. Key messages that emerged from discussions include the following:

  • immediate action is needed to address the interlinked challenges of biodiversity loss and climate change;
  • biodiversity is important for all sectors of society and economy, and the cost of inaction will be large;
  • it is essential that the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity are integrated into plans and decision making in all sectors and at all levels; and
  • a holistic approach is needed to address simultaneously challenges related to biodiversity, climate, food, and health.

Participants acknowledged that addressing biodiversity loss is crucial for the achievement of most SDGs, further noting that the knowledge base is now stronger than ever to catalyze action.

The post-2020 framework will be developed on the basis of a solid scientific foundation.

The session on recent assessments and their implications for the post-2020 framework featured presentations on:

Participants further heard presentations and engaged in interactive exercises focusing on ways to achieve the change required as part of efforts to develop the post-2020 framework. At the end of the Conference, CBD Open-ended Working Group Co-Chairs Francis Ogwal (Uganda) and Basile van Havre (Canada) noted that the post-2020 framework will be developed on the basis of a “solid scientific foundation,” the current Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020, and the existing structure for national-level action related to national biodiversity strategies and action plans and reporting. With regard to new elements, they addressed the need to: involve new sectors and engage with non-state and economic actors; consider new factors such as population change, food and agriculture, human health, deforestation, and restoration; and integrate new responses such as landscape management. They identified as critical components: resource mobilization; linkages with the SDGs; coordination with other conventions; clarity in communication; and an improved reporting system.

Held from 2-5 July 2019 in Trondheim, Norway, the Conference was the largest in its history, with more than 450 invited participants. It was organized by the Government of Norway, in partnership with the CBD Secretariat, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the UN Development Programme (UNDP), and the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), with FAO as a patron.

Following the opening session of the Conference, a high-level meeting for invited guests was held in parallel. Hosted by Ola Elvestuen, Minister of Climate and Environment, Norway, the meeting focused on the post-2020 framework. It included sessions on biodiversity financing and implementation of the post-2020 framework, and a roundtable multi-stakeholder dialogue on ambitions and actions. In the evening, participants of a high-level dinner discussed issues related to reducing deforestation from globally traded agricultural commodities. [IISD RS Coverage of the Trondheim Conference] [Trondheim Conference Website] [Trondheim Conference Final Press Release] [Co-Chairs’ Draft Report] [CBD Timeline of the Deliberations on the Post-2020 Framework]

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