Policy Update #18: Biodiversity and Land in the SDGs: A Forward-looking Review [viewed]

Now that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development has been adopted and the pivotal year of 2015 has concluded, this policy update looks back on how natural resource issues, specifically land and biodiversity, are reflected in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and how this new and highly visible development platform aligns with and may influence intergovernmental discourse and action on existing biodiversity and land agendas.

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CBD Secretariat Releases Report of Working Group on LMO Risk Assessment [viewed]

CBDFebruary 2016: The Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has released the report of the Ad hoc Technical Expert Group (AHTEG) on Risk Assessment and Risk Management of Living Modified Organisms (LMOs). The AHTEG: revised the Guidance on Risk Assessment of LMOs based on comments received; considered whether guidance on additional issues could be incorporated into the existing guidance; updated the list of background documents to the Guidance; and developed a plan for further work.

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WAVES Report Highlights Economic Benefits of Mangroves and Coral Reefs [viewed]

waves10 February 2016: Engineering and insurance models should be used to reevaluate the benefits of habitats like mangrove forests and coral reefs, rather than building walls against floods and rising seas, according to a technical report published by Wealth Accounting and the Valuation of Ecosystem Services (WAVES). Titled ‘Managing Coasts with Natural Solutions: Guidelines for measuring and valuing the coastal protection services of mangroves and coral reefs,' the report aims to demonstrate to an array of decision makers how important mangroves and reefs are as a first line of defense to natural disasters.

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Event: UNEP Special Session on Environment and Human Health [viewed]

At this special session, UN Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director Achim Steiner will introduce the report, ‘Healthy Environment, Healthy People,' on the sidelines of the 2nd Open-ended Meeting of the Committee of Permanent Representatives (OECPR) to UNEP, to be held 15-19 February 2016. The 2nd OECPR to UNEP is focused on furthering the environmental dimension of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and addressing the environment-health nexus. The report will be formally launched at the 2nd UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-2) to be held in May 2016.  

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Guest Article #54: IPBES to Release its First Assessment Report on Pollinators, Pollination and Food Production [viewed]

A bit of history

The Intergovernmental Science Policy Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) was established in Panama in 2012 by over 100 governments. The aim of IPBES, like its older sister the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), is to critically review available knowledge and to provide this knowledge to policy makers, in response to their request, in order to inform decision making. The focus of IPBES is on biodiversity and ecosystem services.

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Policy Update #17: Living in Harmony with Nature to Transform Our World: The CBD's Contribution to SDG Implementation (Part II) [viewed]

Part II: The Role of CBD National Reporting for Integrated SDG Implementation

Next to bottom-up implementation, another key feature of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is integration. The targets under the SDGs deliberately refer to multiple goals and different issue areas to facilitate mainstreaming across sectors and policy coherence in implementation. The second installment of this two-part policy update explores how implementation action and reporting under the CBD Strategic Plan can support this objective.

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December 2015-February 2016 NAMA Update [viewed]

nama_update14 February 2016: This update provides information about individual nationally appropriate mitigation actions (NAMAs) by developing countries, and related support, publications and events for the period from December 2015 to mid-February 2016. During this period, NAMAs registered as seeking support included ones on rural electrification in the Gambia and efficient use of biomass in Georgia. NAMAs in the Lao People's Democratic Republic (PDR), Vanuatu, Peru, Colombia, Kenya and China received support. Several reports, guides and other publications on NAMAs were also launched during this period.

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FOREST EUROPE Publishes Expert Studies on Forest Genetic Resources [viewed]

foresteuropeFebruary 2016: The European Forest Genetic Resources Programme (EUFORGEN), operating in the framework of FOREST EUROPE, has published a series of studies on genetic conservation, genetic monitoring, use and transfer of forest reproductive material, forest genetic resource conservation in the climate change context, and policy implications.

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Policy Update #16: Living in Harmony with Nature to Transform Our World: The CBD's Contribution to SDG Implementation (Part I) [viewed]

Part 1: The CBD Strategic Plan 2011-2020 and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets

Bottom-up implementation – the principle whereby countries select their own targets, strategies and reporting modalities for implementation – is a key feature of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

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CIFOR Publication Explores Impacts of Land-Use Changes in Tropical Landscapes [viewed]

agrarian_change_tropical_landscapesFebruary 2016: A new publication, titled ‘Agrarian change in tropical landscapes,' documents the results of a research project that explored what happens when significant environmental change occurs in forested tropical landscapes, primarily driven by agricultural development. Coordinated by the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), a member of the CGIAR Consortium, the Agrarian Change project conducted in-depth studies of seven landscapes around the world that exhibit various scenarios of changing forest cover, agricultural modification, and integration with local and global commodity markets.

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