COP15 + Global Agreement Reached to Protect Nature!
WHAT IS COP15?
This month, the EDL and its founder, Nina-Marie Lister, had the pleasure of attending the 7th Summit COP15 alongside our partners at ARC Solutions, as well as many Subnational Governments, and cities, that have made nature positive commitments and have demonstrated real action for biodiversity!
The Summit took place in Montréal, Québec, Canada, and focused on green infrastructure and ways that we can better connect people to nature, by also taking action for biodiversity, and centered around themes to Engage, Influence and Act.
WHAT DOES IT MEAN FOR BIODIVERSITY?
Agreement on the 30×30 Target:
At COP15, more than 190 countries have adopted an agreement to protect nature! The 30×30 agreement outlines commitments, along with funding, for all 23 targets of the ‘Convention on Biological Diversity’ or CBD — now called the ‘Global Biodiversity Framework,’ or GBF.
The ambitious GBF was finalized during the early hours of December 19th. The targets are aimed at halting the biodiversity crisis, with emphasis on Indigenous Peoples’ rights and recognition, as well as a pledge to protect 30% of land and oceans by 2030. According to the Globe and Mail, “if fully implemented, the newly adopted global biodiversity framework would guide conservation efforts through the end of the decade with the aim of seeing species and ecosystems recover in all regions of the globe by mid-century,” (2022, par. 2).
The 30×30 target also places the rights of Indigenous communities at the core of conservation. The agreement clearly stipulates that Indigenous communities must not only be included, but also be part of leadership in conservation – another significant achievement, as past targets have failed in large part due to the little or nonexistent recognition for the essential leadership of Indigenous Peoples, whose traditional territories are rich in biodiversity.
With countless cities in agreement across the globe, the 30×30 agreement represents a huge achievement for biodiversity! Now, it is our responsibility to hold our leaders accountable. Full engagement from our elected leadership, AND Indigenous leadership is crucial for meaningful change, as well as equitable and protected spaces, which will bring the 30×30 target into fruition.
The EDL attended COP15, in support of the State of California, as a partner of ARC Solutions – who are part of the technical advisory team to the visionary Wallis Annenberg Wildlife Crossing in Los Angeles. The EDL was one of many organizations who contributed with Caltrans to build the Wallis Annenberg Wildlife Crossing – the world’s largest – aimed at providing safe passage for mountain lions and other wildlife species, across the 101 Highway outside of Los Angeles. This wildlife crossing broke ground on Earth Day, April 22, 2022, and represents a milestone achievement in connecting landscapes for habitat protection across the state, residing in one of the world’s major cities to boast. The project serves as a global model for wildlife conservation and was recently named #15 on PMI’s 50 Most Influential Projects of 2022, alongside the Webb Space Telescope and the Human Genome Project (Project Management Institute Inc., 2022).
California has further deepened its commitment to wildlife crossings and corridors as a critical biodiversity strategy. At COP15, members of California’s delegation shared how this project, and investments in additional wildlife crossings, can not only protect biodiversity, but also prevent species extinctions, and support both the State of California and the United States federal government’s 30×30 conservation initiatives.
The EDL, and its founder, Nina-Marie Lister, are proud and excited to support this work, together with their incredible team and our partners, including ARC Solutions, Living Habitats, and the NWF education Programs and many more! Over the coming months, California will see new wildlife crossing projects reconnecting landscapes across the State. The EDL will continue to work on protecting, sustaining, and enhancing healthy urban nature through work on green infrastructure – including green roof, green streets, bird safe building policies and bylaws for biodiversity. We will also continue to partner with the California team to deliver more wildlife crossings across the state, as part of California’s 30×30 implementation plan.
ADDITIONAL READING AND RESOURCES: