Shift in Societal Values Needed to Address Biodiversity Loss — Global Issues

Scientist Marla Emery speaks to decision-makers at the “Science Day” of the Biodiversity Conference in Montreal. Credit: Juliet Morrison/IPS
  • by Juliet Morrison (montreal)
  • Associated Press Service

Decision-makers gathered on the opening day of the 15th United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity to “science day” to learn about the science underpinning GBF goals and targets beyond 2020. Held shortly before the opening of COP15, the event allowed attendees to hear from experts. on the impact of biodiversity issues under negotiation.

Opening the event, David Cooper, Executive Deputy Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity, emphasized the importance of scientific understanding to inform the COP15 negotiations.

“We have noticed a growing interest among parties to get good scientific advice. It’s extremely important for the scientific community to clarify some concepts and see how we can create a framework in which actions and goals are consistent with goals.”

During the first half of the panel, scientists discussed the findings from the Intergovernmental Science Policy Platform’s reports on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) and the relevance their contribution to the Post-2020 COP15 Global Biodiversity Framework. A common theme throughout the presentations was the need for transformative change in the way policymakers address biodiversity. learn.

Sandra Díaz, Co-Chair of the IPBES Global Assessment Report on Biological and Ecosystem Services, emphasizes the importance of focusing on the economic and social aspects of diversity loss. biological—in addition to environmental factors—for transformative change to occur.

“Solutions that target only one of these factors, nature alone or driver only, will not suffice. What is needed is for the whole change to be transformative, to change the underlying system through these ecological, social and environmental actions,” said Díaz.

Mike Christie, Review Co-Chair of the Methodological Review of the Values ​​of Diversity and Valuation of Nature, emphasizes that a radical shift in social values ​​is also needed to protect biodiversity. learn.

He said that society’s overemphasis on material and personal interests has led to the loss of the value of nature.

“We are currently focusing on a narrow set of values ​​that is market value—think, “I buy, you sell. That leads us down an unsustainable path. If we want truly transformative change, we need to change social norms; we need to change institutions and make sure we are sustainable to get results.”

Christie added that the insights that IPBES have developed based on considering diverse values ​​in decision-making can aid the implementation of the Global Biodiversity Framework as they highlight the benefits of stakeholder engagement and addressing power dynamics.

Among those identified as key stakeholders in biodiversity issues are indigenous peoples. Marla Emery, Co-Chair of the Sustainable Use of Wild Species Assessment Report, explains that their use of wild species through hunting, gathering and logging helps maintain biodiversity. high school.

She emphasizes that this is due to Indigenous people’s unique orientation towards nature.

“The practices of indigenous peoples and local communities are based on knowledge and worldview. They are very diverse, but they have something in common with regard to the use of wild species and the relationship of humans and other parts of nature, and that is the focus, priority on respect, back and responsibility in all those commitments.”

The scientists also discussed the monitoring framework of COP15, which is being developed along with its goals and objectives. They highlighted a number of issues in the draft framework, including gaps in national capacity for certain indicators and the need to collect additional data on biodiversity.

Andy Gonzales, Co-Chair of the Biodiversity Observation Network (Geo Bon) Earth Observation Group, outlined several important steps to make the monitoring framework more effective. These include investing more in biodiversity monitoring and sharing knowledge across borders. He notes that the species profile currently covers less than 7% of the world’s surface, and most of this data is from North America and Europe.

“Biodiversity change knows no borders, so if we want to understand the detection and attribution of causes and drivers, we need to work across borders to gain a global and area of ​​change.”

Throughout the workshop, scientists urged decision-makers to listen to their findings on biodiversity loss and take action during COP15.

“The science is there. There’s no reason to ignore science,” Christie said, summarizing her remarks. “You as decision makers in the conference have a responsibility to listen to the science. Bring some of our ideas that we have left to you in the global convention on biodiversity so that we can really tackle the biodiversity crisis and the climate crisis and ensure a sustainable future.”

Report of the UN IPS Office

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© Inter Press Service (2022) — All rights reservedOrigin: Inter Press Service


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