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United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland - Overview

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The designations employed and the presentation of material on this map do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity or the United Nations concerning the legal status of any country, territory, city or area or of its authorities, or concerning the delimitation of its frontiers or boundaries.

Main References

National Website


Biodiversity Facts

Status and trends of biodiversity, including benefits from biodiversity and ecosystem services

The United Kingdom (UK) is four separate countries: England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, as well as 14 Overseas Territories and 3 Crown Dependencies (see below). The ‘metropolitan’ UK (England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland) has a diverse mix of habitats and species for its small size (approximately 240,000km2); with a marine area approximately 3.5 times the size of the land area... More »

Main pressures on and drivers of change to biodiversity (direct and indirect)

The key drivers of change across terrestrial biodiversity in the UK, as identified in the NEA, are habitat change (land-use/condition) and pollution. Other threats to UK biodiversity are over-exploitation, invasive species, and climate change. The main threats to the marine environment, as identified in Charting Progress... More »

Measures to Enhance Implementation of the Convention

Implementation of the NBSAP

The UK has overall responsibility for the environment and biodiversity but to allow conservation approaches to be tailored to the different environments each country has developed national biodiversity strategies which underpin the ‘UK Post-2010 Biodiversity Framework’:... More »

Actions taken to achieve the 2020 Aichi Biodiversity Targets

A suite of actions have been undertaken by the UK to achieve the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. The priority actions are set out in the UK Biodiversity Framework and the country strategies listed above. Progress and outcomes are being assessed using UK and country-level indicators, and annual reports on the UK Biodiversity Framework’s implementation plan... More »

Support mechanisms for national implementation (legislation, funding, capacity-building, coordination, mainstreaming, etc.)

The UK has a number of mechanisms to support national implementation; one important driver for mainstreaming is legislation which places a ‘statutory duty’ on all public bodies to have regard to biodiversity conservation. Each country has listed priority habitats and species which are the subject of the duty. Additionally, spatial planning legislation and policies include safeguards for biodiversity and ecosystems, as well as requirements for Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs) on some developments... More »

Mechanisms for monitoring and reviewing implementation

The UK recognises the importance of having an evidence-based approach and as such has collected a great deal of information about its biodiversity. One key source based on this information is the UK set of Biodiversity Indicators; these provide an effective means of assessing and communicating progress on implementation... More »

National Contacts

Full details of national contacts »

Convention on Biological Diversity

Mrs. Clare Hamilton
CBD Primary NFP, SBSTTA NFP, Protected Areas NFP
Mr. James Vause
Resource Mobilization FP
Ms. Diana Mortimer
CHM NFP
Ms. Chris Cheffings
GSPC NFP
Dr. Christopher Lyal
GTI NFP

Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety

Ms. Sarah Cundy
Cartagena Protocol Primary NFP, BCH NFP

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