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SBSTTA 11 Recommendation XI/1

Biological diversity of dry and subhumid lands

The Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice recommends that the Conference of the Parties,

Recognizing the need for adequate technical, institutional and financial capacities for the implementation of the programme of work, and

Emphasizing the importance to continue to strengthen collaboration with relevant partners, in particular the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification,

1. Notes the progress made in the implementation of the programme of work on the biodiversity of dry and sub-humid lands, as reported in the note by the Executive Secretary (UNEP/CBD/SBSTTA/11/4) and the information document on review of implementation of the programme of work (UNEP/CBD/SBSTTA/11/INF/7);

2. Recognizes that a major shortcoming in the current review has been the limited availability of recent information on each of the activities of the programme of work, including the insufficient number of third national reports submitted until the time of this review;

3. Further recognizes the usefulness, for the review of the programme of work on the biodiversity of dry and sub-humid lands at the national level, of information contained in national and regional action plans under the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification;

4. Also recognizes, for a global status of implementation of the programme of work on the biological diversity of dry and sub-humid lands, the usefulness of the national reports submitted under the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification and under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, as well as relevant reports submitted in the framework of other programmes of work under the Convention on Biological Diversity and biodiversityrelated agreements and conventions, in particular the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna, the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance Especially as Waterfowl Habitat (Ramsar, Iran, 1971), particularly in view of the fragile and ephemeral nature of wetlands in drylands, and the World Heritage Convention;

5. Notes relevant recommendations by the Open-Ended Working Group on Review of Implementation of the Convention and other initiatives on the streamlining and harmonization of national reporting and on the reviews of implementation of the Convention and its programmes of work;

6. Further notes the progress made in the implementation of the joint work programme with the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, encourages in particular the strengthening of the synergy between the two conventions in implementing the joint programme of work and harmonizing national reporting, and, accordingly, requests the Executive Secretary to fully promote the implementation of the programme of work and the joint work programme with the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, including in the context of the International Year of Deserts and Desertification, in 2006;

7. Takes note of the status and trends of, and threats to, the biodiversity of dry and subhumid lands as described in the note of the Executive Secretary (UNEP/CBD/SBSTTA/11/4) and the related information documents;

8. Recognizes the need for a more comprehensive assessment of the status and trends of, and threats to, the biodiversity of dry and sub-humid lands while recognizing that the lack of precise information should not prevent implementation of targeted activities of the programme of work;

9. Recognizes the need for the systematic collection of biodiversity data at all three levels (genetic, species and ecosystem) and across all representative biomes of the programme of work on the biological diversity of dry and sub-humid lands as a basis for decision-making on the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity of dry and subhumid lands and to facilitate the assessment of progress towards the 2010 targets and other global goals, with due respect to national legislation on access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing and relevant provisions of the Convention on Biological Diversity;

10. Encourages Parties, other Governments and relevant organizations to improve national, regional and global data on dry and sub-humid lands ecosystem goods and services, their uses and related socioeconomic values; on species at lower taxonomic orders including soil biodiversity; and on the threats to which dry and sub-humid lands ecosystems are subjected in view of the ongoing assessment of progress towards the 2010 targets and other global goals;

11. Also encourages Parties, other Governments and relevant organizations to strengthen implementation of relevant sectoral and cross sectoral plans and programmes in order to conserve dry and subhumid lands ecosystem goods and services, and to respond to the threats to the biodiversity of dry and subhumid lands in view of the important role it plays in poverty alleviation and in achieving the Millennium Development Goals, taking into account the findings of the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment;

12. Requests the Executive Secretary to continue developing and strengthening collaboration, in the framework of the annex to decision VII/2, with other organizations, institutions and conventions as a way to streamline many of the activities contained in the programme of work, promote synergies and avoid unnecessary duplications;

13. Recognizing that the review of the implementation of the programme of work identified constraints at national, regional and global levels that need to be addressed to meet the objectives of the Convention, encourages Parties, other Governments and relevant organizations to develop or implement activities, such as capacity-building and national, subregional, regional and global partnerships, that will facilitate and streamline implementation of the programme of work, and overcome the identified obstacles, and accordingly, requests the Executive Secretary to support these initiatives including by compiling and disseminating through the clearing-house mechanism, lessons learned and success stories on such activities in the implementation of programmes and projects on the biodiversity of dry and subhumid lands;

14. Notes the importance of activities 7 (f) (in situ and ex situ conservation), 8 (a) (strengthening local institutional structures), 8(b) (decentralization of management), 8 (d) (bilateral subregional cooperation), 8(e) (policies and instruments) and 9 (sustainable livelihoods), which are identified as facilitating conditions for the implementation of many other activities, and, accordingly requests Parties, other Governments and relevant organizations to give particular attention to supporting the scaled-up implementation of these activities;

15. Requests the Ad Hoc Open-ended Inter-Sessional Working Group on Article 8(j) and Related Provisions of the Convention on Biological Diversity to further develop indicators of trends of traditional knowledge, innovations and practices for indigenous and local communities dependant on dry and sub-humid lands and to identify ways and means to enhance their contribution to the implementation of the programme of work;

16. Requests the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, recalling in particular decision VII/15, paragraph 13, to develop proposals, for the consideration of the Conference of the Parties, on the incorporation of climate-change considerations into the programme of work on dry and sub-humid lands, in particular in activities 1 and 2 (climate change as a threat to dry and sub-humid land biodiversity), activity 4 (particularly on potential impacts of climate change on biodiversity, the role of biodiversity in maintaining the resilience of dry and sub-humid lands to climatic variability, including prolonged drought, and other natural events, and the use of dry and sub-humid lands biodiversity in adaptation measures), 7(i) (integration of climate change considerations in training and education programmes) and 7(m) (consideration of dry and sub-humid lands by the Joint Liaison Group of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification and the Convention on Biological Diversity);

17. Further requests the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice to complete, in accordance with the annex to decision VII/2, the assessment of the status and trends of the biodiversity of dry and subhumid lands;

18. Requests the Executive Secretary, in support of this assessment, and in collaboration with relevant organizations and conventions, in particular the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification, and Land Degradation Assessment in Drylands (LADA), taking into account the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, to present proposals for consideration by the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice on:

(a) Processes for gathering the information required from Parties, other Governments, and organizations for a comprehensive globallevel assessment of the status and trends of dry and subhumid lands biodiversity, including baseline information needed for assessing trends of biodiversity within the framework of the 2010 targets;

(b) How to review ongoing and planned assessments in dry and sub-humid lands and facilitate the application within these assessments of biodiversity indicators adopted in decision VII/30; and

(c) Land-use options that promote biodiversity, with a view to generating income for indigenous and local communities.

  • United Nations
  • United Nations Environment Programme