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SBSTTA 13 Recommendation XIII/2

XIII/2. Review of implementation of the programme of work on forest biodiversity

The Subsidiary Body recommends that the Conference of the Parties at its ninth meeting adopt a decision along the following lines:

The Conference of the Parties,

[Welcoming] [Bearing in mind] the findings of the in-depth review of the programme of work on forest biodiversity and the work of the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on the Review of Implementation of the Programme of Work on Forest Biodiversity in preparation of the review,

Alarmed by the loss of forest biodiversity and its impacts, including negative impacts, on sustainable development and human well-being,

Recognizing the urgent need to strengthen implementation of the programme of work on forest biodiversity to reach the 2010 biodiversity target[s], in particular through sustainable forest management and also applying other tools such as the ecosystem approach, and noting the opportunities of the International Year of Biodiversity in 2010 and the International Year of Forests in 2011 to promote the conservation and sustainable use of forest biodiversity, and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the use of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge,

Recognizing also the need to promote full and effective participation of indigenous and local communities in the implementation of the expanded programme of work on forest biodiversity at all levels; also noting the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples,

Reiterating the need for increased support towards developing countries, in particular the least developed countries and small island developing States, as well as countries with economies in transition, in the implementation of the programme of work, through [the provision of adequate, predictable, and timely financial resources and new and additional resources, in accordance with Article 20 of the Convention], exchange of information, access to and transfer of technology, and capacity-building,

1. [Urges] [Invites] Parties to:

(a) Strengthen the implementation of the expanded programme of work on forest biodiversity by addressing, as necessary, the obstacles identified in the report of the review and reports associated with the programme of work on forest biodiversity, and address as a matter of priority major human-induced threats to forest biodiversity, including unsustainable use, climate change, desertification and desert creep, illegal land conversion, habitat fragmentation, environmental degradation, forest fires, and invasive alien species, as well as lack of monitoring systems, and impacts of extreme storms and hurricanes;

(b) Promote sustainable management of forests, including the management of non-timber forest products, and the management of, and valuation of, ecosystem services;

(c) Address obstacles to sustainable forest management, such as market access to value added forest products originating from sustainably managed forests;

(d) Improve forest-biodiversity monitoring, inventorying and reporting [at the national and international levels][, as appropriate];

(e) Strengthen efforts to establish, maintain and develop national or regional forest protected area networks and ecological connectivity, where appropriate, and identify areas of particular importance to forest biodiversity, taking into account the target of having at least 10% of each of the worlds forest types effectively conserved, as contained in decision VIII/15, as a contribution to the programme of work on protected areas, [and provide for sustainable financing of protected forest areas] [and explore possibilities for sustainable financing and innovative financial mechanisms for the establishment and the effective management of forest protected areas];

(f) Increase cross-sectoral cooperation and initiatives at all levels, to help carry out a coordinated implementation of both the CBD programme of work on forest biodiversity, and decisions set by the United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF), including the Non-Legally Binding Instrument on All Types of Forests, for the achievement of the 2010 target and the four Global Objectives on Forests, with the involvement of indigenous and local communities and other relevant stakeholders, including the private sector;

(g) Take into account [, as appropriate,] the goals and objectives of the programme of work, in addressing threats posed by invasive alien species, climate change, unsustainable use of bushmeat and its impacts on non-target species, and environmental degradation, in national[2]/ biodiversity strategies and action plans (NBSAPs), national forest programmes (NFPs) and other forest-related programmes and strategies;

(h) Promote multidisciplinary scientific research to better understand the impacts of climate change and environmental degradation on forest biodiversity and ecosystem resilience with a view to integrating forest biodiversity aspects into climate change [mitigation and] adaptation activities and degraded environment rehabilitation, with priority given to vulnerable forest ecosystems such as low-lying forests in small island developing States and other coastal areas, and arid and semi-arid regions, and high mountain forests in least developed countries, and in this context support the International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO)-led Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF) initiative on science and technology, and encourage their work on climate change research;

(i) Strengthen national and/or sub-national forest governance and national and/or sub-national forest law enforcement for the conservation and sustainable use of forest biodiversity, [and in particular natural forests];

(j) Implement sustainable forest management and [also applying other tools such as the ecosystem approach] [the ecosystem approach] to maintain [natural forests] [all forest types], promote forest restoration and minimize deforestation and forest degradation, as a major contribution to reduce [both] biodiversity loss [and greenhouse gas emissions in the context of the UNFCCC];

(k) [Strengthen forest governance and law enforcement, and further engage to prevent illegal and unauthorized harvesting of timber and other forest products and related trade, in close collaboration with the United Nations Forum on Forests, the World Bank, other members of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), and other relevant initiatives dealing with forest law enforcement, governance and trade; and also recognizing the positive role of/engage in approaches based on voluntary partnership agreements, such as the EU FLEGT Action Plan, and the value of the regional FLEG processes, as well as other additional options;]

OR

(k) [Strengthen forest governance and law enforcement and discourage forest products obtained from illegal and/or unsustainable management and their related trade, including for non-timber forest products, in close cooperation with regional forest law enforcement and governance processes, and other relevant regional and global processes, including the United Nations Forum on Forests and the members of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO), and the EU initiative on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT);]

(l) Fully involve and where appropriate, partner with the private sector and other relevant stakeholders, including indigenous and local communities, in the implementation of the programme of work, and encourage them to undertake efforts that reduce deforestation and forest degradation, including voluntary commitments [and agreements between private sector and non-governmental organizations,] [and increase afforestation and reforestation;]

(m) Promote national and international research on agro-forestry and use the results to identify and disseminate good practices that promote conservation and sustainable use of both forest and agricultural biodiversity;

(n) Take note of activities under the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, and [support] [welcome] the plan of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) to develop the Report on the State of the Worlds Forest Genetic Resources;

[(o) Initiate and/or further engage into [, where appropriate,] approaches for national and subnational forest governance and national and sub-national law enforcement, in accordance with their specific circumstances, in order to prevent illegal and unauthorized use of forest biological resources, including genetic resources, and related trade, in close collaboration with the United Nations Forum on Forests;]

(p) Recognize the potential role of consistent and appropriate [national] voluntary market based certification schemes and public and private procurement policies, which promote the use of legally and sustainably produced timber and non-timber forest products; and to encourage [, as appropriate,] the development, adoption and promotion of such measures, and enhance public awareness of these schemes and procurement policies;

(q) Increase awareness among consumers in developed and developing countries, and take measure to address the impacts of their unsustainable consumption patterns on forest biodiversity;

[(r) Reaffirm the need to apply the precautionary approach in accordance with principle 15 of the Rio Declaration on Environment and Development to the use of genetically modified trees;]

AND/OR

(r) [Develop, in consultation with relevant organizations, protocols for risk assessment for transgenic trees and guidance addressing socio-economic and cultural aspects of risks and benefits associated with the use of genetically modified trees;]

OR

(r) [Apply the precautionary principle to the use of genetically modified trees [and suspend any release of genetically modified trees pending sufficient and appreciable assessment of their potential impacts on forest biodiversity and on indigenous and local communities, including potential environment, cultural and socio-economic impacts; and until risk assessment criteria have been developed and findings reported to and agreed by the Conference of the Parties. In the interim, the matter should be referred to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety for consideration and advice;]]

OR

(r) [Note the results of the Canada-Norway workshop on risk-assessment for emerging applications of living modified organisms, and, given the scientific uncertainty regarding their potential environmental, socio-economic, cultural impacts, apply the precautionary approach [in accordance with principle 15 of the Rio Declaration] [as set out in the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety] to the use of genetically modified trees, [minimize the use of such organisms,] and undertake research to reduce the uncertainties associated with the use of this technology;]

[(s) Continue work on establishing processes and mechanisms for licensing and tracking timber to ensure that only legal timber products enter the markets;]

2. [Invites] [Urges] Parties, other Governments, and relevant international and other organizations to:

(a) Ensure that possible actions for reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries do not run counter to the objectives of the CBD and the implementation of the programme of work on forest biodiversity; but support the implementation of the programme of work, and provide benefits for forest biodiversity, and, where possible, to indigenous and local communities, and involve biodiversity experts including holders of traditional forest-related knowledge, and respect the rights of indigenous and local communities in accordance with national laws and applicable international obligations;

[(b) Address direct and indirect negative impacts that the production and consumption of biomass for energy might have on forest biodiversity, including on peatlands, and develop guidelines and standards, for the production of bioenergy, in particular biofuels, that consider such impacts;]

(c) Recognize the role of non-timber forest products for sustainable forest management and poverty eradication, and highlight their importance in poverty eradication strategies;

(d) Further develop knowledge on forest ecosystems services, and implement, as appropriate, innovative tools for securing such services, such as Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES) [that are not trade-distorting];

(e) Exchange information on the impact of pollution such as acidification and eutrophication related to deforestation and forest degradation on forest biodiversity and increase efforts to reduce their negative impacts;

(f) Promote forest restoration, including reforestation and afforestation, in line with sustainable forest management through, inter alia, the Global Partnership on Forest Landscape Restoration;

(g) Ensure that programmes and measures taken for the conservation and sustainable use of forest biodiversity support efforts to eradicate poverty and improve livelihoods;

(h) Strengthen cross-sectoral efforts for integrated approaches in order to increase consistency among the various levels of policies that affect forest biodiversity, taking into account the tool-kit developed by the Secretariat.

3. Requests the Executive Secretary to:

(a) Facilitate, as requested, in close cooperation with existing international, regional and subregional processes, initiatives and organizations, such as the Secretariat of the United Nations Forum on Forests, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the International Tropical Timber Organization, and other members of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests, regional, subregional and/or thematic workshops to support Parties in implementing the programme of work on forest biodiversity;

(b) [Liaise with the relevant institutions and forums to assess the impacts of biofuel production on forest biodiversity and forest-dependent indigenous and local communities and prepare a report on these impacts for consideration by the Conference of the Parties, subject to the decision of the Conference of the Parties on biofuels;]

(c) [Compile information on the impacts of bioenergy production and consumption, in particular biofuels, on forest biodiversity to inform [existing and emerging standards and certification schemes relating to the production and consumption of sustainable bioenergy] possible response measures for consideration by the SBSTTA and the Conference of the Parties;]

(d) Collaborate with the other members of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests, in particular the Secretariat of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the World Bank, in order to support Parties efforts to address reducing emissions from deforestation and forest degradation in developing countries;

(e) Enhance dissemination and exchange of information, and collaboration between the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological, the Secretariat of the United Nations Forum on Forests and other members of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests and other relevant organizations and processes;

(f) Explore, together with the Director of the UNFF Secretariat, possibilities for developing a work plan with targeted joint activities between the secretariats of the Convention on Biological Diversity and the United Nations Forum on Forests by identifying commonalities and complementarities of the respective work programmes and submit the results for the consideration of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice;

(g) Recognizing that a significant proportion of forests are wetlands, solicit advice from the Scientific and Technical Review Panel of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands on the relevance of the Ramsar-CBD joint work programme and the relevance of the suite of guidelines adopted by the Ramsar Convention, to the implementation of the CBD programme of work on forest biodiversity, and the role Ramsar Parties can play in contributing to the implementation of this programme, and make this information available to Parties;

(h) Exchange information on the relation between forest ecosystem resistance and resilience, forest biodiversity, and climate change, through the clearing-house mechanism and other relevant means;

(i) Continue the cooperation with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and other relevant organizations on the monitoring of forest biodiversity, and on clarifying the definitions of forest and forest types that reflect forest biodiversity at the level appropriate for reporting and monitoring the status of forest biodiversity, building on the existing concepts and definitions provided by Parties and members of the Collaborative Partnership on Forests and other relevant organizations and regional criteria and indicator processes and report to the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice prior to the tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties;

(j) [Request the Cartagena Protocol to develop, in consultation with relevant organizations, specific methodologies and specific protocols for generating data necessary to conduct risk assessment for transgenic trees, and guidance, addressing environmental, socio economic and cultural aspects of risks associated with the use of genetically modified trees;]

The Subsidiary Body further requests the Executive Secretary to forward the information note on the potential environmental, cultural and socio-economic impacts of genetically modified trees (UNEP/CBD/SBSTTA/13/INF/6) and the compilation of views on the Potential Environmental, Cultural and Socio-economic Impacts of Genetically Modified Trees (UNEP/CBD/SBSTTA/13/INF/7), recognizing that it did not assess them in detail at its thirteenth meeting, to ninth meeting of the Conference of the Parties for information.


Note:

2/: The context national includes subnational.

  • United Nations
  • United Nations Environment Programme