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SBSTTA 14 Recommendation XIV/17

XIV/17.Ways and means to improve the effectiveness of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice

The Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice
1.Requests the Conference of the Parties at its tenth meeting, taking into account Article 25 of the Convention on Biological Diversity, and the consolidated modus operandi of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice as contained in annex III to its decision VIII/10, to provide further clarification on the mandate of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice in paragraph 13 of its decision IV/16, regarding consideration of financial resources and guidance to the financial mechanism so that the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice is no longer impeded in dealing with financial issues and that it may be enabled to constantly improve the quality of its scientific, technical and technological advice to the Conference of the Parties;
2.Requests the Executive Secretary to provide an analysis of previous decisions of the Conference of the Parties, in particular decision VIII/10, to identify possible inconsistencies and duplications contained in the recommendations, to be addressed at the tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties;
3.Recommends that the Conference of the Parties at its tenth meeting adopt a decision along the following lines:
The Conference of the Parties
Recalling the consolidated modus operandi of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice contained in annex III to decision VIII/10 and, in particular, paragraph 4, which states that the Subsidiary Body shall endeavour to constantly improve the quality of its scientific, technical and technological advice by improving scientific, technical and technological input into, debate at, and work of, meetings of the Subsidiary Body,
Bearing in mind the future adoption of an updated and revised Strategic Plan and Multi-Year Programme of Work of the Convention on Biological Diversity in the tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity and noting other global developments in the field of biodiversity conservation and sustainable use, including ecosystem services [, in particular the proposals to establish synergies among the three Rio conventions].

Focal points for the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice

1.Requests the Executive Secretary to encourage Parties to designate national focal points for the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, taking into account the need to enhance the role of such national focal points in the implementation of the Strategic Plan of the Convention and for liaising with their counterparts in other biodiversity-related conventions and mechanisms to improve coherence between processes related to biodiversity and ecosystem services[, in particular the proposals to enhance synergies among the three Rio conventions];
2.Further requests the Executive Secretary to ensure that information on updated national SBSTTA focal points is immediately considered by the Secretariat so that communications are sent to appropriate contacts at the national level;
[3.Further requests the Executive Secretary to elaborate a format where national focal points for the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice can submit voluntary reports on the scientific and technical issues arising from the implementation of the Strategic Plan of the Convention in a manner that is in harmony with national reports so as to avoid increasing the reporting burden and to avoid duplication in reporting so as to allow for a meaningful review of its implementation which will serve as solid bases for action to be taken at the national, regional and global levels;]
OR
[3.Further requests the Executive Secretary to elaborate a format where Parties report on the scientific and technical issues arising from the implementation of the Strategic Plan of the Convention and to allow for a meaningful review of its implementation;]
[4.Urges the mobilization of human and financial resources for the submission of voluntary reports in particular in support of developing countries, in particular the least developed countries and small island developing States among them, as well as countries with economies in transition including for strengthening the clearing house mechanism; ] 18
5.Further requests the Executive Secretary, in collaboration with relevant partnerships, subject to availability of funds, to organize training workshops for SBSTTA focal points based on an assessment of their training needs, so as to assist Parties in implementing the three objectives of the Convention;

Preparations for meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice

6.Requests the Executive Secretary to ensure that notifications and invitations for SBSTTA meetings are issued well in advance to allow sufficient time for preparation and visa processing;
7.Further requests the Executive Secretary, subject to the availability of funds, to support regional meetings prior to meetings of the Subsidiary Body in collaboration with regional bodies and relevant processes, as soon as the documents become available, or else organize a two-day preparatory meeting may be organized at the same venue prior to the opening of the SBSTTA meeting;
8.Invites Parties and other Governments to encourage and support SBSTTA Bureau members and SBSTTA focal points to organize and coordinate online consultations to facilitate regional consultation on matters to be discussed at upcoming meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice;
9.Further requests the Executive Secretary, in collaboration with the members of the Bureau of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, to prepare a reference manual to serve as guidance for national focal points for the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, Bureau members and delegates, this reference manual should include a compilation of existing documents, inter alia an updated modus operandi (including new and emerging issues procedure), functions of SBSTTA national focal points and Bureau members, peer-review process for preparation of SBSTTA working documents, process of SBSTTA meetings and products, etc., and to make it available through the clearing-house mechanism and through CBD focal points, to be regularly updated;
10.Invites Parties and other Governments to encourage and support, in a timely manner, participation in meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, of developing countries especially the least developed countries, and small island developing States as well as countries with economies in transition;
[11.Encourages the Bureau of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, subject to the availability of funds, to convene joint meetings with the bureaus of the subsidiary bodies of the Rio conventions as well as with relevant biodiversity related conventions meetings to promote synergies and collaboration as per the relevant decisions of the Rio conventions; ] 19
12.Decides that requests addressed by the Conference of the Parties to the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice will be submitted with the provision of adequate financial resources;
[13.Decides to allocate the amount of US$ XXXXX 20 to the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice for the convening of two expert meetings during the biennium;]

Documentation for the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice

14.Recalling decision IX/29, paragraph 5, requests the Executive Secretary to streamline the texts of draft SBSTTA suggested recommendations and encourages Parties to make these recommendations as short as possible so that the actions required are clear;
[15.Further requests the Executive Secretary, subject to the availability of funds, to circulate documents such as the Technical Series, newsletters and other information documents of the Convention on Biological Diversity on a periodic basis as soon as they are prepared for publishing in all United Nations languages as well as circulate information documents for meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice in advance of those meetings in all United Nations languages in order to facilitate the dissemination of knowledge as well as ensure a more comprehensive scientific review of these technical documents;]
16.Further requests the Executive Secretary to make available executive summaries for information notes introduced under items on the agenda of meetings of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice;
17.Invites Parties and other Governments to actively participate in the peer-review process for documents of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice;

Mandate of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice

[18.Requests the Subsidiary Body to keep the status of biodiversity under constant review according to its mandate and to provide technical and scientific recommendations in particular regarding the implementation of the Strategic Plan for the period 2011-2020, including the drivers of loss of biodiversity [inter alia, climate change and invasive alien species,] so as to provide a solid scientific and technical basis for the implementation of the updated Strategic Plan;]
[19.Also requests the Subsidiary Body, in considering the issues before it, not withstanding the cross-cutting nature of some of the issues, to ensure that the Convention on Biological Diversity keeps within its mandate;]
20.Further requests the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice to take into account the need to focus, in particular its work on the scientific and technical aspects of the Strategic Plan of the Convention and the multi-year programme of work;
[21.Requests the Executive Secretary, in consultation with the Bureau to submit to the Conference of the Parties, at its eleventh meeting, the draft modus operandi on the relation between the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice and the intergovernmental science policy platform on biodiversity and ecosystem services (IPBES) when and if established to ensure complementarity and avoid duplication;]
OR
[21.Requests the Executive Secretary, and the Bureau of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice to submit to the Conference of the Parties, at its eleventh meeting, an updated modus operandi based on the present decision including the implications for the work of the Subsidiary Body arising from the Strategic Plan and the multi-year programme of work and the decision of the Conference of the Parties at its tenth meeting on the operations of the Convention as well as on the relationship between the Subsidiary Body and relevant scientific bodies and mechanisms;]

Links between the Conference of the Parties and the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice

22.Decides to try to reduce the number of agenda items to be considered by the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice or, if the agenda of the Subsidiary Body is to expand, to ensure the provision of adequate resources within the budget of the Convention; 21
23.Encourages the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice to submit, for the consideration of the Conference of the Parties, key messages on the status and trends of, and threats to biodiversity and its services, and in cases where different options are recommended for measures to be taken, provide the technical and scientific rationale behind the options, including a summary of the background and the individually assessed expected outcomes and implications of the suggested actions in the wider land and seascapes and sectors, and requests the Executive Secretary, in consultation with the Bureau of the Subsidiary Body, to include such information in documents prepared for meetings of the Subsidiary Body;
[24.In order to ensure a timely and adequate advice from the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice for the Strategic Plan for the period 2011-2020, also decides to take the necessary provisions to organize [two] regular meetings of the Subsidiary Body between meetings of the Conference of the Parties.]

18 SBSTTA notes that this recommendation has financial implications and is therefore subject to a decision by the Conference of the Parties. SBSTTA also wishes to refer to a list of all recommendations that have financial implications prepared by the Secretariat in accordance with paragraphs 11 and 12 of decision VIII/10.
19 UNFCCC decision 13/CP.8, paragraph 2; UNCCD decision 7/COP.5, paragraph 5 and decision 15/COP.6, annex 2.
20 SBSTTA requests the Executive Secretary to provide an estimate of the costs of such meetings.
21 SBSTTA notes that this recommendation has financial implications and is therefore subject to a decision by the Conference of the Parties. SBSTTA also wishes to refer to a list of all recommendations that have financial implications prepared by the Secretariat in accordance with paragraphs 11 and 12 of decision VIII/10.

  • United Nations
  • United Nations Environment Programme