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SBSTTA 16 Recommendation XVI/3

XVI/3.Island biodiversity: in-depth review of the implementation of the programme of work

The Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice
1.Welcomes the proposed initiative of island States and those Parties managing islands for research and conservation to organize an island summit on the margins of the eleventh meeting of the Conference of the Parties to highlight island leadership, progress and new commitments in implementing the programme of work on island biodiversity and achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets;
2.Recommends that the Conference of the Parties at its eleventh meeting adopts a decision along the following lines:
The Conference of the Parties,
Alarmed by the continued and ongoing loss of island biodiversity and the irreversible impacts of this loss for island peoples and the world, and acknowledging that 80 per cent of known species extinctions have occurred on islands and that more than 40 per cent of vertebrates currently threatened with extinction are island species2,
Acknowledging progress made in the development and implementation of national biodiversity strategies and action plans by small island developing States and least developed countries with islands and the support for this process provided by the United Nations Environment Programme/Global Environment Facility enabling activity project,
Noting that additional efforts and support are needed in order to fully engage relevant sectors of government and society, in particular indigenous and local communities and non-governmental organizations, for implementing and mainstreaming the programme of work on island biodiversity across all these sectors with a view to achieving the Aichi Biodiversity Targets of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020,
Aware that invasive alien species, climate change, and unsustainable development including unsustainable tourism are among the major drivers of biodiversity loss on islands with complex linkages that are best addressed by collaborative and integrated action with other sectors,
Also aware that biodiversity loss is not restricted to islands with human populations, but is also of major concern in many uninhabited or seasonally inhabited islands,
Also aware that sustainable management of marine, freshwater and terrestrial resources in islands is important to food security, adaptation to climate change, public health and livelihoods,
Respecting the traditional/cultural knowledge, skills and management measures that have helped island populations use and manage their environment and resources over many centuries, and, in that context, recognizing that the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from Their Utilization provides an important instrument to ensure that islands benefit from the use of their genetic resources,
Appreciating the continued strong commitment and progress achieved by Parties and their partners committed to voluntary island "challenges", especially the Micronesia Challenge, the Caribbean Challenge initiative, the Coral Triangle Initiative and the Phoenix Island Protected Area, which in turn inspired the development of the Western Indian Ocean Coastal Challenge and the Far West Africa Challenge, and the development of the Charter on the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Biological Diversity on European Islands3 under the Bern Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats and recognizing the value of high-level events and summits under these initiatives to galvanize political will and new funding arrangements and partnerships,
Recognizing the significant progress on sustainable financing mechanisms developed in island regions for climate change and biodiversity, including: the Micronesia Conservation Trust; the Mama Graun Conservation Trust Fund in Papua New Guinea; the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund; the European Parliament's Preparatory Action for a Voluntary Scheme for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in Territories of European Overseas (BEST); and emerging "debt for adaptation to climate change" swaps in islands,
Taking note with appreciation the activities of the Global Island Partnership (GLISPA) as a mechanism for implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity and a partnership under the United Nations Commission for Sustainable Development,
Reaffirming the importance of adopting and implementing adequate legislation to address conservation issues on islands as well as measures to enforce it,
Reiterating the need for increased international and national support for islands, in particular small island developing States, to implement the programme of work and strengthen local capacity by providing new and additional financial resources, in accordance with Article 20 of the Convention, and incentives,
1.Urges Parties, and invites other Governments, financial institutions and other relevant organizations to strengthen the implementation of the programme of work on island biodiversity and to build on successful island approaches by:
(a)Promoting and supporting high-level regional commitments, such as the island challenges referred to above and other large-scale efforts that have demonstrated success in rapidly increasing protected areas and other Aichi Biodiversity Targets relevant to the programme of work on island biodiversity;
(b)Adapting and expanding proven, cost-effective mechanisms to strengthen local capacity, particularly peer-learning networks, learning exchanges, transfer of technologies, sharing of lessons learned and best practices, communication and information exchange tools, targeted technical assistance, formal training and education;
(c)Consider developing innovative financial arrangements supplementary to Article 21 of the Convention to support long-term implementation of the programme of work on island biodiversity, including trust funds, debt for adaptation to climate change swaps, payments for ecosystem services, and fees on tourism or natural resource use dedicated to effective conservation;
(d)Maintaining and supporting key databases and information portals such as the Global Islands Database, the Threatened Island Biodiversity Database, the Database of Island Invasive Species Eradications, the Global Invasive Species Database, the Island Biodiversity and Invasive Species database, and SIDSNet to enable effective invasive species monitoring and eradication prioritization on islands, as valuable tools in support of the implementation of the programme of work;
2.Calls on Parties to continue to focus international attention and action on the six priorities included in decision IX/21 as they affect livelihood and island economies: the management and eradication of invasive alien species, climate-change adaptation and mitigation activities, establishment and management of marine protected areas, capacity building, access to, and fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources, and poverty alleviation, with particular attention to:
(a)Developing and strengthening regional and local collaboration to manage invasive alien species within and across jurisdictions, including the diversity of successful approaches to prevention, control and eradication where feasible, and to adopt a biosecurity approach that addresses the full range of invasive threats; and
(b)Mainstreaming ecosystem-based adaptation to climate change, ecosystem restoration and invasive species management for human health and well being into all island development and conservation plans and projects and build capacity in their application;
3.Also calls on Parties to:
(a)Accord priority to the management of terrestrial protected areas, including inland waters;
(b)Enhance regional and international cooperation with a view to addressing transboundary pollution that has significant impacts on island ecosystems, including through mitigating discharges from land-based sources, particularly areas with excess nutrient inputs;
(c)Support subnational implementation of the Convention in islands, by engaging subnational and local authorities through the Plan of Action for Subnational Governments, Cities and other Local Authorities for Biodiversity, adopted in decision X/22, and as informed by the assessment of the links and opportunities between urbanization and biodiversity (the "Cities and Biodiversity Outlook");
4.Encourages Parties, other Governments and relevant organizations to enter into partnerships across sectors to:
(a)Develop, disseminate and integrate appropriate tools and processes to apply findings of the study of The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) and other valuation tools to support decision making at the island level;
(b)Use the opportunity of revising national biodiversity strategies and action plans to further mainstream biodiversity conservation with other key sectors (e.g., mining, agriculture, fisheries, health, energy, tourism, integrated marine/coastal management, education and development) and to determine specific, measurable, ambitious, realistic and time-bound national targets, and related indicators, in line with the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, at the island level and within the context of domestic priorities;
(c)Coordinate these efforts with the process led by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN/DESA) to assess implementation of the Barbados Programme of Action and its associated Mauritius Strategy for Implementation;
(d)Explore possibilities of engaging national and local leadership in public-private partnerships and encourage participatory approaches for the sustainable management of natural resources;
5.Invites Parties to recognize and engage with the Global Island Partnership (GLISPA) as an effective partner to support implementation of the programme of work;
6.Takes note of the "Small Islands, Big Difference" campaign coordinated by Island Conservation on invasive alien species launched at the sixteenth meeting of the Subsidiary Body and invites Parties, other Governments and relevant organizations to engage with the campaign;
7.Requests the Executive Secretary to cooperate with international and regional organizations as well as relevant convention secretariats with a view to promoting coherent and harmonized national information systems related to the reporting needs of the biodiversity-related conventions, and for joint reporting as appropriate for small island developing States and least developed countries with islands;
8.Also requests the Executive Secretary, subject to the availability of funding, to enable regional and global technical support networks to help the ongoing review, updating and implementation of national biodiversity strategies and action plans in small island developing States and least developed countries with islands, in particular for developing national targets and for mainstreaming national biodiversity strategies and action plans into broader national plans, programmes and policies to implement the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020.

3T-PVS/Inf (2011) 8 revised, Bern Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats

  • United Nations
  • United Nations Environment Programme