Implementation of the NBSAP
The main achievements of Uruguay’s first NBSAP adopted in 1999 include, among others: the adoption of the Law on the National Protected Areas System (2000); preparation of a list of ecosystems and species prioritized for conservation; biodiversity integration in the curricula of primary, secondary and technical (professional) education; development of a regulatory framework for land use planning, including environmental and biodiversity variables.
Uruguay has completed its updated NBSAP on the understanding that it is a dynamic process in the context of the CBD 2020 Aichi Biodiversity Targets. To date, progress has been achieved in developing national goals (through participatory consultation) and the national Clearing-house Mechanism (CHM). Work is currently being carried out on agreeing national targets, integrating biodiversity considerations in development frameworks and sectoral plans, ecosystem services valuation and promoting adaptation and ecosystem-based resilience. The Action Plan will focus on the National System of Protected Areas, invasive alien species, resource mobilization and a roadmap to advance the implementation of the Nagoya Protocol on ABS. Other actions will address reporting to related conventions, developing mechanisms for exchanging biodiversity information management (through initiatives such as GBIF) and for ensuring implementation and monitoring of activities.
Actions taken to achieve the 2020 Aichi Biodiversity Targets
Seven eco-regions were defined under the PPR project (Proyecto de Producción Responsable) carried out in 2010 which aimed to develop a responsible production model. Plans for these eco-regions were prepared based on environmental characteristics, assessed conservation values, pressures and threats.
A set of environmental indicators to support environmental management, based on the Pressure-State-Response model, has been developed.
The Committee on Invasive Alien Species is responsible for developing guidelines and specific actions in this area. In 2009, the Committee published the first preliminary list of invasive alien species and in 2010 published the Guidelines for the National Management of Invasive Alien Species. A workshop held in 2011 identified national priorities for the development of an action plan on invasive alien species. A database on invasive alien species has also been established.
A project is underway which aims to promote the sustainable use of natural resources to achieve greater variability and adaptation to climate change. Moreover, the Ministerio de Vivienda Ordenamiento Territorial y Medio Ambiente (MVOTMA) and the Ministerio de Ganaderia, Agriculturay Pesca (MGAP) are beginning to implement a REDD+ project with support from the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility, with the objective of developing a conservation strategy for native forests in relation to climate change.
An Action Plan will be developed to facilitate the participation of local communities and organizations representing indigenous peoples and Afro descendants in the implementation of the NBSAP, as called for under Article 8 (j) of the Convention.
Support mechanisms for national implementation (legislation, funding, capacity-building, coordination, mainstreaming, etc.)
Uruguay became a Party to the Nagoya Protocol on ABS on 12 October 2014.
In 2013, Uruguay adopted the Law on Responsible Fisheries and Promotion of Aquaculture, as well as the Law on Mining (Ley de Minería de Gran Porte). Adopted in 2008, the Law on Land Management and Sustainable Development has resulted in the adoption of 9 documents containing guidelines for Departments (Administrative Divisions), with another 10 documents in preparation. A draft Law on Biosafety has been developed and is currently being elaborated.
The creation of the National System of Protected Natural Areas was established by law in 2000 and regulated by Executive Decree in 2005. Protected areas currently comprise almost 1.24% of the continental territory and 0.68% of the marine territory. However, a recently-approved GEF project aims to strengthen the effectiveness of the national protected areas system, through the application of the landscape management approach, maintaining connectivity between ecosystems (inside and outside of protected areas). Marine protected areas and Rio de la Plata (including islands) currently comprise 16% of the total protected areas system. Uruguay has 2 Ramsar sites and 2 UNESCO Biosphere Reserves and 22 Important Bird Areas (IBAs). In 2013, Uruguay adopted a law designating its territorial waters as a “sanctuary for whales and dolphins” (the law also applies to the country’s Exclusive Economic Zone). Uruguay adopted in 2015 its Strategic Plan for the National System of Protected Areas for 2015-2020 in coordination with the updated NBSAP.
Uruguay published its First National Red List for Birds in 2012 and updated its List of Species Prioritized for Conservation in 2013 and the National Red List of Amphibians and Reptiles in 2015. A publication on the contributions of the Uruguayan Ecoregions to the National Biodiversity Strategy was presented during the celebrations for the International Day for Biodiversity in 2015. Uruguay also possesses a National Forest Inventory.
Biodiversity considerations have been mainstreamed in various sectoral plans, including, among others, the Manual on Best Agricultural Practices for Rainfed Agricultural Systems and the Sustainable Tourism Plan (2009-2020).
Progress has been achieved in the development of incentives for the conservation of natural grasslands in the Southern Cone, through a regional project implemented by the Southern Cone Grasslands Alliance.
Mechanisms for monitoring and reviewing implementation
A comprehensive mechanism for monitoring and reviewing NBSAP implementation does not yet exist however this issue will be addressed in Uruguay’s revised NBSAP.