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Virtual High Level Discussion on the International Day for Biological Diversity 2020


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020 has been named the “super year” for nature, as it envisaged a number of key high-level opportunities to enhance climate action, prevent further deterioration of nature and enhance actions to protect biodiversity over the next decade.  However, this ambitious global roadmap for 2020 has been overshadowed by the unprecedented crisis that the world is currently grappling with.

The COVID-19 pandemic exemplifies how negative human impacts on natural ecosystems can result in widespread humanitarian, social and economic consequences across the globe. The need to urgently enhance the protection of biodiversity is more apparent now than ever, particularly in the context where hunger and poverty are expected to rise. 2020 has become a year of reflection, opportunity and solutions - an opportunity for the world to incorporate nature and climate in recovery strategies.  It is an opportunity to “Build back better”. Therefore, although many of the planned meetings and events that have been part of the super year have been postponed, it is crucial not to lose the global momentum for urgent action on biodiversity.

In this context, the planned adoption of a new and ambitious post-2020 framework for the Convention on Biological Diversity at its Conference of the Parties (COP15), which will take place in Kunming, China, in 2021 remains of critical significance to ensure a robust and ambitious outcome from the COP, urgent actions are required to enable major transitions across whole economies and societies.

To enable this, a Summit on Biological Diversity will be held during the High-Level Segment of the UN General Assembly, on 22-23 September this year titled “Urgent Action on Biodiversity for Sustainable Development”. The objective of this Summit is to highlight the urgency of action at the highest levels in support of a post-2020 global biodiversity framework that contributes to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and places the global community on a path towards realizing the 2050 Vision for Biodiversity.

It is our hope that this event on International Day for Biological Diversity (22 May) can start our thinking on opportunities despite the current situation and ahead of the Summit, and inspire the international community to take the urgent action needed to solve the current nature crisis. This year’s theme “Our solutions are in nature” emphasizes hope, solidarity and the importance of working together at all levels to build a future of life in harmony with nature.


IDB 2020 HLM Sponsors



Welcome by H.E. Ms Mona Juul, Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Norway to the UN (moderator)


Opening statement by H.E. Mr Tijjani Muhammad-Bande, President of the United Nations General Assembly (Statement)


"The road to Nairobi, New York and China: Actions for Nature to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals", statement by H.E. Mr Sveinung Rotevatn, President of UNEA-5, Minister of Climate and Environment, Norway (Statement)


“Biodiversity: building blocks for resilience and inclusive development”, statement by H.E. Mr Carlos Manuel Rodríguez, Minister of Environment and Energy, Costa Rica  (Statement)


Setting the scene by Ms Elizabeth Maruma Mrema, Acting Executive Secretary, Convention on Biological Diversity


H.E. Ms Mona Juul, Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Norway to the UN (moderator)


H.E. Dr. Yasmin Fouad, President of COP14, Minister of the Environment, Egypt


H.E. Mr. Paulo Proaño, Minister of Environment, Ecuador (Statement)


H.E. Mr. Sergio Costa, Minister of Environment, Land and Sea, Italy


H.E. Dr. Hon. Omar Figueroa, Minister for Fisheries, Forestry, the Environment and Sustainable Development, Belize (Statement)


H.E. Lee White, Minister for Forests, Sea and the Environment and Climate Plan, Gabon


H.E. Gabriel Quijandría Acosta, Vice Minister of Strategic Development of Natural Resources Ministry of Environment, Peru (Statement)


H.E. Ms. Brune Poirson, Secretary of State to the Minister for the Ecological and Inclusive Transition, France


H.E. Hon. Mohammed Elmi, Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS), Ministry of Environment and Forestry, Kenya


H.E. Rodrigo A. Carazo, Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Costa Rica to the UN (Moderator)


H. E. Mr. Cui Shuhong, Representative of Minister of Ecology and Environment and Director-General of the Department of Nature and Ecology Conservation of the Ministry of Ecology and Environment, China (Statement)


Dr. Anne Larigauderie, Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES)


H.E. Kira Azucena, Charge d'Affaires, Permanent Mission of Philippines (Statement)


Mr. Marco Lambertini, Director General WWF (Statement)


Inka Gnittke, Head of Division International Cooperation on Biodiversity, CBD National Focal Point, Germany


Interventions from Member States

H.E. Mr. Silvio Gonzato, Deputy Head of Delegation, Delegation of the European Union to the United Nations


H.E. Mr. Mohamed Siad Doualeh, PR, Permanent Mission of the Republic of Djibouti


H.E. Ms. Bavdaž Kuret, PR, Permanent Mission of the Republic of Slovenia


H.E. Mr. Cosmos Richardson, PR, Permanent Mission of Saint Lucia


H.E. Mr. Alie Kabba, PR, Permanent Mission of the Republic of Sierra Leone


H.E. Ms. Elisenda Vives Balmaña, PR, Permanent Mission of the Principality of Andorra to the United Nations


H.E. Mrs. Egriselda González López, PR, Permanent Mission of El Salvador


H.E. Mr. Hoshino Toshiya, DPR, Permanent Mission of Japan


Mr Jyrki Terva, DPR, Permanent Mission of Finland


H.E. Mr Nagaraj Naidu, DPR, Permanent Mission of India


H.E. Tom Woodroffe, Ambassador, Permanent Mission of the United Kingdom to the United Nations



H.E. Rodrigo A. Carazo, Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Costa Rica to the UN (Moderator)