Monday, October 6, 2014

Fiji calls for united global action to meet 2020 biodiversity targets

6 October 2014, Pyeongchang Korea, CBD COP12 - In 2010 a global strategic plan for biodiversity was agreed upon with targets, known as the Aichi Targets, to be met by 2020 to halt the rate of biodiversity loss.  In a newly launched Fourth Edition of the Global Biodiversity Outlook which provides a progress report on the state of global biodiversity today, governments were told that bold and innovative action is urgently required if the world is to meet these targets. 

Global Biodiversity Outlook 4 shows that three out of the 20 Aichi Targets are on track, with five of the targets needing much more effort and action.

In a statement to the floor at the 12th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity today, Fiji stressed their concern for the lack of progress and called upon global united action.

"Fiji is indeed happy to note that there has been significant progress towards meeting some components of the majority of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. The report states that some target components, such as conserving at least 17% of terrestrial and inland water areas, are on track to be met," stated Mr. Rahul Chand on behalf of the Government of Fiji.

"However Fiji remains concerned and worried that the progress seen may not be sufficient to achieve the target that has been set for 2020.  Despite Fiji taking several measures on a national level we may yet find it difficult to achieve the targets by 2020 however we remain optimistic and hopeful that we as a global family will do everything possible to stop the decline of our biodiversity."

Aichi Target 10 aims for the multiple anthropogenic pressures on coral reefs, and other vulnerable ecosystems impacted by climate change or ocean acidification are minimised so as to maintain their integrity and functioning by the year 2015.

According to the Global Biodiversity Outlook 4 Report, pressures from both land-based and marine activities continue to increase which makes it unrealistic to believe the target will be met by 2015 as agreed.  

The percentage of reefs rated as threatened increased by nearly 30% in the decade to 2007, the latest period assessed. Overfishing and destructive fishing methods are the most pervasive threats affecting around 55 percent of reefs.  One-quarter of reefs are affected by coastal development and pollution from land, including nutrients from farming and sewage.  Around one-tenth suffer from marine-based pollution.

This is just one of the summary of results of 20 Aichi Targets in all, featured in the Global Biodiversity Outlook 4 Report.

Mr. Rahul Chand, Fiji

"If we need to double our efforts and double our resource mobilisation then so be it," said Mr. Chand.

"The report notes dramatic increases in relevant activities, initiatives and necessary mechanisms put in place by Parties to halt biodiversity loss, yet extrapolations for a range of indicators suggest that based on current trends, pressures on biodiversity will continue to increase at least until 2020, and that the status of biodiversity will continue to decline.  That is not good news and we hope the key messages within the report provide a strong basis for our deliberations during the week."

The Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020, and its 20 Aichi Biodiversity Targets, were agreed by the international community in 2010 in Nagoya, Japan, and have since been re-affirmed by the United Nations General Assembly and at the Rio + 20 summit in 2012.

The Global Biodiversity Outlook 4 Report was launched today  at the CBD COP 12, one year before the halfway point of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011 - 2020.

The CBD COP 12 is from 6 to17 October in Pyeongchang, Korea.  14 Pacific island countries are party to the Convention on Biological Diversity with Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Palau, Solomon Islands, Tonga and Tuvalu currently in Korea attending the CBD COP12.  Soon to arrive are the Federated States of Micronesia, Samoa, Vanuatu and Papua New Guinea.

To download the full report please visit:
To read the full CBD Press release on the GBO 4:

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