2014 IUCN World Parks Congress launches dialogue on biodiversity offsets

IUCN World Parks CongresssHeld once every 10 years, the 2014 World Parks Con­gress in Novem­ber 2014 attracted 6,000 par­tic­i­pants from 170 coun­tries, and secured more than 70 new major con­ser­va­tion com­mit­ments, includ­ing Gabon’s promise to pro­tect 23% of its coast­line, and the Elion Foun­da­tion and UNCCD’s pledge to plant 1.3 bil­lion trees along the his­toric Silk Route. Hosted by Aus­tralia, the Con­gress explored eight dif­fer­ent themes and four cross-cutting issues, and fea­tured World Leader Dia­logues and hun­dreds of side events.

The out­comes of the Con­gress are cap­tured in the Promise of Syd­ney, which rec­og­nizes the impor­tant role of Indige­nous Peo­ples’ in the com­mu­nity and the oppor­tu­ni­ties pre­sented by new tech­nolo­gies to advance pro­tected areas con­ser­va­tion. More specif­i­cally, the Promise acknowl­edges the need to invest in nature’s solu­tions — sup­ported by pub­lic pol­icy, incen­tives, tools and safe­guards — that help to halt bio­di­ver­sity loss, and mit­i­gate and respond to cli­mate change.

IUCN’s Busi­ness and Bio­di­ver­sity team hosted 32 ses­sions in the Busi­ness and Bio­di­ver­sity Pavil­ion and at other venues, many of which were directly rel­e­vant to bio­di­ver­sity off­sets and the appli­ca­tion of the mit­i­ga­tion hier­ar­chy.This included:

  • Net Pos­i­tive Impact for Bio­di­ver­sity: an explo­ration in agri­cul­ture and forestry sectors
  • Land­scape approaches to Devel­op­ment and Conservation-the mit­i­ga­tion hier­ar­chy and bio­di­ver­sity offsets
  • Pro­tected Areas and Bio­di­ver­sity Offsets
  • Rio Tinto’s expe­ri­ence and lessons from appli­ca­tion of the mit­i­ga­tion hier­ar­chy, includ­ing net pos­i­tive impact, across its businesses
  • Imple­men­ta­tion of a mit­i­ga­tion hier­ar­chy: Chal­lenges and opportunities
  • IUCN Bio­di­ver­sity Off­set Pol­icy Consultation.

This last ses­sion pre­sented and dis­cussed the Bio­di­ver­sity Off­sets Tech­ni­cal Study and the two related input papers dis­cussed above. Steve Edwards, who is lead­ing the ini­tia­tive on off­sets for IUCN, gave an overview of the IUCN pol­icy con­sul­ta­tion itself and fielded ques­tions. Groups of par­tic­i­pants dis­cussed chal­leng­ing issues, such as“no-go” deci­sions, per­ma­nence, and addi­tion­al­ity. Side ses­sions included a debate on the appro­pri­ate­ness and poten­tial imple­men­ta­tion of off­sets in pro­tected areas. IUCN con­tin­ues to gather input for the pol­icy con­sul­ta­tion. For more infor­ma­tion on this topic see this arti­cle by Steve Edwards.

This infor­ma­tion was retrieved from the lat­est (May 2015) BBOP Newslet­ter.

See also my related posts on stud­ies that have been pre­sented on Bio­di­ver­sity Off­sets at the World Parks Con­gress here:


2014 IUCN World Parks Congress launches dialogue on biodiversity offsets — 1 Comment

  1. Pingback: Newsletter of the Business and Biodiversity Offset Programme, May 2015 - Biodiversity Offsets Blog

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