There will be no future for humans, without a future for nature

Share this to :

Speech Delivered By: Juan Lucas Restrepo on behalf of CGIAR
Event: UN Biodiversity Conference, COP15, High Level Segment

Excellencies, Distinguished Guests, Colleagues, 

A large part of the scientific community expects the biodiversity crisis to be as severe a threat as climate change. One million of the planet’s 8 million species on Earth are threatened with extinction. As agriculture and food production covers 38 percent of the world’s surface, it is one of the major factors contributing, directly or indirectly, to biodiversity loss. But we must also recognize that there is great potential to ensure that agriculture becomes a positive contributor to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. As we gather here at COP15, amid a climate crisis, we have the opportunity to agree on concrete and accelerated evidence-based actions.

CGIAR stands ready to support governments to design and implement ambitious national biodiversity strategies and action plans. This requires building strong collaborations within countries, under what is now being called a whole of government approach.

Moving rapidly towards implementation of the new Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF) is crucial. And while this can seem challenging, there are existing proven approaches available, that can be adapted to different contexts in support of the implementation of the GBF. Our organization, with a footprint in more than 100 countries across the Global South, is ready to support these efforts. Our research can support in particular:

  • Halt the conversion of natural ecosystems to agricultural land, by improving the productivity, profitability and resilience of agri-food ecosystems through biodiversity friendly practices;
  • Shift towards biodiversity-friendly production practices, such as agroecological transitions, agroforestry, and regenerative agriculture that can not only help to regenerate ecosystems but also prevent further degradation;
  • Formulate transformative policies and interventions to promote markets that reward food producers for adopting biodiversity-friendly practices, and incentivize sustainable consumption models;
  • Devise and implement ambitious food system pathways compatible with the Plant Treaty and the Nagoya Protocol on access and benefit sharing in mutually supportive ways, as well as related to the generation and use of digital sequence information.

Ladies and gentlemen, each one of us sees the world in different ways and yet, as COP15 comes to its end, we are called to reach a consensus on the new Framework and ensure that all nations can access the public and private funds necessary for implementation, rapidly reducing their dependence on harmful environmental subsidies, and shifting them to support biodiversity friendly practices.

Biodiversity loss is a global crisis affecting all of us. We need to act together to build a prosperous future for all life on Earth. At the end of the day, our lives, as human beings, depend on the nature that surrounds us. There will be no future for humans, without a future for nature.

Thank you.

Share this to :