Member States adopt ambitious position on global biodiversity negotiations

Posted on 24 October 2022

EU Environment Ministers commit to halt and reverse biodiversity loss for achieving a nature-positive world by 2030.
EU Environment Ministers today agreed on their position on the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF), pledging measurable and time-bound long-term 2050 goals, as well as 2030 intermediate outcomes and action-oriented 2030 targets. With this position, EU’s Environment Ministers signal their commitment, six weeks ahead of the UN Biodiversity Conference (COP15) in Montreal, to work with global parties to agree on a comprehensive and ambitious GBF commensurate with the scale and urgency of the existential biodiversity crisis.

“The Council’s position on the Global Biodiversity Framework post-2020 is positive. Halting and reversing biodiversity loss for a nature-positive world by 2030 is the right level of ambition. However, to achieve this, the EU must increase its ambition on addressing the drivers of biodiversity loss and agree to halve the global footprint of production and consumption by 2030, remaining within planetary boundaries afterwards. The position will also need to be matched with the resources required for implementation,” said Guido Broekhoven, Head of Policy Research & Development, WWF International. “Now the EU must work with other countries at the highest level to agree a GBF that allows implementation of the framework to start immediately.” 

Having delivered a strong proposal for a Nature Restoration Law earlier this year, the European Commission has emphasised the EU’s role as global spearhead. This places great responsibility on the EU to lead negotiations on an ambitious GBF, yet credibility to do so depends on actions ‘at home’:

“Adoption of ambitious deforestation and restoration legislation is an important opportunity to enhance the EU’s ability to advocate for ambitious global restoration targets that cover all ecosystems. These targets must ensure that business and financial institutions immediately implement deforestation and conversion-free supply chains,” added Sabien Leemans, Senior Biodiversity Officer, WWF European Policy Office.

Despite the positives, the Council position merely aims to minimise rather than eliminate the negative impacts of harmful incentives, including subsidies. Also, more ambition is required to halt land and sea use change that negatively affects biodiversity. This should be achieved by 2030.

WWF encourages Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, to attend the CBD COP15 in person and send a signal of the highest ambition for a nature positive world by 2030. 
EU Environment Ministers agree on ambitious COP15 position
© Will Burrard-Lucas/WWF-US