The 13th Conference of Parties to the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS COP13) concluded on Saturday with the conference adopting Gandhinagar Resolution calling on the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity that the latter’s proposed post-2020 global biodiversity framework include a clear commitment for international, regional, bilateral and transboundary cooperation for its implementation and for improving ecological connectivity.
“Achieving ecological connectivity and the implementation of CMS and other biodiversity-related instruments requires international cooperation and partnerships among States and all relevant actors and (CMS) calls for the post-2020 global biodiversity framework to include a clear commitment for international, regional, bilateral and transboundary cooperation for its implementation and for improving ecological connectivity,” read the Declaration adopted by the plenary of the CMS COP13.
COP13 was formally inaugurated by Prime Minister Nanredra Modi on Monday even as pre-event programmes had started from 15th onward. Minister of State for Environment, Forest and Climate Change, Babul Supriyo chaired the the COP13 plenary on Saturday. In the run up to the COP13, CMS also conferred on India the Champion of Migratory Species award for joining its small grants programme and committing to keep its development projects wildlife-friendly.
The CMS resolved to transmit the Gandhinagar declaration to the open-ended working group of the CBD on the post-2020 GBD framework, the United Nations high-level summit on biodiversity to be held in September this year in New York and to the 26th session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change to be held in Glasgow in November this year.
The Declaration affirmed that a commitment to maintaining and restoring ecological connectivity is one of the top priorities for CMS, especially for the conservation and sustainable management of migratory species and their habitats, and called for ecological connectivity and the important role of CMS Family in this regard to be effectively reflected in the post-2020 GBD framework.
CMS is the global body working for conservation of migratory species of wild animals and functions under the aegis of the United Nations Environment Programme.
The Declaration also called on Parties and non-Party nations to “to ensure that the post-2020 global biodiversity framework effectively addresses the conservation needs of endangered species and species with an unfavourable conservation status, whose survival is a key indicator of sustainable development.”
Emphasising that the post-2020 GBD framework will be of little value if it is not followed by strong implementation and supported by adequate means of implementation, the Declaration suggested that post-2020 GBD framework recognise the role of the various biodiversity-related Conventions as well as other relevant Multilateral Environmental Agreements, for effective implementation, monitoring, and review of the post-2020 GBD framework.
It also suggested that the proposed framework consider the status of migratory species by any species index such as Red List Index, Living Planet Index and Wild Bird Index as a potential indicator of progress towards achieving the framework, including goals and targets on ecological connectivity.