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CARICOM Delegates Participate In COP 15 Side Events

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CARICOM delegations are participating in side events at the Fifteenth Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (COP 15) that is now underway in Montreal, Canada.

The Conference, from December 7-19, is being held under the Presidency of China.

Delegates from the Caribbean Community have attended an event that the Africa, Caribbean and the Pacific States (ACP) Multilateral Environmental Agreement (MEAs3) programme and its partners convened to present the key activities and initiatives of the capacity-building related to the programme that is currently in its third phase of implementation.

The ACP MEAs is a partnership programme between the European Union and the United Nations Environment Programme which began in March 2009 as an initiative of the European Commission to address challenging environmental issues through the implementation of the MEAs in ACP regions.

The programme is aimed at assisting the ACP countries to enforce and comply with MEAs related to biodiversity (CITES, CMS and CBD) and chemicals and waste (Basel, Rotterdam, Stockholm and Minamata Conventions) and deal with issues of Ocean/Seas governance through regional seas conventions, such as the Abidjan, Nairobi, Cartagena and Noumea Conventions.

The CARICOM Secretariat presented some of the key activities and initiatives in support of the CBD and the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, and related targets undertaken by the ACP MEAs 3 Project in CARICOM.

The preparatory process included training sessions to review the COP15 agenda and to identify and analyse agenda items and related issues that are most relevant to national and regional interests.

CARICOM Delegate, Mr Eavin Parry, Environmental Scientist in the Department of Environment in Saint Kitts and Nevis, provided insights on how the support of the ACP MEAs Project has made a difference in his country’s preparations for the negotiations processes; in understanding the CBD COP agenda; and in agreeing on regional priorities, red lines and areas for capacity development.

Mr. Parry stated that “the training was a timely refresher in MEAs negotiations, including the art of drafting statements and interventions. This assisted the Saint Kitts and Nevis Delegation with our familiarity with the development of CBD issues through the years with an understanding of how developed and developing countries operate in these conditions.

He said the workshop was an ideal opportunity to allow exchanges of views between regional delegates about key COP15 issues, desired outcomes and potential negotiating strategies.

“The training workshop further included discussions on Caribbean ACP priorities for the GBF including: Digital Sequence Information (DSI) and Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS), Resource mobilisation and financing, Ocean resource management, Means of Implementation including capacity building, technology transfer and scientific and technological transfer.

The discussion also included the integration of SIDS special circumstances in elements of the GBF Goals and Targets.

Additionally, the Synthesis Document prepared by CARICOM, with support from the ACP MEA Project, has proven to be a very useful reference resource both during the preparatory stage and currently during the negotiation process.”

CARICOM delegates also participated in the side event that the UNEP and CBD Secretariat organised, and which dealt with strengthening the science-policy interface in support of the CBD. The forum explored the emerging science/ policy landscape and shared experiences on science-based policy making in the context of biodiversity management.

Actions on strengthening implementation of the post-2020 GBF were also recommended during the event.

The Global Environment Facility (GEF) support provided to the development and implementation of biodiversity finance plans were highlighted in an evening session.

This event discussed approaches for increasing the mobilization of domestic resources for biodiversity and sharing experiences of countries such as Belize, on implementing biodiversity finance plans, using the BIOFIN and other methodologies.

SOURCE: CARICOM Today

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