The UN Summit on Biodiversity
, taking place virtually today, saw Heads of State and Government recognize the world’s catastrophic loss of biodiversity, and the risk this places to human health and livelihoods - with many emphasizing that global pandemics are linked to the destruction and degradation of nature.
World leaders noted the lack of sufficient action in the last decade, and the urgent need to address biodiversity loss and place nature on a path to recovery. A number of countries came forward with commitments, but globally much more is needed to tackle our nature crisis.
Marco Lambertini, Director General of WWF-International, said:
“The commitments heard today from countries at the UN Summit on Biodiversity must be backed up with immediate action to protect nature and with an ambitious and transformative post-2020 global biodiversity framework next year*.
“Humanity is causing an unprecedented level of damage to our planet, with nature and biodiversity being lost at a shocking and dangerous speed. We are failing in our moral duty to coexist with nature, threatening biodiversity to the extent that it poses grave risks to our health, economy and livelihoods. Pandemics, wildfires, wildlife decline and climate change are all symptoms of our dangerously unbalanced relationship with the natural world.
“Ahead of the Summit, we saw more than 70 world leaders endorse the Leaders’ Pledge for Nature, sending a united signal to step up both global ambition for nature and action on the ground. We need all countries to join in the global effort to reverse the loss of nature for the benefit of people and planet by the end of this decade. This is imperative to achieve true sustainable development, and help build a carbon-neutral, nature-positive and equitable society.”
Today’s summit comes after WWF’s Living Planet Report
, launched in recent weeks, showed that global populations of mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and fish suffered an average two-thirds decline in less than half a century, while the United Nations’ Global Biodiversity Outlook 5 report revealed that, globally, governments failed to fully meet
any of the biodiversity targets set by the UN a decade ago. These reports were followed by unprecedented calls for urgent action
on nature from organizations representing hundreds of millions of individuals and a Leaders’ Pledge for Nature
in which more than 70 world leaders committed to reverse nature loss by 2030.
“Leaders must develop and agree on a shared plan for the biodiversity and climate negotiations scheduled for next year and now is the time to step up. WWF is calling for urgent action to set nature on the path to recovery by 2030, by ending the destruction of natural habitats, halting species loss, and most importantly, halving the footprint of our production and consumption. It is crucial that we build human and planetary resilience to future crises, and that is why a New Deal for Nature and People has never been more vital.”