International environmental agreements

Next to the CBD there is a multitude of international environmental agreements, some of them existing already longer than the CBD. They all have accept the leadership of CBD as it is the broadest conventions and is not restricted to a certain type of ecosystem or a geographical range. The other conventions cooperate in different ways with the CBD, be it in certain thematic fields, in formally agreed ways or on a case to case basis.

IPBES

The Intergovernmental Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) was founded in 2012 and has the goal to provide political decision makers with independent and reliable information on the state and development of biodiversity for informed decision making. The international secretariat is located in Bonn.

Relation to CBD:

IPBES is a source of information for the CBD. In the first working programme of IPBES (2014-2018) a global assessment on biodiversity and ecosystem services is foreseen which will also ivestigate how far the 2020-targets of CBD will have been reached. A formal coopeartion between IPBES and CBD is not yet established but the SBSTTA chair has observer status in important IPBES bodies.

Ramsar Convention

The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (since 1971) aims at the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources.

 

Relation to CBD:

The Ramsar Convention takes over tasks of the CBD work programme on biodiversity of inland waters. A Memorandum of Cooperation and a Joint Work Plan formally set the cooperation agreement.

 

 

UNCCD

The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), whose secretary is located in Bonn, was established in 1994 in Paris and became effective at 26th December 1996. It holds 193 Parties, including Germany and the European Union.
The Convention is a binding agreement of the parties for the encouragement of the sustainable use of natural ground resources (water, soil and vegetation) in dry areas, to prevent its degradation. The standard of living for inhabitants is supposed to stay equal or be increased thereby. This means, that additionally to its aim of environment protection, the convention also fights the neediness in affected countries.

Cooperation of the UNCCD and the CBD

As they all trace back to the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, which took place in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the UNCCD were summarized to the so called Rio Conventions. These three conventions cooperate in the Joint Liasion Group. Additionally there was a contact group founded between the UNCCD and the CBD in 2001, to foster the cooperation of these two environmental conventions.

UNFCCC

It is one aim of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to keep the concentration of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere on a level, which is not risky to our climate system. By doing this, it is supposed to be considerate that there are no negative effects for the food production. Additionally climate changes are supposed to take place that slowly, that ecosystems can adapt to the new circumstances without any damage.
The convention was adopted in 1992 in Rio de Janeiro and was joined by 195 Parties, so far. Within the framework of the convention the Koyoto Protocol and rules for the establishment of a REED (Reducing Emission from Deforestation and Degradation) were developed.

Cooperation of the UNFCCC and the CBD

Not just climate changes, but also arrangements for climate protection do affect the biodiversity. This is why, within the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) a program was developed, which deals specifically with the topics of climate changes and biodiversity. In consequence, a determined collaboration between these two environmental conventions would be very important, additionally to the Joint Liasion Goup of the Rio Conventions (CBD, UNFCCC and the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification- UNCCD). In the case of large scale production of energy plants e.g. the positve climate effects might be opposed by negative effects on biodiversity.

CMS

The Convention on Migratory Species - CMS aims at the conservation of threatened migratory species along all stages of their migration route.
The secretariat is located in Bonn.

Relation to CBD:

Migratory species often depend on conservation efforts in different states, e.g. in their breeding areas, along their migration routes and in wintering areas For the CMS as well as for the CBD goal to conserve biodiversity world wide the cooperation across national borders is extremely important.
The CBD work programme on protected areas provides many overlapping issues with the CMS, as does the programme on marine biodiversity. Many marine species migrate long distances, crossing coastal waters as well as marine areas beyond national jurisdiction. The formal cooperation between CMS and CBD is set out in a Memorandum of Cooperation and a Joint World Plan.

CITES

On 3rd March 1973 the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna ( CITES) was adopted and came into operation on 1st July 1975. So far 178 Parties have signed the convention, including Germany. Its secretary is located in Geneva, Switzerland.
Although the protection of wild animals and plants from being exploited by excessive international trade is the main aim of CITES, it is not an environmental convention, but a commercial agreement. This is based on the idea, that the sustainable use of wild flora and fauna will prevent their numbers to decrease, which will shelter these species from becoming extinct. Consequently future generations will be able to use these species as a natural resource.
Approximately 29000 plant species and 5000 animal species are listed as so called CITES Species in the three appendixes of the convention, which means that the number of individuals which can be used for traded is limited for these species.

Cooperation of CITES and CBD

The third goal of CITES is the preservation of biodiversity, which necessitate a cooperation with the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD). As unregulated trade of wild animals and products derived from them is a major threat to biodiversity and therefore any successful regulation under CITES also helps to implement the CBD. Together with the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), the Ramsar Convention, the International Treaty on Plant Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGR) and the World Heritage Convention of the UNESCO (WHC) CITES and CBE cooperate in the Liaison Group of Biodiversity- related Conventions. A memorandum of cooperation was signed between CITES and CBD.

AEWA

In the framework of the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), which takes care for the protection of migratory terrestrial, marine or avian species, the necessity for a treaty of the protection of migratory waterfowl was discussed. As a result of this, 1988 the African- Eurasian Waterbird Agreement (AEWA) was adopted. So far 71 Parties, including Germany and the European Union signed this intergovernmental convention.By doing so, they undertook themselves to fulfill the measures, which are described in the AEWA Action Plan. These measurements were developed, to protect not just the migrating birds, which cross international boundaries on their way, but also the habitats they visit during their migration.So far 255 bird species, which are dependent to wetlands, are protected by the agreement. The AEWA secretary is located in Bonn, Germany.

Relation to CBD:

Migratory water bird species need protection along in their whole life cycle, including breeding areas, roosting sites and wintering areas. Any successful trans-boundary agreements under AEWA therefore help to implement the CBD work programme on protected areas.

Bern Convention

On 19th September 1979 the European secretary of the environment met in Bern and adopted the Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats.
This convention protects endangered and sensible species by limiting their use and their removal from their natural habitats. By signing the convention the Parties committed themselves to conserve also the habitats of these species. So far 50 Parties have signed the convention, including Germany, the European Union and four African countries, which shelter European migratory birds during the winter months.
About 700 plant species and 710 animal species are considered to be endangered and are listed in the appendix I and the appendix II of the convention, which means that they are strictly protected. Additionally there are about 567 animal species listed in the appendix III, which means, that they can be hunted or used only in exceptional cases.
Based on the main idea of the Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats, the protection of wild plants and animals, as well as their habitats by the cooperation of the European Countries, the FFH-Directive and Natura 2000, a network of protected areas, were developed

Relation to CBD:

As the Bern Convention protects habitas and species in Europe it serves the regional implementation of serveral thematic CBD work programmes, e.g. the programme on mountain biodiversity, the programme on biodiversity of inland waters or the one on coastal areas.