Whilst the Earth’s diversity of species and habitats must be preserved first and foremost for their intrinsic value, the solution (from a socio-economic perspective) lies in recognizing and valuing nature for the ecological services it provides – upon which societies and economies are built. Nature, or “Natural Capital” – biodiversity, ecosystems and ecosystem services – must be preserved and restored as the foundation of human societies and economies.
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Protected areas sometimes struggle with effective management plans, and tensions may arise between various stakeholders.
The Altai Mountains, which straddle China, Kazakhstan, Mongolia and Russia, are a critical area for global conservation. They are a key habitat for endangered species, such as the snow leopard and Argali sheep.
The UNDP supported GEF financed project “Strengthening the Protected Area Network” (SPAN; from 2005-2012) used a number of strategies to secure sustainable financing for Namibia’s protected areas (PAs). The project undertook and successfully used a comprehensive economic analysis of the PA system to make the business case for increased investment in PAs. In addition it developed a concession management system compatible with the Government of the Republic of Namibia’s conservation and development objectives, significantly increasing the budget available for park management.
This best practice showcases how Cameroon’s efforts to harmonize biodiversity-related Multilateral Environmental Agreement’s (MEAs) led to the creation of targets in the country’s revised National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plan (NBSAP) that recognize illegal commercial trade of wildlife and plant species as a pressure on biodiversity. The Cameroon NBSAP 2014-2020 calls for several actions that promote synergy and collaboration.
China’s NBSAP and other national and regional programs and policies include action plans, implementation plans, targets, guidelines and decisions related to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. Numerous Chinese ministries and local governments have adopted and implemented a broad range of powerful policy instruments for biodiversity conservation and sustainable use. As a result, there is strengthened cooperation and increased biodiversity conservation and sustainable use among government agencies, universities and research institutes.
The Nagoya Protocol contributes to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity by providing a platform for greater legal certainty and transparency for the providers and users of genetic resources. The Protocol supports the effective implementation of one of the Convention on Biological Diversity’s (CBD) three objectives, the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources (ABS).
This case study highlights Nepal’s effort to identify synergies among various biodiversity-related Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs), Nepal’s Biodiversity and Strategic Action Plan (NBSAP), and national sustainable development indicators. It also highlights the role of Nepal’s National Biodiversity Coordination Committee (NBCC) in mainstreaming all biodiversity related conventions and biodiversity programmes within the national development agenda.
In Bhutan, synergy and coherence among existing biodiversity policies and acts was identified as a serious gap in the implementation of previous NBSAPs. Therefore, the National Task Force was established to develop the new NBSAP, to oversee liaison with National Focal Points of the other Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs), including the biodiversity-related conventions. In particular, a mapping exercise was undertaken to show the relevance of national targets across the MEAs.
Manas National Park and UNESCO World Heritage Site is located in Assam province of Northeast India and is world renowned for its outstanding natural beauty and presence of a rich biodiversity that includes several endemic, rare and threatened wild animal species that are found nowhere else in the world. The park also witnessed more than 15 years of armed conflict that led to massive destruction of the Park infrastructure and decimation of wildlife population in recent history.