SPREP and CBD Strengthen Commitments to Biodiversity Conservation in the

Caption: (L – R) Mr David Sheppard, SPREP and Dr. Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, CBD.The MoU was signed during a Pacific Dialogue session at the World Parks Congress held at the Sydney Olympic Arena in Australia.

15 November, 2014, Sydney, Australia – The signing of an agreement over the weekend between the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) was a fitting culmination to the Pacific Islands Dialogue to prepare for Pacific input to the Promise of Sydney commitments being developed at the World Parks Congress.

The Memorandum of Understanding between the two organisations will ensure joint implementation of the Pacific region’s Framework for Nature Conservation and Protected Areas in the Pacific Island Region 2014-2020, and the CBD Strategic Plan for Biological Diversity 2011-2020 and its Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

“Effectively, this means that under-resourced Pacific island countries, which have committed to meeting the Aichi Biodiversity Targets will benefit from our joint support in developing and implementing National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans while also establishing measurable goals that align with the Aichi Targets,” said Mr David Sheppard, Director General of SPREP.

“This approach is also very much in line with what we are hearing from countries ? the need for improved coordination between regional and international partners and more streamlined approaches to our reporting and monitoring.”

“This partnership will bridge the gap between the global and local agenda as we are committed to doing more from regional perspective to help implement the global agenda,” said Dr. Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, CBD Executive Secretary. “Specific areas of collaboration include scientific and technical cooperation, increased capacity in monitoring and financing.”

Enhancing partnerships and cooperation between the European Overseas Territories and Small Island Developing States was also raised as a valuable opportunity.

Dr. Dias added that he and Mr. Sheppard “hoped to use the MOU also as a monitoring and assessment framework to help achieve the review of biodiversity strategies and action plans for all Parties, indigenous peoples and local communities, subnational governments and non-independent islands in the region, and ensure alignment of the global, regional, national and local agendas through the Aichi Biodiversity Targets”.

“The recently launched Fourth Global Biodiversity Outlook suggests that we are not doing enough,” he said. “We need to do monitoring if we are to know if our pledges are being implemented and effective.”

SPREP and the CBD have had a close working relationship for several years. The renewed Memorandum of Agreement outlines key priority areas of work commitments between the two organisations.

MEDIA RELEASE.