Mainstreaming biodiversity, food and nutrition into development policies

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During the 12th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 12) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) parties along with the international community including partners of the Biodiversity and Community Health (BaCH) Initiative discussed about the role of biodiversity for sustainable development. In line with this COP’s theme ‘Biodiversity for Sustainable Development’ participating Ministers of Environment along with other high-level delegates stressed COP12the mutually supportive nature of the Aichi Targets and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). This message was conveyed through the Gangwon Declaration – the main outcome of the High-Level Segment of COP 12. The Gangwon Declaration aims to send a strong message for the fundamental role of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and its Aichi Biodiversity Targets and Vision for 2050 to the post-2015 development agenda. As such one of the decisions (Decision XII/5) highlights the need to take further actions for food security and nutrition. Bioversity International, one of the BaCH Initiative’s key partners has been raising awareness for and generated evidence on the linkages between biodiversity conservation, food and nutrition to improve human nutrition and well-being at large over the last years. Amongst others, Bioversity International is anchoring the Biodiversity for Food and Nutrition Project – a multi-donor project in Brazil, Kenya, Sri Lanka and Turkey to mainstream biodiversity, food and nutrition.
Read the CBD press release “Major sustainable development outcomes of biodiversity meeting to be transmitted to 69th session of UN General Assembly for consideration in post-2015 Development Agenda” here.
Learn more on the role of biodiversity for sustainable development through the Biodiversity and Community Health (BaCH) Initiative’s engagement during COP12 here.

Taking action for conservation and livelihoods at the local level

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The Sustainable Livelihoods Foundation, a Cape Town based non-governmental organisation, jointly with herbalists and other partners launched Herbanisation – an open access, medicinal street garden project in 2012. The underlying idea is to create livelihood options for local Rasta and Khoi herbalists by upgrading degraded streets capes in economically marginalised areas marked by high unemployment and crime rates in Cape Town. At the same time the project aims to reconnect the community members with medicinal plants and the traditional knowledge around the use of these plants as well as traditional healers. Herbanisation has proven to be a successful approach for conservation, livelihood creation and connecting multiple stakeholders to take action to improve their health and well-being. Started as a pilot project with 250 medicinal plants, Herbanisation has expanded and covers currently 1.700 plants in Seawinds and will most probably reach 4,500 by mid 2015.

Find out more about the work here

How our quality of life and wellbeing are dependent on biodiversity

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Biodiversity lays the foundation for human survival and development by providing non-material and material benefits benefits. While material benefits of biodiversity such as clean air and food have been acknowledged by the international community since more than two decades at 1992 Rio Earth Summit, non-material benefits have not received enough attention yet.

The Biodiversity and Community Health (BaCH) Initiative has been advocating for the interconnections between biodiversity, quality of life and wellbeing. BaCH partners such as the United Nations University – Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability jointly with ETC-COMPAS (Network) and the Equator Initiative recently published a brilliant book on the concept of human well-being as it relates to international rural development and conservation policy and practice.

The focus of international discussions around sustainable management of biological resources has been shifting on immaterial values of biodiversity not only for rural local and indigenous communities but also for urban communities. International forums such as the 12th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 12) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in Korea or the IUCN World Parks Congress in Sidney have started to emphasise the inter-connections of biodiversity, human health and wellbeing at large.  A recent study commissioned by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH on behalf of the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) explores the connections between biodiversity, human wellbeing and quality of life assessing their role in key conventions such as the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and ongoing policy forums such as the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). The study further reflects the role of biodiversity and wellbeing in dominant narratives and advocates for a more integrated-approach in development cooperation policies and programs.

Read the study here.

Follow the last sessions of the IUCN World Parks Congress 2014 on-line

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The IUCN World Parks Congress 2014 – a key global forum on protected areas – is coming to an end. Since 12 November 2014 over 5,000 participants from governments, international organisations, civil society organisations, community based organisations, the private sector and academia have gathered to join the Congress in Sydney. In light of this year’s theme “Parks, people, planet: inspiring solutions” key stakeholders working on issues related to protected areas have been taking stock of current developments, identifying challenges and discussing innovative approaches for conservation in light of the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and a corresponding Post-2015 Development Agenda. The Biodiversity and Community Health (BaCH) Initiative partners such as UNU-IAS, the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) engaged in a number of sessions offering innovative approaches and pioneering ideas on ways to connect the both global priorities biodiversity and human health.

Join today’s world leader’s dialogue “A Balancing Act: how the global appetite for mineral resources defines the fate of protected areas” on-line here.To follow tomorrow’s closing session, follow the link here.

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Read a more detailed summary of the WPC 2014 here.

Connecting global priorities – Biodiversity and Human Health

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The State of Knowledge on the Interlinkages between Biodiversity and Human Health is an upcoming flagship publication covering all relevant issues related to the connections between biodiversity and community health. It is based on a collaborative effort of the BaCH Initiative partner the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) and the World Health Organization (WHO) and builds upon the expertise and experience of over 100 leading scientists, medical practitioners, and indigenous and local community representatives. Each chapter and its key messages have undergone separate global peer review processes open to 193 Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), as well as relevant organizations and indigenous and local community members.

The book will be launched soon at the 14th World Congress on Public Health in Kolkatta, India in February 2015. Join the event today to learn about the interlinkages between biodiversity and human health and parks. The event will inform and inspire the environment, protected areas and health sectors to synergise efforts and to jointly embark on a new global agenda for healthy ecosystems and healthy people in support of the post-2015 sustainable development agenda. Use the opportunity to engage in discussions with some of the lead authors and contributors of these publications and to be part of the final consultation of the book.

Read more about the event here: Connecting Global Priorities – Biodiversity and Human Health

This event is hosted by Parks Victoria, the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) and the World Health Organization (WHO), with support from Deakin University, US National Park Service and Harvard School of Public Health’s Centre for Health, and the Global Environment.

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Parks, People, Planet connections with Biodiversity and Community Health

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The IUCN World Parks Congress 2014 is taking currently taking place in Sidney bringing together around 4000 delegates from over 160 countries. This year’s congress is themed Parks, People, Planet: Inspiring Solutions and will showcase the essential role and diverse benefits of protected areas for people and communities. Hence, partners of the Biodiversity and Community Health (BaCH) Initiative such as the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the Equator Initiative and the United Nations University Institute for the Advanced Study for Sustainability (UNU-IAS) are actively engaged to highlight the relevance of parks for health and human well-being at large.

Here are some of the relevant events on biodiversity and community health

Connecting Global Priorities – Biodiversity and Human Health

The State of Knowledge Review on the Interlinkages between Biodiversity and Human Health is an upcoming flagship publication covering all relevant issues related to the connections between biodiversity and community health. It is based on a collaborative effort of the BaCH Initiative partner the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) and the World Health Organization (WHO) and builds upon the expertise and experience of over 100 leading scientists, medical practitioners, and indigenous and local community representatives. Each chapter and its key messages have undergone separate global peer review processes open to 193 Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), as well as relevant organizations and indigenous and local community members.

The book will be launched soon at the 14th World Congress on Public Health in Kolkatta, India in February 2015. Join the event today to learn about the interlinkages between biodiversity and human health and parks. The event will inform and inspire the environment, protected areas and health sectors to synergise efforts and to jointly embark on a new global agenda for healthy ecosystems and healthy people in support of the post-2015 sustainable development agenda. Use the opportunity to engage in discussions with some of the lead authors and contributors of these publications and to be part of the final consultation of the book.

Read more about the event here: Connecting Global Priorities – Biodiversity and Human Health

This event is hosted by Parks Victoria, the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) and the World Health Organization (WHO), with support from Deakin University, US National Park Service and Harvard School of Public Health’s Centre for Health, and the Global Environment.

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Linking Traditional Medicine, Good Healthcare Access and Conservation

This session will not only highlight the connections between human and environmental health but further showcase innovative initiatives and best practices protecting ecosystems and producing positive impact on public health. Building on a diverse set of expertise the event highlights further trends in global health and environmental policies and potential links between them. Join the interactive session and engage with key speakers from two BaCH Initiative partners the SCBD and UNU-IAS as well as other leading institutions such as Parks Victoria, the Golden Gate National Recreation Area National Parks Service, the Scottish Natural Heritage, the Natural Heritage Services Finland, the Consortium of Universities for Global Health and VicHealth.

Details: Stream 3 – Improving Health and Well-Being; Session 11, Hall 3B1 Home Room, Saturday, November 15th, 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm.

For further information see here

From Global to Local: Linking Local Conservation Objectives and Local Business Potentials Through Access and Benefit Sharing

This interactive session brings together leading stakeholders from multiple sectors including UNU-IAS to discuss the relevance of the Nagoya Protocol on ABS for Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities (IPLCs) and local conservation. Through three expert inputs the event aims to shed light into the provisions of the Nagoya Protocol which are relevant for the IPLCs, ways on how ABS can be used as a tool to create links between community based business and biodiversity conservation as well as identify avenues for the multi-beneficial implementation of ABS at the local level. Join the event and engage in a multi-disciplinary panel discussion with some of the leading stakeholders.

The event is hosted by the ABS Capacity Development Initiative and funded by:

WIN and Pacific Community Dialogue Pavilion at the IUCN World Parks Congress

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The Equator Initiative – a key partner of the Biodiversity and Community Health (BaCH) Initiative – is a partnership that works to recognize and advance local sustainable development solutions for people, nature and resilient communities. It is a multi-sector partnership – bringing together the United Nations, governments, civil society organizations, and academic institutions –committed to shining a spotlight on local sustainable development success, and to advancing environment and development strategies that are informed by the needs, capabilities and transformative potential of community-based groups.

WIN, WORLD NETWORK OF INDIGENOUS AND LOCAL COMMUNITY LAND AND SEA MANAGERS

One of the Equator Initiative’s key areas of work is WIN. WIN brings together indigenous and local community land and sea managers to share their knowledge and practices in managing ecosystems, protecting the environment and supporting sustainable livelihoods. The network responds to a growing demand from indigenous and local communities for a mechanism to facilitate peer-to-peer learning and alliance building.

WIN PRE-WORLD PARKS CONGRESS WORKSHOP

Prior to the opening of the World Parks Congress indigenous and local community land and sea managers did participate in a three day pre–conference workshop titled, Communities conserving nature and culture— A gathering among indigenous peoples and local communities from five continents to be held in the Blue Mountains. The workshop is organized by the ICCA Consortium, Equator Initiative’s WIN, UNDP GEF-Small Grants Programme, the Kimberley Land Council and other Australian and international partners. Participants will have the opportunity to share their experiences in establishing and managing protected areas in their territories and to prepare for the WPC.

THE WIN and PACIFIC COMMUNITY DIALOGUE PAVILION AT THE SIXTH IUCN WORLD PARKS CONGRESS (WPC)

The WIN and Pacific Community Dialogue Pavilion is co-hosted by the Equator Initiative’s WIN and IUCN Oceania with the support of other interested partners. Thanks to the partnership with IUCN Oceania a Pacific thematic focus will be seen throughout the week.

The community dialogue includes a mix of expert led sessions, events such as films and book launches and capacity development workshops like a three-dimensional community mapping training. The pavilion is designed to look like a community space that is “owned” by the participants. As participants will be engaging in the thematic WPC official streams it will also be a place to return to – to share their learning from the official discussions. The pavilion will run parallel to the official congress and a fruitful exchange is expected between the discussions at the pavilion and those in the congress. The pavilion is open to all thereby WPC participants/guests are welcome to join in the dialogue discussions and trainings.

Find out more about the events at the pavilion here

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