There is a major job not just to secure the right ambition in the global deal for nature, but to then turn it into tangible action. This must be a key advocacy focus for conservation NGOs over the coming months and it is why BirdLife is campaigning so hard to ensure the European Union agrees an ambitious new Nature Restoration Law. The text of a global convention is meaningless unless backed up by action.
The second half of the proposed CBD climate mitigation target is just as important: “ensure that all mitigation and adaptation efforts avoid negative impacts on biodiversity.” While the impacts of poorly located wind turbines on wildlife are well known, the perverse impacts of bioenergy are perhaps greater and set to get worse. There are already incredibly shocking examples of how natural forests (in countries as diverse as Cambodia and Chile) are being cleared for bioenergy and this mistake is being repeated in Europe.
Securing global ambition for nature’s restoration, translating this into regional and national laws and plans, ending perverse subsidies for bioenergy and radically transforming the food system are all essential to ensure we maximise the contribution that nature can make to tackling the climate crisis.
*For example, we recently estimated that the provisional European Commission target (under the proposed Nature Restoration Law) for restoring 15% of degraded habitat by 2030 would constitute just 3.6% of EU area. We think that this is a timid ambition and not only would it fall short of the new CBD target, we think we should be restoring 15% of the overall EU land, river, and sea areas by 2030.