Hyderabad: The UN conference on biological diversity concluded here Saturday with the developed countries agreeing to double funding by 2015 to protect planet’s animals and plant species.
After marathon discussions, which continued well past midnight, the 11th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP11) to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) reached an agreement to increase funding in support of actions to halt the rate of loss of biodiversity.
“Developed countries agreed to double funding to support efforts in developing states towards meeting the internationally-agreed Biodiversity Targets, and the main goals of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-20,” said a release issued from the CBD secretariat.
Using a baseline figure of the average annual national spending on biodiversity between 2006 and 2010, developed countries said they would double biodiversity-related international financial flows by 2015.
According to sources, this means $12 billion would be available for biodiversity conservation as against $6 billion earmarked between 2006 and 2010.
The working group on resource mobilization met several times to iron out differences between the developing and developed countries.
The COP also set targets to increase the number of countries that have included biodiversity in their national development plans, and prepared national financial plans for biodiversity, by 2015.
All parties agreed to substantially increase domestic expenditures for biodiversity protection over the same period, said the statement.
For the first time, developing countries at COP 11, including India and several African states, pledged additional funds above and beyond their core funding towards the work of the CBD.
Resource mobilization to achieve the biodiversity targets by 2020 and implement the strategic plan, agreed upon at COP10 at Nagoya, Japan in 2010, was the most contentious issue at the two-week conference, attended by over 14,000 delegates from 193 countries.
The meet also decided to pay special attention to biodiversity rich marine areas.
The Saragasso Sea, the Tonga archipelago and key corals sites off the coast of Brazil are among a range of marine areas to receive special attention by governments.
Other key decisions include new measures to factor biodiversity into environmental impact assessments linked to infrastructure and other development projects in marine and coastal areas.
Earlier, the plenary chaired by India’s Environment and Forest Minister Jayanthi Natarajan unanimously adopted the document on financial mechanism.
The delegates also adopted documents on status of the Nagoya Protocol on access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from their utilisation and related developments.
The other documents adopted includes review of progress in implementation of national biodiversity strategies and action plans and related capacity building support to parties, business and biodiversity, climate related geo-engineering, ecosystem restoration, biodiversity for poverty eradication and development, sustainable use of biodiversity, global strategy for plant conservation and invasive alien species.