The World Conservation Congress ends with mixed results

The IUCN Congress ended after an intensive week of meetings on biodiversity. What comes out of it? A satisfaction from the organizer and the French government. A joint assessment according to environmental associations.

The expectations of the participants in the World Conservation Congress were up to the urgency of acting in the light of the collapse of biodiversity. Were these met at the end of an intensive week of negotiations, conferences and summits of all kinds held in Marseille?

The response is positive, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), organizer of the congress, and the French government, which hosted it. The NGO welcomes itself in the Marseille Manifesto, a document summarizing the event significant and significant contributions to post-pandemic recovery and the biodiversity climate crisis as IUCN members and partners are required to.

Brangre Abba, State Secretary for Biodiversity, in turn paid tribute to a very satisfactory assessment by Radio France International’s microphone. France’s action is welcomed at national level, it is recognized at international level , the government representative welcomed. On the other hand, the results are mixed according to the major environmental NGOs.

Positive progress

Sometimes rejected, this Congress allowed positive progress , judge France Natural Environment (FNE). And to name the elements that weigh the balance on the right side: the proposals adopted, the level of exchange between experts, public and NGO participation, mobilization of public institutions, involvement of new actors such as central banks, or understanding the relationship between climate and biodiversity.

In fact, many proposals were adopted by the Assembly of IUCN Members. Proposals which, if they do not have a binding character for the states, should then be taken up in public policy. Thus, the goal of increasing the percentage of protected sea areas to 30% by 2030 was born during the Hawaii Congress in 2016, Pierre Cannet recalls. He’s in the hard now welcomes the Advocacy Director of WWF France.

About twenty proposals were voted on during the congress, joining the 109 adopted by electronic vote in October 2020. They concern the Global Framework for Biodiversity after 2020, the recognition of indigenous peoples’ rights, although the role of the IUCN is disputed some on the subject, the reduction of the impacts of the mining industry, the restoration of primary forests, the protection of the Amazon or even the protection of human, animal and environmental health. It is now up to governments to take ownership of this roadmap before COP15 urges Pierre Cannet.

Cruel disillusionment over the political response

But the level of political reaction to the extremely urgent nature of the situation is once again far from meeting the challenges. What constitutes the most cruel and effective of disillusions sorry FNE.

France continues to give lessons on biodiversity and climate, but remains largely in the spotlight

France Natural environment

If Pierre Cannet pays homage to the role of France very active in discussing emotions , on the other hand, he calls for the concrete translation of the Republic President’s announcements in the next Finance Act and the 2030 plan that is being prepared. France’s failure to vote in favor of the proposal in favor of a deep – sea mining moratorium was a stain. A France the back of historycriticizes Greenpeace.

On the fraud side, FNE also points to announcements that are not neither the height of the stakes nor matched by funds . France continues to give lessons on biodiversity and climate, but remains largely in the spotlight , deplores the association of associations for the protection of nature. Emmanuel Macron’s statements, at the opening of the show, about an initiative on pesticides within the framework of the French EU Presidency and on the protection of the seas, really leave the NGOs in doubt. The French Presidency risks being severely weakened by the simultaneity of the French presidential campaign and the negotiations on the new CAP fears FNE.

As regards the strong protection of 5% of the Mediterranean by 2027, this is a promise already given in 2019 and which is waiting to be implemented pinger the association of associations. Behind this Communication, it should be understood that it is not planned to reach 10% of highly protected areas for each of the maritime facades in France, including the Mediterranean analyzes Greenpeace, which sees it as a regression in relation to the objective confirmed by the President in January 2021. As for the announcement of a summit dedicated to the seas, this is should not just be another facade summit, like the “One Planet Summits” or the “Global Forests Summit”, which only allowed companies to promote simplified or dangerous solutions such as carbon offsets and tree planting. thunders Greenpeace.

Mobilize all actors

Large companies were no strangers to the Marseille Congress either, with the remarkable presence of Nutella among the sponsors. Five multinational companies – Kering, Holcim, L’Occitane, LVMH, Pernod Ricard – with total annual sales of $ 92 billion and nearly 300,000 employees are committed to restoring and improving biodiversity through corporate strategies and initiatives that are beneficial to nature welcomes the IUCN, which seeks to mobilize all actors.

Economic “success” can no longer be achieved at the expense of nature. We have an urgent need for a systemic reformadds the NGO. Still, there is reason to be optimistic. We are perfectly capable of making transformative changes and doing so quickly. The proof? During the global pandemic, we changed our behavior to protect our health and those around us.

Article published September 10, 2021

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