After closing the UN Decade on Biodiversity, countries are this year negotiating a new 10 year agenda to halt the accelerating loss of biodiversity. This new and overarching global biodiversity framework, dubbed the Post 2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, is to be adopted at the fifteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD COP 15), planned later in 2021 in Kunming, China.

A Consultation Workshop of Biodiversity-Related Conventions on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework was organized by UNEP in cooperation with the CBD Secretariat  and  with participation of the governing bodies and the secretariats of the biodiversity-related conventions and other Multilateral Environmental Agreements. The World Heritage Convention was represented by 4 members of the Bureau (Bahrain, China, Spain and Uganda), as well as by the World Heritage Centre and IUCN. The purpose of the meeting was to provide concrete inputs to the ongoing process to develop the Post 2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.

As one of the biodiversity-related conventions the World Heritage Convention is ideally positioned to contribute to the Global Biodiversity Framework, as its makes a significant contribution to global biodiversity conservation, international cooperation, peace and the quality of life on earth.

Key contributions of the World Heritage Convention to the conservation of biodiversity and ecosystems at global, national and site levels (including sites with cultural values) were highlighted in the interventions, including improving management effectiveness of protected areas and enhancing connections between people, culture and nature through UNESCO’s existing mechanisms and through bilateral and joint works with other biodiversity-related and culture conventions. In order to further strengthening the on-going efforts and to make the new global biodiversity framework truly overarching and relevant to all the biodiversity-related conventions, the importance of addressing the mandates of the Conventions was also stressed. Participants to the meeting also recalled the need to ensure that National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans integrate the objectives of all the biodiversity-related conventions and to strengthen cooperation among national focal points of different conventions.

The Bureau members, the World Heritage Centre and IUCN agreed that the outcomes of the Bern II meeting should be brought to the attention of the World Heritage Committee at its extended 44th session foreseen in 2021 to ensure concrete follow-up action.