Contributions from science to policy making and implementation

the Fifth Science-Policy Forum for Biodiversity

and

the Eighth International Conference on Sustainability Science

13 April - 23 April, 2021

Organisers

Acknowledgement
Financial support for the organization of the virtual sessions is provided by University of Tokyo and IUBS

Other contributors

About

Introduction

The world community is currently in the process of developing an ambitious post-2020 global biodiversity framework to be adopted at the fifteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (COP 15). The framework is intended, inter alia, to accelerate efforts to halt and reverse the global decline of biodiversity, contribute to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and facilitate the transformational changes needed to place the global community on a path towards realizing the 2050 Vision of Living in Harmony with Nature.

How to realize this vision in practical terms, including mainstreaming biodiversity and fostering transformative change, should be examined by scientists, policymakers and other relevant stakeholders at various levels.

It is also necessary to discuss these issues among other multilateral environmental agreements (including biodiversity-related conventions, UNCCD, UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement) and within the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Objectives

The joint fifth Science-Policy Forum for Biodiversity and the eighth International Conference on Sustainability Science (ICSS 8) aim to provide space for scientists, policy makers and other relevant stakeholders to discuss and make recommendations on how science, technology and innovation could contribute to the effective implementation of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework in order to bend the curve of biodiversity loss and obtain positive biodiversity outcomes and foster transformative change towards achieving the 2050 Vision.

In particular, participants will discuss options and solutions to facilitate the implementation of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework, including potential nature-based solutions for tackling both biodiversity loss and climate change challenges based on solid scientific knowledge and evidence. They will also identify key knowledge gaps and priorities for science-policy research, needs for capacity building and opportunities for increased technical and scientific cooperation.

Virtual Sessions

In light of the postponement of COP 15, and consequently of the fifth Science-Policy Forum for Biodiversity and ICSS 8, to October 2021, the co-organizers have decided to organize a virtual segment of the above events to keep the momentum and provide science-based inputs into the process for the development of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework.

The programme will include five virtual sessions to be held on 13, 15, 19, 21 and 23 April 2021. The sessions will last up to 120 minutes, starting at 6 am (Montreal Time).

Each session will have four to six panelists and a moderator and will include the possibility to interact with the participants via the chat. The panelists will be invited to respond to a limited number of questions during the live session. The exchange through the chat will remain open for three days after the end of each session to give an opportunity for the panelists to answer the questions posted and for the online discussions to continue.

Outputs

Participants will share experiences, knowledge, ideas and diverse perspectives on the various subjects. They will also showcase innovative solutions and tools that could facilitate the implementation of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework.

The conclusions and recommendations of the virtual sessions will be prepared by a dedicated task team, involving the sessions’ co-leads, and will be submitted to the twenty-fourth meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA 24), the third meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Implementation (SBI 3) and the third meeting of the Open-Ended Working Group to contribute to the preparation of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework. This would allow the fifth Science-Policy Forum for Biodiversity and ICSS-8 to contribute to the elaboration of the draft framework well in advance of COP 15.

Agenda

All times mentioned below are in Montreal, QC, Canada (GMT-4) timezone.

6:00 am - 6:30 am

Opening of the joint event

Co-chairs

Ms. Britta Garfield

Senior Advisor for Global Strategy
CSP, Smithsonian Institution

Mr. Sergio Andres Aranguren Zaldua

Junior Professional
CSP, Humboldt Institute

Welcome addresses

Ms. Elizabeth Maruma Mrema

Executive Secretary
SCBD

H.E. Runqiu Huang

Minister
Ministry of Ecology and Environment of People’s Republic of China

Mr. Hesiquio Benitez Diaz

Chair
SBSTTA

Mr. Kazuhiko Takeuchi

Professor
University of Tokyo, IGES

Mr. L.S. Shashidhara

President
IUBS

Mr. Scott E. Miller

CSP Co-chair
Chief Scientist of the Smithsonian Institution

Mr. Oscar Gualdron

CSP Co-chair
Deputy Director of the Humboldt Institute

6:30 am - 7:30 am

SESSION 1 – Part 1
A framework for transition: towards the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF)

Description

The Co-chairs on the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework will present the goals, targets and indicators in the draft framework, and key scientists will provide an overview of how science, including social sciences, could better support planning, policy making, implementation and monitoring.

Co-chairs

Ms. Britta Garfield

Senior Advisor for Global Strategy
CSP, Smithsonian Institution

Mr. Sergio Andres Aranguren Zaldua

Junior Professional
CSP, Humboldt Institute

Keynote presentations

Sir. Robert Watson

Report Lead for UNEP’s first synthesis report “Making Peace with Nature: a scientific blueprint to tackle climate, biodiversity and pollution emergencies”

Key findings of the UNEP global synthesis report on recent major assessments

Ms. Ana Maria Hernandez

Chair
IPBES

The importance of science-policy dialogues and how the IPBES work programme could contribute to the GBF

Mr. Francis Meri Sabino Ogwal

Co-Chair
Open-ended Working Group on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework (OEWG)

Overview of the proposed GBF goals, targets and indicators

Followed by Q&A

Contributors

7:45 am - 8:40 am

SESSION 1 – Part 2

BREAKOUT GROUP 1
Advancing solutions for transition

Chair

Mr. Kensuke Fukushi

Professor
University of Tokyo, IFI

Description

This session will explore the feasibility, approaches, needs, opportunities and challenges of using scenarios and models as possible practical solutions to inform policymaking and decision-making towards the achievement of the Zero net biodiversity loss. The IPBES assessment described four different types of scenarios that can support policy review. IPBES also has been leading development of a new conceptual framework for biodiversity scenarios called Nature Future Framework (NFF). This framework forms the foundation for developing scenarios of positive futures for nature and captures the multiplicity of relationships between people and nature, to help inform assessments of policy options across multiple scales. The NFF is organized around three main perspectives, abbreviated as Nature for Nature, Nature for Society, and Nature as Culture. Participants will review the relationships between indirect and direct drivers of biodiversity loss and the linkages between biodiversity, ecosystem services, climate change adaptation and human well-being. Through this session, speakers and participants will discuss how new NFF can be operationalized and localized to achieve the targets of the Global Biodiversity Framework and several of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Presenters

Mr. Osamu Saito

Institute for Global Environmental Strategies

Introduction and setting the scene

Ms. Laura M. Pereira

Stellenbosch University, Matieland, South Africa; Stockholm Resilience Centre, Stockholm University

Nature Future Framework

Mr. Chihiro Haga

Osaka University

PANCES scenarios case study in Japan

Ms. Herlin Chien

National Pingtung University of Science and Technology

Urban river restoration and future scenarios

Respondent

Mr. Kazuhiko Takeuchi

Professor
University of Tokyo, IGES

Followed by Q&A

Contributors

7:45 am - 8:40 am

BREAKOUT GROUP 2
Enabling conditions for transitioning to zero net habitat loss (zero net deforestation, land degradation and land use change)

Co-Chairs

Ms. Lily O. Rodriguez

Science Forum for Biodiversity co-organiser
IUBS

Mr. Joseph Alcamo

Professor
Environmental Systems Science
Director
Sussex Sustainability Research
University of Sussex

Description

This breakout group will reflect on findings of recent research reports, such as the IUBS Report on “Actions on sustainable food production and consumption for the post-2020 global biodiversity framework”, to facilitate a dialogue with 2 experts followed by questions and answers.

The last two decades, efforts, although insufficient, were made across the globe to stop terrestrial habitat losses. The IPBES report pointed out the main drivers for these losses and also identified some of the conditions should be made available for solutions to be implemented. Two pathways ought to be put in place to stop deforestation for human uses and to replace natural habitats to achieve ZERO NET HABITAT LOSS. In this session, we will discuss the feasibility of implementing those enabling conditions (which changes need to be made and how, when, where, political will, trade-offs on “investing” on more land-protection, challenges for developing countries; which changes in developed countries? 50% of their lands converted for restoration? Protection?) to achieve both the ambitions of the biodiversity convention and those of the SDGs .

Presenters

Mr. Barron Joseph Orr

Lead Scientist
United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD)

Land degradation neutrality

Ms. Izabela Delabre

Assistant Professor
Birkbeck, University of London

Actions on sustainable food production and consumption for the post-2020 global biodiversity framework

Ms. Martine Maron

University of Queensland

Zero net deforestation

Mr. Anthony Waldron

Conservation Research Institute

Mr. Hesiquio Benitez Diaz

Chair
SBSTTA
Director of International Cooperation
CONABIO

Mr. Joss Lyons-White

Imperial College of London

Followed by Q&A

Contributors

8:40 am - 9:00 am

CLOSING
Return of all participants to the plenary to report final conclusions

Co-chairs

Ms. Britta Garfield

Senior Advisor for Global Strategy
CSP, Smithsonian Institution

Mr. Sergio Andres Aranguren Zaldua

Junior Professional
CSP, Humboldt Institute

Reporting by

Mr. Kensuke Fukushi

Professor
University of Tokyo, IFI

BREAKOUT Group 1 report back

Ms. Lily O. Rodríguez

Science Forum for Biodiversity co-organiser
IUBS

BREAKOUT Group 2 report back

All times mentioned below are in Montreal, QC, Canada (GMT-4) timezone.

6:00 am - 7:30 am

SESSION 2
Round table on biodiversity monitoring and data

Description

This roundtable will explore measures needed to improve the mobilization and sharing of data, information and knowledge required to support the implementation of the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework. Participants will, inter alia, explore options for promoting the establishment of biodiversity monitoring systems and protocols, discuss policies and best practices to ensure that data is shared in standardized formats to enable re-use and universal access; and identify indicators and tools to ensure that data, information and knowledge are made available in formats that can support policy and decision making, planning and implementation relating to biodiversity.

Chair / Introduction to the session

Mr. Tim Hirsch

Deputy Director
Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF)

Block 1: The data challenge

Mr. Mike Gill

Director, Biodiversity Indicators Program
NatureServe

Mr. Neil Burgess

Chief Scientist
UN Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP WCMC)

Ms. Lina Sanchez

Assistant Researcher, Programme on Evaluation and Monitoring
Instituto de Investigación de Recursos Biológicos Alexander von Humboldt

Block 2: Key data needs

Mr. Andrew Gonzalez

Co-chair
Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON)

Mr. Henrique Pereira

Co-speaker
German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research(iDiv)

Ms. Alice Hughes

Leader, Landscape Ecology Group
Chinese Academy of Sciences
Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden

Block 3: The data and monitoring investment

Moderator

Mr. Andrew Gonzalez

Co-chair
Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON)

Mr. Robert Guralnick

Principal Investigator
VertNet

Ms. María Cecilia Londoño Murcia

Co-chair
Group on Earth Observations Biodiversity Observation Network (GEO BON)

Mr. Tim Hirsch

Deputy Director
Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF)

Final discussion, questions from audience

Reinforce key messages and aim for ‘call for action’ responses with a particular focus on upcoming SBSTTA and SBI meetings. To be moderated by Tim Hirsch.

Contributors

VertNet

All times mentioned below are in Montreal, QC, Canada (GMT-4) timezone.

6:00 am - 6:35 am

SESSION 3
Harnessing science, technology and innovations to support the implementation of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework

Chair

Ms. Linxiu Zhang

Director
UNEP-IEMP

Description

This session will provide an opportunity to further discuss how science, technology and innovation could be better harnessed to support the implementation of the post 2020 global biodiversity framework, especially at the regional, national and local levels. This will build on the outcomes of the UN Summit on Biodiversity (Leaders’ Dialogue 2) held in September 2020.

Keynote presentations

Ms. Yan Liu

Director of the Research Center of Biodiversity Conservation and Biosafety
Conservation and Biosafety
Nanjing Institute of Environmental Sciences (NIES), Ministry of Ecology and Environment of China

The role of scientific and technological innovation in promoting biodiversity conservation

Ms. Jamison Ervin

Manager, Nature for Development
UNDP

Strategies to promote innovative solutions in support of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework

Mr. Kevin Esvelt

Leader, Sculpting Evolution Group
Assistant Professor, MIT Media Lab
MIT

The importance of transparency and early community engagement for trust in science

Contributors

UNEP-IEMP-Logo

6:35 am - 7:40 am

BREAKOUT GROUP 1
Biodiversity, Climate and Livelihoods: Implications for the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework

Chair

Mr. Arthur Hanson

Distinguished Fellow and former President
IISD

Description

Ecosystem health is being damaged by climate change, in turn causing loss of livelihoods, food insecurity and other socio-economic effects at community and regional levels within countries. Together these impacts make it more difficult to break vicious poverty cycles and can worsen ecological degradation and biodiversity loss.

A nexus approach examines interdependencies among key components of complex socio-ecological systems. When combined with adaptive planning and management such research can lead to better outcomes such as low carbon rural development, protection of ecological services and sustainable livelihoods. This approach emphasizes livelihood improvement to break cycles of poverty while restoring ecosystems, and helping local communities to adapt to climate change.

Working with nature is necessary to create local prosperity and a better quality of life. The benefits cannot be optimized without significant policy realignments, long-term financial investment and capacity development at local levels. Green recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic is a prime case for considering a nexus approach.

The breakout discussion will consider the following questions:

  1. Successful policy requires understanding of the relationship between nature and livelihoods. What gaps in sciences still need to be filled?
  2. On management, what are the enabling conditions for better solutions to the intertwined crises of biodiversity and ecosystems, climate change and livelihoods?

Presenters

Mr. Ivar A. Baste

Senior advisor
The Norwegian Environment Agent

Ms. Lin Li

Director
Global Policy and Advocacy at WWF International

Ms. Joyeeta Gupta

Professor
Amsterdam Institute for Social Science Research
University of Amsterdam

Mr. Shenggen Fan

Chair Professor and Dean of Academy
Global Food Economics and Policy at China Agricultural University

Ms. Linxiu Zhang

Director
UNEP-IEMP

6:35 am - 7:40 am

BREAKOUT GROUP 2
The current landscape of renewable energy technologies and applications, and its impact on conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity

Chair

Mr. Osamu Saito

Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES)

Description

Breakout group 2 will consider the following questions:

  • How different renewable energy technologies can drive ecosystem change and contribute to biodiversity conservation and ecological restoration as nature-based solutions (NbS)?
  • How can we promote a sustainable energy transition without losing biodiversity and producing negative social impacts?
  • How policies and projects of renewable energy and NbS can be operationalized and implemented to achieve the targets of the Global Biodiversity Framework and the Sustainable Development Goals?

Presenters

Mr. Alexandros Gasparatos

Associate Professor
University of Tokyo, IFI

Renewable Energy and Biodiversity: Implications for achieving Post 2020 Global Biodiversity Framework

Ms. Amanda Ahl

Tokyo Institute of Technology

Digital technologies and energy transition

Mr. Siddharth Sareen

University of Bergen

Environmental governance and energy infrastructure transitions

Respondent

Mr. Kazuhiko Takeuchi

Professor
University of Tokyo, IGES

Followed by Q&A

7:40 am - 8:00 am

CLOSING
Return of all participants to the plenary to report final conclusions

Chair

Ms. Linxiu Zhang

Director
UNEP-IEMP

Reporting by

Mr. Arthur Hanson

Distinguished Fellow and former President
IISD

BREAKOUT Group 1 report back

Mr. Osamu Saito

Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES)

BREAKOUT Group 2 report back

All times mentioned below are in Montreal, QC, Canada (GMT-4) timezone.

10:00 am - 11:30 am

SESSION 4
Links between loss of biodiversity, climate change and zoonotic diseases

Description

Today, more than ever before, the links between biodiversity loss and the emergence of new zoonotic diseases such as Ebola and COVID-19 are undeniable. “The continuing loss of biodiversity on a global scale represents both direct and indirect threats to our health and wellbeing. Biodiversity loss and ecosystem change, including through land use change, habitat fragmentation and loss, and climate change, can increase the risk of disease emergence and spread among people, animals and other living species.” An IPBES Workshop Report on Biodiversity and Pandemics also noted that pandemics will emerge more often and spread more rapidly in the future, unless there is a transformative change in the global approach to dealing with the links between nature degradation and zoonotic diseases.

This session will focus on the issue of health and biodiversity. Scientists will discuss and make recommendations to guide the world community on possible ways to avoid or minimize future pandemics by restoring the balance between nature and humans.

Co-chairs

Mr. Nils Christian Stenseth

Former President, IUBS
Professor of ecology and evolution at the University of Oslo

Ms. Cristina Romanelli

WHO

Presenters

Mr. Zhibin Zhang

President
International Society of Zoological Sciences

Ms. Paula Ribeiro Prist

IAI

Ms. Doreen Robinson

UNEP

Ms. Lily O.Rodriguez

Director
CIMA

Followed by Q&A

Contributors

All times mentioned below are in Montreal, QC, Canada (GMT-4) timezone.

6:00 am - 7:30 am

SESSION 5
Young Scholars and Professionals Session: Ecological Restoration - framing challenges and opportunities

Description

The UN has declared 2021-2030 as the UN Decade of Ecological Restoration. In this session we have invited young scholars and professionals to discuss and give examples of new initiatives of ecological restoration and nature-based solutions from many different habitats in many different parts of the world. There is an urgent need to reverse the trend in land degradation resulting from e.g. harmful policies such as subsidies for intensive farming or weak tenure laws that encourage deforestation. Investments in restoration activities have the potential of restoring biodiversity and thus also ecological functions and ecosystem services, such as removing greenhouse gases from the atmosphere and storing carbon in the ground. The economic benefits of such interventions exceed many times the cost of investment in a diverse set of habitats including forests, farmlands, cities, wetlands and oceans. For these investments to be successful there is a need for a massive mobilization of natural science, social science, economics, but also practitioners and other professionals. Initiatives for nature-based solutions and ecological restoration are inherently inclusive and often involve a diverse set of stakeholders. Over time these initiatives are necessary to help us more rapidly achieve the targets of the global biodiversity framework and several of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Chair

Mr. Thomas Elmqvist

Professor
Stockholm University

Presenters

Ms. Catarina C. Jakovac

Wageningen University, NL/ International Institute for Sustainability IIS-Rio
Conservation and Sustainability Science Centre

Global Priority Areas for Ecosystem Restoration

Mr. Jean-Marc Kouman

Jean Lorougnon Guédé University

Natural restoration of a highly anthropized tropical forest in Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa

Ms. Sally Torres

Universidad Ricardo Palma

Urban planning perspective to the question of ecosystem restoration / NBS in Latin-American cities

Ms. Herlin Chien

National Pingtung University of Science and Technology

Urban water restoration in East Asia

Moderated discussion with Panel

Ms. Lily Zeng

Yale University

Socio-cultural / Indigenous dimensions on restoration

Ms. Mirna Fernandez

Global Youth Biodiversity Network

Global policy and ecological restoration

Ms. Jessica Kavonics

ICLEI Africa

Urban ecological restoration in African cities, a practitioners perspective

Contributors

7:45 am - 8:45 am

SDG Labs - Biodiversity-Solutions for Change

Description

The SDG LABS is a virtual session with 6 teams from different continents, addressing how various biodiversity-utilizing approaches can be used as a soliton for achieving sustainability. The biodiversity-based SDG Labs are groups that bring together participants from a range of research disciplines and sectors of society to develop solutions to complex problems that help to make progress towards implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Solutions that SDG Labs propose are anchored on biodiversity, evidence-based, have legitimacy within the stakeholder groups, identifying pathways to societal transformation, mapping actors, and evaluating synergies, trade-offs and risks. In this session, the biodiversity-based SDG Labs will present their mid-term or results. It will be a mid-term platform for communication between project groups, it will facilitate planning for the next step for lab activities and scaling up their actions to regional or national level. The aspiration of the SDG labs is that they plant seeds of change that can grow and spread, inspire and provide knowledge for transformation on a greater scale.

Chair 

Mr. Marcin Pawel Jarzebski

Project Assistant Professor
University of Tokyo

Presenters

Ms. Armine Abrahamyan

Armenian National Agrarian University

Biodiversity in Action: accelerating data digitization for innovative cropping system

Mr. Jason Lee

Southwest Forestry University (SWFU)

Forestry-tea Ecosystem Services and Influence on Local Livelihood: the Case of Tea Forests in Yunnan, China

Ms. Jintana Kawasaki

Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES)

Japan Promoting traditional agroforestry farming system for sustainable watershed forest management in the North-Eastern region of Thailand

Ms. Bixia Chen

University of the Ryukyus

Conserving biodiversity of homestead windbreaks and home garden for food security and rural development

Ms. R. Ntsiva N. Andriatsitohaina

Research scientist
Madagascar Forests and Communities Caretakers Association and ESSA-Forêts

Immersive ecotourism in Tampolo Protected Area towards sustainable development

Mr. Ismael Ocen

Ocean One Social Research Centre

Research to establish the role Karimojong Nomadic Indigenous Pastoralist play in the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity

Contributors

8:45 am - 9:15 am

Closing Session

Co-chairs

Mr. Erie Tamale

Senior Programme Management Officer
Head, Capacity Building and Knowledge Management
SCBD

Ms. Isimemen Osemwegie

West African Biodiversity & Ecosystem Services (WABES)

Reporting by

Ms. Lily.O.Rodriguez

IUBS

Preliminary conclusions and recommendations of the Virtual Sessions

Remarks will be made by representatives of co-organizing institutions.

Mr. Scott E. Miller

CSP Co-chair
Chief Scientist of the Smithsonian Institution

Mr. Oscar Gualdron

CSP Co-chair
Deputy Director of the Humboldt Institute

Mr. L.S. Shashidhara

President
IUBS

Mr. Chunhong Li

Vice President and
Secretary General
Chinese Society for Environmental Sciences

Mr. Kensuke Fukushi

Professor
University of Tokyo, IFI

Ms. Jyoti Mathur-Filipp

Director, Implementation Support Division
SCBD

Global coordinators

Mr. Claudio Chiarolla

Programme Management Officer
SCBD

Ms. Nathalie Fomproix

Executive Director
IUBS

Registration

Registrations are closed for the conference.