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RELEASE: ICLEI and the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) to lead international consultation on Urban Ecosystems and Nature-Based Solutions

Bringing urban nature to the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity consultation process

Bonn, Germany (28 October 2019) - ICLEI and the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) will host an international consultation to address the critical role of subnational governments, urban ecosystems and nature-based solutions in the global fight to conserve, restore and enhance biodiversity on 28-29 October, 2019 in Beijing, China. 

The conference will bring together representatives of local and national governments, academia, international organizations and other key stakeholders to discuss how integrated action at the local level is imperative in order to halt biodiversity loss.

“Communities the world over depend on the health of urban ecosystems,” said Gino Van Begin, Secretary General of ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability. “Local and regional governments are key players in securing coherent nature-based urban development policies and practices. Now is the time to co-create, explore integrated solutions, and bring that work to the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.”

“The consultation and active involvement of subnational governments in the run-up to CBD COP15 in Kunming, China in 2020 is crucial, since cities and regions are key for implementing the international agreement on local levels after 2020” , said Lennart Kuemper-Schlake, German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation. “There is a growing interest among local decision-makers to support nature-based solutions in order to address different challenges cities and regions are confronted with, e.g. in climate change mitigation and adaptation.” 

The outcomes of the consultation will feed into the science and policy discussions towards the preparations for COP15 in Kunming, China, as well as the formulation and implementation of the CBD Post 2020 global framework. 

The 2011-2020 Strategic Plan for Biodiversity, also known as the Aichi-Targets, was adopted by the parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) at the tenth Conference of the Parties (COP10) in October, 2010. With the timeframe of that plan drawing to a close, the work of local and subnational governments will be instrumental in preparation and implementation of the Post-2020 global biodiversity framework. 

With strong representation of Chinese and European cities, the consultation will focus on the important roles played by local governments in integrating biodiversity concepts and nature-based solutions into urban planning and development. 

On 28 October, participants will visit Peking University Campus and Yuanmingyuan Imperial Garden, two examples of thriving urban biodiversity. Led by Professor Lu Zhi of Peking University, these visits will show participants how it is possible for areas with high levels of human activity to maintain good environmental quality and biodiversity.

The consultation will focus on four key topics: 
  • Good practices on mainstreaming biodiversity and ecosystems in urban spatial planning
  • Voluntary political commitments and financial incentives for integrating biodiversity in urban development
  • Fostering multilevel governance to enhance urban biodiversity
  • Promoting urban biodiversity through science based policy making

Aiming to strengthen biodiversity oriented policy in cities while developing robust inputs to the post-2020 consultation process, participants will share good practices and explore innovative solutions to conserve, restore and enhance urban ecosystems.

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About ICLEI - Local Governments for Sustainability

ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability is a global network of more than 1,750 local and regional governments committed to sustainable urban development. Active in 100+ countries, ICLEI influences sustainability policy and drives local action for low emission, nature-based, equitable, resilient and circular development. ICLEI's Members and team of experts work together through peer exchange, partnerships and capacity building to create systemic change for urban sustainability. For more information, visit: iclei.org

About the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN)

The German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (Bundesamt für Naturschutz – BfN) is the German government’s scientific authority with responsibility for national and international nature conservation. BfN is one of the government’s departmental research agencies and reports to the German Environment Ministry (BMUB).
The Agency provides the German Environment Ministry with professional and scientific assistance in all nature conservation and landscape management issues and in international cooperation activities. BfN furthers its objectives by carrying out related scientific research and is also in charge of a number of funding programmes.
BfN additionally performs important enforcement work under international agreements on species conservation and nature conservation, the Antarctic Treaty and the German Genetic Engineering Act.

Media inquiries:

ICLEI World Secretariat: 
Ariel Dekovic
Head of Global Communications 
Tel: +49-(0)228 / 976 299-16 ● Mobile: +49-(0)151 / 232 021-73
Email: ariel.dekovic@iclei.org ● Skype: ariel.dekovic.iclei 

German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN):
Tel:+49 228-8491-4444
E-Mail: presse@bfn.de
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