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Friday, 27 September 2013

EP Intergroup: Reaching the EU 2020 biodiversity targets

‘The European Union (EU) can push biodiversity mainstreaming in many ways to reach EU 2020 targets’ said Chris Vanden Bilcke, Head of UNEP’s Liaison Office to the EU, during a conference of the European Parliament (EP) Intergroup on Climate Change, Biodiversity and Sustainable Development (CCBSD), which  was held on Tuesday 24 September 2013 in Brussels. The speakers raised the importance of restoring nature through green infrastructure (GI); linking biodiversity science and policy; involving private sector in biodiversity conservation; integrating biodiversity measures into agricultural practices.
Dr. Sybille van den Hove, Director and Partner of MEDIAN, agreed on the need for better scientific evidence on biodiversity issues but she also highlighted the importance of  a strong political will from European institutions. Private businesses should come closer  to nature, adapt their business model and, play a greater role in helping to protect biodiversity, advocated  Daan Wensing , expert for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Speakers also agreed that both agriculture and biodiversity are strongly linked and that win-win approaches are available. They are convinced that enhancing biodiversity and sustainable productivity of farmers can go hand in hand.
The EU has recently adopted the Biodiversity Strategy to 2020 which calls for “halting the loss of biodiversity and the degradation of ecosystem services in the EU by 2020, and restoring them in so far as feasible, while stepping up the EU contribution to averting global biodiversity loss”. The full implementation of the Strategy requires action from a variety of stakeholders, institutions, administrators, and businesses.

Source: CCBSD