The Brazilian Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (BPBES) and the InterAmerican Institute for Global Change Research (IAI) is organizing a course on Scenarios and Modelling on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services for human well-being from 01 to 14 July 2019 at the Hotel Fonte Colina Verde in São Pedro/SP, Brazil. Sponsored by the São Paulo State Research Foundation (FAPESP), this course will gather a critical mass of young scientists to discuss scientific knowledge of relevance to society. The objective of the SPSAS Scenarios is to provide graduate students with advanced knowledge and practice in the area of scenarios and modelling in biodiversity and ecosystem services, and its relation to human wellbeing, including issues related to public policy. At the same time, it will be a contribution to building professional capacity to use the results of IPBES policy support tools and methodologies for scenario analysis and modelling of biodiversity and ecosystem services assessment. The application deadline is February 20th and there are 50 places for foreign students. For more information click here>
Date: 29 January 2019
The Equator Initiative is inviting nominations for the Equator Prize 2019. The winners will join a prestigious network of 223 leading community-based organizations from 78 countries. This year’s prize will be awarded to outstanding community and indigenous peoples’ initiatives that advance nature-based solutions to climate change.
To access the online nomination system, please visit prize.equatorinitiative.org. Nominations may be submitted in Arabic, Chinese, english, French, Indonesian, Portuguese, Russian or Spanish.
Deadline for nomination is 26 Feb 2019.
Date: 25 January 2019
Equator Initiative, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
Representatives from national governments, regional and international organizations and other key stakeholders from around the world have come together to attend the 14th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 14) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) from 17-29 November, in Sham El Sheikh, Egypt. Participants are expected to renew the ambition to achieve global biodiversity targets by 2020 and begin roadmap for negotiations of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework.
At the backdrop of this important event, the Coalition of the Willing on Pollinators: ‘Promote Pollinators’ organized a Sign-up Event on the 14th of November for new member countries to join and expand the dedicated efforts among the committed members to protect pollinating species threatened with extinction. On the 18th of November, another workshop on the use of data to protect pollinators hosted by prof Koos Biesmeijer was held and older members shared the developments on data for pollinators in their countries.
The Dominican Republic is one of the Promote Pollinators members and was the host of the BES-Net’s recent Caribbean Regional Trialogue on Pollinators, Food Security and Climate Resilience held in September in Santo Domingo. Prof. Jose Rafael Almonte Perdomo, IPBES National Focal Point in the Dominican Republic, attended the sessions and presented how the Trialogue event helped enhance mutual understandings of pollinators’ roles among the communities of science, policy and practice, and strengthened their joint commitments towards the sustainable management and use of local pollinator species. The achievement by the seven participating countries at the Trialogue, who are also IPBES member states in the region, namely Antigua and Barbuda, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and Trinidad and Tobago, was highly acknowledged and welcomed as the establishment of the ‘Caribbean Coalition of the Willing’.
Date: 19 November 2018
The URBES project wins the 1st BiodivERsA Prize for Excellence and Impact
The URBES project (BiodivERsA 2010-2011 call) has been awarded the opportunity to present their work in the animated video part of the first BiodivERsA Prize for Excellence and Impact. This prize acknowledges the excellent, pioneering research performed in URBES. The project demonstrated, for the first time at this scale, the importance and value of ecosystem services and nature-based solutions provided by urban biodiversity in European cities, enabling authorities to work with these concepts part of their urban planning strategies.
Check it out here: “What’s the role of nature? Scientists involved in the URBES project inspire sustainable urban planning for people and nature.”.
Date: 12 October 2018
BES-Net’s second regional Trialogue was successfully organized on 4-6 September 2018 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Building on the experiences and lessons learnt from the Eastern European Regional Trialogue in October 2017, the event was held with the aim to raise awareness of the findings of the Intergovernmental Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services‘ (IPBES) Thematic Assessment Report on Pollinators, Pollination and Food Production and promote policy uptake of the report’s recommendations in the Caribbean region.
The Trialogue brought together BES-Net’s three target communities of science, policy and practice for face-to-face dialogue around the theme of Pollinators, Food Security and Climate Resilience from seven IPBES Member States in the Caribbean region: Antigua and Barbuda, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and Trinidad and Tobago.
“Terms like pollinators and pollination may still be uncommon in many parts of the Caribbean, yet the Caribbean island countries are in a challenging ecological position. They are blessed with the benefits of rich and unique insular biodiversity, but these benefits have been increasingly threatened as a result of land use change, recurrent extreme climate events, and invasive alien species, etc.” said UNDP’s Director for Global Policy Centre on Resilient Ecosystems and Desertification and BES-Net Project Manager, Anne Juepner. “The Trialogue applies various innovative tools and approaches so that participants are encouraged to use all five senses fully and see, hear, taste, smell and touch the theme of pollinators and pollination, which in turn will enable them to frame it not as a pure environmental but as broader economic, social and cultural issue.”
Field visit and tasting of pollinator-dependent food
During the three-day journey, the Trialogue participants jointly reviewed the status of pollinators in the region; analyzed their importance to sustainable local food production and climate resilience; assessed ways to address the challenges of invasive pests and pathogens, land-use change and pesticide use; and identified response options on how to face these obstacles and maximize important co-benefits of sustainable management and protection of pollinators and their habitats.
The Dominican Republic Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, as a new member of the Coalition of the Willing on Pollinators, hosted the event and expressed their commitment to lead and facilitate the national/regional efforts to promote pollinators in the Caribbean.
Lic. Daneris Santana, Vice-Minister of Protected Areas and Biodiversity from the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources of the Dominican Republic
Lic. Daneris Santana, Vice-Minister of Protected Areas and Biodiversity from the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources of the Dominican Republic, highlighted that the Trialogue provided the country with an important opportunity to deepen the knowledge on relevant role of pollinators in staple food production and other exportable goods that contribute to foreign trade in our country. He added that uniting policymakers, scientists and representatives from the local communities to deliberate and reflect on the contributions of wild pollinators to biodiversity, food security and human well-being is an innovative experience, which will lead to positive policy actions, ensuring that ecosystems and various pollinators species within the Caribbean receive suitable protection.
Date: 18 September 2018
26 July 2018,
“The Arab region is full of potential. Over the past decades, the region has seen significant economic and social progress. Climate risks threaten to derail these development gains. This could disrupt efforts to build peace, cause a spike in ‘eco-migrants,’ and undermine efforts to end hunger, poverty and inequality by 2030,” said Adriana Dinu, Director, Global Environmental Finance, UNDP.
The region is home to rising levels of conflict and the world’s largest population of refugees and displaced people, according to the report. Simultaneously, it is now the planet’s most water-scarce and food-import-dependent region, and the only region where malnutrition rates have been rising. “The Arab region was the birthplace of agricultural civilization and for thousands of years has been able to cope with risks from climatic hazards. But climate change is now happening at a pace unlike anything before, stretching the ability of societies to cope,” said Mourad Wahba, Assistant Administrator and Director of the UNDP Regional Bureau for the Arab States. “Over the past decade, the region has witnessed cycles of drought, the frequency and severity of which are beyond anything seen for hundreds of years in the region. This has contributed to situations of famine and food insecurity, loss of livelihoods and life, and the displacement of millions.” The impacts of climate change are exacerbating the existing challenges of sustainably managing limited natural resources across the Arab Region. Climate change-related desertification has expanded, greatly increasing the vulnerability of the local population. The region’s environment is highly vulnerable to rising temperatures, sea-level rise, and increased risks of floods and droughts, according to the report. Current climate change projections show that by the year 2025, the water supply in the Arab region will be only 15percent of levels in 1960. With population growth around 3 per cent annually and deforestation spiking to 4 per cent annually to produce charcoal and fuel the Gum Arabic trade, the region now includes 14 of the world’s 20 most water-stressed countries. In fragile countries such as Somalia, illegal armed groups such as Al-Shabaab have increasingly attracted young people who are affected by drought-induced food insecurity and who have limited job prospects, according to the report findings. UNDP supports countries in the four sub-regions of the Arab region (Mashreq, Maghreb, Arab Gulf and the Horn of Africa) to adapt to climate change impacts and to prepare for disaster risks. Climate change adaptation projects in the region support improved natural resource management practices, diversified incomes, policy support, and ecosystem-based adaptation approaches designed to improve productivity for farmers and pastoralists. “UNDP works closely with our national partners to build the resilience of institutions and communities to anticipate, absorb and adapt to increasingly complex risks from climate change. UNDP has rapidly expanded its support in recent years in this regard, through a strong partnership with the Global Environment Facility (GEF), the Green Climate Fund (GCF), the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF), the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) and key bilateral donors. As we empower countries and communities, UNDP promotes integrated solutions to achieve SDG 13 on climate action and the Paris Agreement, while bringing co-benefits for SDGs on food and water security, health, gender equality, combating land degradation and reducing the loss of biodiversity,” said Mahba. “To address the myriad challenges that climate change is bringing to the Arab States, we need to be innovative, we need to be bold, and we need to support the people in building the enabling environments they need to thrive in our fast-changing world,” Dinu said.
Report: Climate Change Adaptation in the Arab States
UNDP in the Arab States
UNDP Climate Change Adaptation
UNDP partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in more than 170 countries and territories, we offer a global perspective and local insight to help empower lives and build resilient nations
Date: 27 July 2018