CARICOM, supported by the OECS Commission, will be hosting a preparatory training workshop in Saint Lucia on September 12-14 for delegates from its Member States, who will be attending the Convention on Biological Diversity Fifteenth Conference of the Parties (COP-15). COP-15 convenes in Montreal, Canada, and will bring governments from around the world together to agree on a new set of goals to guide global actions through 2040 to protect and restore nature.
This two-day preparatory workshop will familiarise participants with the operational aspects of the COP, including the drafting of statements and interventions from the floor during meetings. The workshop's objectives include:
- Revisiting the COP-15 agenda and enabling technical delegations to identify and analyse agenda items most relevant to national and regional interests;
- Providing refresher training in Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) negotiations; and
- Allowing exchanges of views between participants about key COP-15 issues, desired outcomes, and potential negotiating strategies, among others.
Highlighting the importance of this upcoming conference, the Secretariat of the Convention on Biodiversity noted that “despite ongoing efforts, biodiversity is deteriorating worldwide and this decline is projected to worsen with business-as-usual scenarios. The UN Biodiversity Conference will convene governments from around the world to agree to a new set of goals for nature over the next decade through the Convention on Biological Diversity Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework process. The framework sets out an ambitious plan to implement broad-based action to bring about a transformation in society’s relationship with biodiversity and to ensure that, by 2050, the shared vision of living in harmony with nature is fulfilled.”
The Caribbean region is a biodiversity hotspot, meaning that it is an area with a high proportion of plant and animal species, some of which are found nowhere else on Earth. Conservation of biodiversity is critical for several reasons, including, food security, economic development, environmental sustainability, and the enjoyment and benefit of future generations. Currently, the OECS Environmental Sustainability Division is executing two major projects that focus on the conservation of biodiversity – the Biodiversity Support Programme for ACP Small Island Developing States and Coastal Environments (BioSPACE), and the Integrated Landscape and Investments in Sustainable Land Management in the OECS Project (ILM). These initiatives are being funded by the European Union and will support the strengthening of capacity in the region to manage, protect and sustainably use the region’s biodiversity.
Participants in the two-day preparatory workshop will go on to represent the region at the convening of COP 15 in December 2022.