rich countries will have to pay 20 billion euros a year to developing countries

This is a historic agreement. After two weeks of tough negotiations, the 196 nations participating in COP15 on biodiversity in Montreal agreed on 23 clearly defined targets. The satisfaction for existing associations in the field was relieved because they could create a framework for thinking around biodiversity. Indeed, he isn believe it 75% of the surface of continental ecosystems and only 40% of the oceans severely degraded, and one million species are said to be threatened with extinction in the near future.

The goals of the report are grouped into three categories: reducing threats to biodiversity, sharing benefits across populations, and ways to reduce our impact on living things. Let’s go back to this agreement between good and bad surprises.

Minimum 30% target reached

Targets 2 and 3 of the agreement call for the restoration of at least 30% of degraded land by 2030 and the preservation of at least 30% of biodiversity-rich land. Today, 8% is preserved on land and 8% in seas. China accepted this principle “30-on-30” this market allows us to open this central point of the agreement, which is equal to the 1.5 degree limit of the Paris agreement.

“France strongly supported this 30% limit. “The challenge for us is to implement these measures, especially in the French Overseas Territory, where a large part of the biodiversity is concentrated.”, emphasizes Hélène Soubelet, director of the Biodiversity Research Foundation (FRB). Research Minister Sylvie Retailleau also announced a €15 million research plan for January 2023 dedicated to environmental issues in Guyana.

The Life Adapt’Island project launched this year in Guadeloupe aims to protect coastlines, marine species and promote nature-based solutions. It should be noted that the West Indies and the Caribbean region alone account for 80% of France’s biodiversity and 10% of global biodiversity.

However, the agreement that 30% will be restored and 30% preserved remains unclear. Environmental organizations would prefer a figure per hectare of land or sea surface.

COP15: a historic agreement to better protect the planet’s biodiversity

Reduce pesticide risks by 50% by 2030

Another leading measure adopted by all states: a 50% reduction in pesticide risks by 2030. “We go beyond announcing the restoration of ecosystems. These are concrete measures”, welcomes Arnaud Gilles, Advocacy Officer for WWF France. As for agriculture, the agreement calls for better management of agricultural systems such as agroecology and increased connectivity routes between the two biodiversity-rich areas. A measure that will have to go through the greening of cities.

The text also calls for a 50% reduction in the impact of invasive species by 2030, with a special focus on islands where these species are particularly harmful.

Developed countries give developing countries 20 billion per year

The essence of the agreement remained in financing. How much money should be put on the table to protect biodiversity? States decided… and added 700 billion euros annually to the 150 billion already allocated to biodiversity conservation. A measure that can only be implemented by reducing 500 billion euros of subsidies given by States and considered dangerous for biodiversity.

The measure adds at least €20 billion in aid from developed countries to developing countries annually until 2025, and at least €30 billion between 2025 and 2030. Today, this financial support is estimated at 10 billion euros.

Indigenous people, women, future generations… social justice is everywhere

This is one of the surprises of the text for associations. Several targets require social justice to limit our impact on biodiversity. First, there is a need for developed countries, especially the Nordic countries, to share their scientific and technological knowledge with developing countries, especially the poorest countries.

It is also important to ensure gender equality in biodiversity decision-making, as well as to respect the cultures and land rights of indigenous peoples. Target 23 is even uniquely linked to the importance of women in biodiversity action and legislation.

The text also mentions consumption as responsible for pressures on biodiversity and invites us to reduce our carbon footprint by significantly reducing food waste and overconsumption.

And now the execution

“It’s good to have a global agreement, but the biggest things need to be done”, Hélène Soubelet emphasizes. If the associations are happy to agree, they are well aware that these are only established grounds. Now the goal is to change the judicial process and take concrete measures.

Companies are invited to demonstrate their credentials in terms of impact on wildlife. For states, they will have to assess biodiversity loss and demonstrate their research, but this agreement is just an agreement in principle, it does not oblige them to comply with these measures and does not include any sanctions. In detail, no method of reducing consumption or using pesticides is detailed, so everyone will have to apply their own practices.

It’s time for optimism for the WWF. “We have key levers to embark on major projects to protect, restore and reduce our pressure on biodiversity. We believe that there is enough work to be done. »