The first meeting of the Open-ended Working Group on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, held in Nairobi, Kenya (27 to 30 August 2019) was an important milestone in the preparation of the structure of the framework to be adopted and its future work program. Regional leaders were represented by the Co-coordinator of the Advisory Committee on Subnational Governments (AC SNG), the Government of Québec, who sent a strong message on behalf of all its members.

Throughout the consultation process, that preceded the OEWG meeting, there has been general support for having the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF) developed and implemented in a participative and inclusive manner. In response to that openness, the AC SNG has remarked the critical need of having subnational leaders involved in the process, if the new framework is to be successful. Furthermore, the AC SNG has shared their on-the-ground experience which, if better recognized, encouraged and supported, could greatly enhance implementation.

Québec, as a leader of the AC SNG, shared a strong and important message to the delegates and experts gathered at the meeting, and recommended:

“(…) that the structure of the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework should include the role and contribution of subnational governments since they have the prevailing authority and responsibility regarding biodiversity conservation. (…) Given their authority with respect to land use planning, subnational governments can also be responsible for the integration of conservation measures at the city and local levels.”

The members of the AC SNG submitted a proposal on the structure of the GBF and are preparing to review the zero draft of the framework to be provided before the second meeting of the working group, which will take place in China on February 2020.

As negotiations progress and the structure of the new GBF starts to take shape, subnational leaders can expect to be better included, not only because it is evident that the world leaders recognize the key role subnational leaders play, but also because the AC SNG will continue to be actively engaged in the discussions. The 23rd meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA23) taking place next 25-29 November, will see the launch of the Advisory Committee’s report on mainstreaming biodiversity that intends to shine a light on its pertaining aspects such as: capacity building, monitoring and evaluation, partnerships, and possible solutions to overcome obstacles to successfully integrate biodiversity into other sectors.

Find out more on the outcomes of the OEWG meeting visiting: