In 2020 nature has sent an urgent call to action to the world following the COVID-19 pandemic. Governments at all levels have witnessed the important relationship between people and nature, and we are more than ever reminded that biodiversity loss increases the risk of the spread of zoonotic diseases with devastating consequences to the livelihoods of everyone around the world.

In this context, the first United Nations Summit on Biodiversity took place on 30 September 2020 alongside the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly. The Heads of State and Government and global leaders representing 150 countries gathered around the theme of Urgent action on biodiversity for sustainable development to provide political direction and create momentum for the upcoming 15th meeting of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Regional leaders represented by Regions4 members took the floor at the UN Summit in a segment called Voices for Nature to send video-messages to the Heads of State gathered to reinforce the urgency of creating stronger links with the subnational governments.

Mr. Iñigo Urkullu, President of the Basque Country, on behalf of the Regions4 Presidency, said that “Our conviction is firm. We assume responsibility for preserving the legacy we want for future generations. We are aware that the way to improve our legacy involves local action with our vision set on the global agenda.”

In representation of the Advisory Committee on Subnational Governments and Biodiversity to the CBD (AC SNG), Mr. Benoit Charette, Minister of the Environment and the Fight Against Climate Change of Quebec, declared that: “We [at the AC SNG] are actively committed to the adoption of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework (…) which must be inclusive and participatory, and actively engage all stakeholders at all levels of government”.

Likewise, Mr. Yaku Pérez, Prefect of Azuay highlighted that: “It is imperative to rethink our relationship with mother nature to truly make transformative change. We think that the earth is ours, when really it is the other way around, we belong and are part of the earth and nature”.

Regions4 encourages all subnational governments to continue to share their messages and join our constituency’s advocacy work to ensure our level of government has a seat at the decision-making table at the UN in regards with the global biodiversity agenda.

Regions4 Biodiversity

We invite you to endorse the Edinburgh Declaration and call on the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and its Parties to take strong and bold action to effectively halt biodiversity loss.

We also invite you to learn more about subnational actions and the work of the Advisory Committee on Subnational Governments and Biodiversity (AC SNG) reading the report Mainstreaming biodiversity: the subnational government experience

Regional governments wishing to learn more about Regions4 and the AC SNG, please contact Biodiversity Programme Manager, Renata Gómez at 

Leaders’ Pledge for Nature

In an effort to unite their voices, political leaders launched the Leaders’ Pledge for Nature, supported and endorsed by Regions4 and other 76 countries (and counting) committed to reversing biodiversity loss through 10 urgent actions to put nature and biodiversity on a path to recovery by 2030. The signatories commit to articulating clear political will through a new global biodiversity framework, putting nature at the heart of COVID recovery and urgently addressing climate change, among others.

By joining the pledge we at Regions4 commit to continue to implement ambitious actions in support of reversing biodiversity loss by 2030 and supporting ambitious governmental actions as outlined in the pledge.  

The full text of the Leaders’ Pledge can be found here.

Non-state stakeholders interested in supporting this government pledge can do so by emailing:

Further information

To learn about the results of the UN Biodiversity Summit, please click here:

To listen to all the Voices for Nature please click here: