‘Climate change threat to biodiversity conservation’ President Mnangagwa

Herald Reporter

Climate change and the Covid-19 pandemic are a threat to the gains made in biodiversity conservation, President Mnangagwa said yesterday in his virtual address to world leaders that attended the Biodiversity Summit at the ongoing UN General Assembly.

The summit had been convened at an opportune time when the world was grappling with emergencies.

“Zimbabwe, like the rest of the world, faces unprecedented emergencies caused by challenges of climate change, biodiversity loss and the threat of Covid-19, on the gains made with regards to biodiversity conservation and the ability to meet the sustainable development goals,” he said.

“These negative trends must be halted and reversed to avoid a global environment tragedy. The outbreak of the Covid-19 whose origin is linked to mother nature, has reminded us that humanity and the environment are inseparable. Instructively, sustainable global partnerships to nurture relationships between humanity and the environment have therefore become more urgent.

“The forthcoming 15th meeting of the Conference of Parties to the Convention on Bio-diversity (COPE 15) presents an opportunity to realise a nature positive and carbon neutral world by 2030. This is a necessary step towards the vision of living in harmony with nature by 2050.”

He said Zimbabwe would match this ambition by implementing and reviewing its national bio-diversity strategy and action plan using a multi-sectoral approach.

Zimbabwe is party to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity and all member states adopted the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity running from 2011 to this year, profiling 20 Aichi Biodiversity Targets to be achieved by 2020 at a global level. The Aichi targets were set in October 2010 at a conference in Aichi, Japan.

“The Aichi targets set out in the biodiversity strategic plan 2011 to 2020 are not on track. We must seek to redouble our efforts towards accomplishing the agreed targets and goals guided by science. In addition, a funding mechanism to support capacity building and technology transfer to developing countries is of uttermost importance without these interventions, the failure of Aichi biodiversity targets will continue to haunt us.

“The principle of common but differential responsibilities in relation to resource mobilisation and financial support remains crucial for the successful implementation of the plan,” said President Mnangagwa.

He said Zimbabwe remains committed to the three core objectives of the biodiversity convention which are conservation, benefit sharing and sustainable use.

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