Excellencies, honourable delegates, ladies and gentlemen

It’s time to treat the biodiversity crisis with the same urgency that we apply to the climate crisis.

Both threaten our very survival, and we cannot solve one of these crises unless we also solve the other. 

It will not be enough to halt the loss.

We must immediately put nature on a path to recovery, and ensure a net gain by 2030.

Looking back, we failed to implement the targets agreed in 2010. We cannot afford to fail again.

Europe has an integrated strategy to help it change course – the European Green Deal.

Under the Green Deal, we committed to a 55% reduction of greenhouse gases by 2030, and this summer we proposed concrete measures that will implement those reductions.

The Green Deal also includes the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030, with a broad range of measurable targets, including the protection of at least 30% of EU’s land and seas, a 50% reduction of use and risk of pesticides, promoting agro-ecology by having at least 25% of our agricultural land under organic farming management, and planting three billion trees.

To track our progress, we are putting in place a comprehensive indicator-based monitoring system.

Our sustainable financing initiative will direct finance to where it is needed.

The Green Deal also includes a Zero-Pollution Action Plan and a Zero-Waste Strategy, and the continued fostering of the circular economy.

The new EU budget provides for 10% to be used for biodiversity-relevant activities as of 2026.

And we have adopted a Strategy to improve the health of EU forests.

So as you can see, we have now quite an impressive list of policies, and they give  you have an idea of our priorities for the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework to be agreed at CBD COP15.

We need and we will defend ambitious goals, milestones, and targets which are measurable and time-bound where feasible.

A target to protect at least 30% of world’s land and oceans by 2030 should be complemented by targets that address the direct and indirect drivers of biodiversity loss and ensure sustainable use of natural resources.

We need operational provisions to mobilise finance and other means of implementation. In this context, in September, the President of the European Commission  announced that the EU will double its international biodiversity financing, in particular for the most vulnerable countries.

We need much stronger implementation, monitoring and review processes, including transparency on intended implementation, reporting, a global gap analysis and stocktake with ratcheting up of efforts if needed.

We need effective implementation of the 3rd CBD objective regarding access to and fair and equitable sharing of the benefits from the use of genetic resources linked to biodiversity, which at the same time guarantees that science, research and innovation can continue to bring full benefits that also support the implementation of the other objectives.

And lastly, we need to ensure respect of the rights of indigenous peoples, and full and effective participation by indigenous peoples and stakeholders.

Let me be clear: an approach that focuses on the lowest common denominator will not suffice. We need to create the conditions to move forward.

I count on China and all of you to bring this process to an ambitious result.  

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