The Rio Conventions Pavilion at the 15th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 15) to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), convened a series of events, which aimed to increase ambition to meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement on climate change, restore and maintain healthy landscapes, and establish a post-2020 global biodiversity framework to halt biodiversity loss.
The Rio Conventions Pavilion is a collaborative platform, supported by the Global Environment Facility (GEF), that promotes synergies among the Rio Conventions – the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the UNCCD, and UNFCCC – at the implementation level, and showcases activities that link biodiversity conservation and sustainable use, sustainable land management and efforts to combat desertification, and climate change mitigation and adaptation.
This edition of the Rio Conventions Pavilion, which took place from 10-18 May 2022, featured thematic days, with a range of events, panel discussions, and speakers focused on the theme of the day.
The High-level Opening of the Pavilion on 10 May brought together the Presidencies and Executive Secretaries of the three Rio Conventions to explore synergies in efforts to combat land degradation, climate change, and biodiversity loss. Key messages include:
- The Rio Conventions address three facets of a single global sustainability challenge;
- The GEF’s catalytic investments will be essential to achieving the objectives of the Paris Agreement, the post-2020 global biodiversity framework, land degradation neutrality (LDN), and the SDGs;
- The Rio Conventions serve as multilateral instruments to help countries develop national plans for achieving their development priorities for current and future generations; and
- During the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021-2030, key action areas focused on land restoration must be advanced under each Convention’s process in a coordinated manner.
On 11 May, Drought Day addressed ways to transform political commitments to action on drought resilience. The Day included thematic sessions that, among others: showcased examples of effective national and regional policies and projects that improve drought resilience; focused on early warning and action systems; and addressed sustainable finance and ways to channel it into nature-positive bankable projects that contribute to drought resilience.
Food Day on 12 May discussed current global challenges and how they relate to the food system. Among other topics, the Day’s sessions discussed: building momentum for transforming food systems in the context of the Rio Conventions and harnessing synergies in their implementation; and raising awareness on, and gaining support for, a holistic approach to promote solutions that simultaneously address the environment, agriculture, nutrition, and health.
Other Rio Conventions Pavilion events included:
- Land for Life Day on 13 May, which underscored the effectiveness of sustainable land management in addressing poverty, food insecurity, water scarcity, climate change, and human security, among other challenges.
- Science Day on 14 May, which convened under the theme, ‘Science for Action: Land Restoration and Drought’;
- Sand and Dust Storms Day on 16 May, which provided an opportunity for knowledge sharing and capacity development among stakeholders and partners involved in sand and dust storms-related issues;
- Land Restoration Day on 17 May, which focused on the need to transform land governance and restore land-based natural capital to create jobs, reduce emissions, and restore harmony with nature; and
- Great Green Wall Day on 18 May, which featured the African-led Great Green Wall movement, whose objective is to, by 2030, restore 100 million hectares of degraded land, sequester 250 million tonnes of carbon, and create 10 million jobs in rural areas.
UNCCD COP 15 took place in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, from 9-20 May 2022. [Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB) Coverage of Rio Conventions Pavilion]