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Pacific Holds Post-CBD COP 10 Review

20 May 2011: A meeting to follow up on the 10th meeting of the Conference of Parties (COP 10) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) took place in Nadi, Fiji, from 16-20 May 2011, on the theme of "Implementing the Nagoya Outcomes: Review and Planning Meeting."

According to the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP), participants included representatives of the Cook Islands, Timor-Leste, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, as well as the Foundation of the Peoples of the South Pacific International (FSPI), International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), UN Environment Programme (UNEP), WWF South Pacific Programme and University of the South Pacific.

Participants reviewed the performance of the Pacific region at COP 10 and discussed how to move forward on its outcomes. Specific areas on the agenda included the Strategic Plan, funding opportunities, Protected Areas, Island Biodiversity, national biodiversity strategy action plans (NBSAPs), implications of the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) for the Pacific, as well as the sharing of experiences and lessons learned for participating in international negotiations.

SPREP's Biodiversity Adviser, Easter Galuvao, highlighted that the targets are within reach, as the Pacific region has worked to protect its unique biodiversity. He highlighted the existence of the Phoenix Islands Protected Area (PIPA) in Kiribati, the largest marine protected area (MPA) on earth and a World Heritage Site, and the Micronesia Challenge, a commitment by the Federated States of Micronesia, Marshall Islands, Palau, Guam and the Northern Marianas to conserve at least 30% of the near-shore marine resources and 20% of the terrestrial resources across Micronesia by 2020.

Many participants expressed support for the international process on biodiversity. It was noted that at COP 10, the Pacific made 33 interventions on 17 different issues, and it was the first time that opening and closing statements were made from Pacific negotiators on behalf of the region.

Participants noted that the key issues for the Pacific region have been protected areas, invasive species, marine and coastal biodiversity and knowledge of indigenous communities. [SPREP News] [Bionesian Blog]