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Statement from ICLEI BiodiverCities Advisory Committee on aligning biodiversity and climate change in local and subnational governments, towards UNFCCC COP 21

Based on discussions at the 5th ICLEI BiodiverCities Advisory Committee meeting, the themes emerging from the 2013 International BiodiverCities Conference, and the 2013 International Local Action for Biodiversity (LAB) Workshop, in Joondalup, Australia.

the ICLEI BiodiverCities Advisory Committee has drafted a statement urging the ICLEI Global Executive Committee to recognise the importance of urban biodiversity in achieving sustainable development and human well-being, and in addressing global environmental change (and particularly climate change).

As we look towards the UNFCCC COP 21 in 2015, in Paris, France, and the negotiation of a new global agreement which will lock the World into a trajectory for addressing climate change, we are currently at a significant moment in time which can influence these outcomes. Biodiversity is under tremendous threat, both within and surrounding in local and subnational government boundaries, and this will be exacerbated by the now unavoidable impacts of climate change. Local and subnational governments are central to addressing climate change impacts and to contributing towards a solution, and urban biodiversity as an adaptive and mitigation tool provides a sustainable and cost-effective way to increase resilience.

As a first step, integration of biodiversity into the revised ‘ICLEI Local Government Climate Roadmap’ and the ‘Nantes Declaration of Mayors and Subnational Leaders on Climate Change’ is urgently needed. In the statement below, ‘Biodiversity and Climate Change: Making the Links in Local and Subnational Governments’, the Biodiversity Advisory Committee have outlined some suggestions for advancing a complementary urban biodiversity and climate change agenda.

Download the statement here.

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