Côte d’Ivoire and UNCCD Executive Secretary to present key outcomes of COP15

Abidjan, 18/05/22Ibrahim Thiaw, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Conference to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), and a high-level representative of Côte d’Ivoire, will hold a joint press conference on Friday, 20 May, to present the outcomes of the fifteenth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP15) to the UNCCD taking place in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire.
The key outcomes expected from COP15, which opened Monday, 9 May, and closes on 20 May, include a set of decisions agreed by 196 countries and the European Union that are Parties to this major UN’s land management treaty, to:

  • restore one billion hectares of degraded land between now and 2030,
  • boost drought preparedness, response and resilience,
  • future-proof land use against the impacts of climate change,
  • tackle escalating disaster risks such as sand and dust storms,
  • address desertification and land degradation as drivers of forced migration and displacement,
  • strengthen land rights and gender equality as important enablers for effective land restoration, and
  • promote decent land-based jobs for youth and strengthen youth participation in the UNCCD process.

In addition to the formal COP15 decisions, two political declarations were issued, namely:

  • The Abidjan Call issued by the Heads of State and Government attending the Summit hosted by Côte d’Ivoire President Alassane Ouattara on 9 May, and
  • Abidjan Declaration on achieving gender equality for successful land restoration, which emerged from the Gender Caucus chaired by the First Lady Dominique Ouattara

UNCCD COP15 is the first Conference of the Parties of the three Rio Conventions meetings to be held in 2022. The fifteenth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP15) to the Convention on Biological Diversity and the twenty-seventh session of the Conference of the Parties (COP27) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change will convene later this year in Kunming, China and Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, respectively. 

During the Heads of State Summit, President Ouattara also launched the Abidjan Legacy Programme, which aims to boost long-term environmental sustainability across major value chains in Côte d’Ivoire while protecting and restoring forests and lands and improving communities’ resilience to climate change, which will require mobilization of US$1.5 billion over the next five year

The Closing Press Conference will take place in-person at the COP15 Press Conference Room – MET 02 (Salle des Fêtes). It will also be webcast live via https://bit.ly/3G2ybkf and streamed to UNCCD YouTube channel via https://bit.ly/38EPZWe.

Friday, 20 May 2022
13:00-13:45 hrs (UTC/GMT)

Heads of State, ministers and close to 7000 delegates from 196 countries attended the conference on the future of land management, alongside private sector, civil society, women, youth leaders and media representatives. A high-level segment took place on 9-10 May.

The COP15 theme, Land. Life. Legacy: From scarcity to prosperity, is a call to action to ensure land, which is the lifeline on this planet, continues to benefit present and future generations.  

UNCCD unites governments, scientists, policymakers, the private sector and communities around a shared vision to restore and manage the world’s land.

About the UNCCD
The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) is the global vision and voice for land. We unite governments, scientists, policymakers, private sector and communities around a shared vision and global action to restore and manage the world’s land for the sustainability of humanity and the planet. Much more than an international treaty signed by 197 parties, UNCCD is a multilateral commitment to mitigating today’s impacts of land degradation and advancing tomorrow’s land stewardship in order to provide food, water, shelter and economic opportunity to all people in an equitable and inclusive manner. 

For more information and to register, contact: Wagaki Wischnewski, press@unccd.int

Author: Willem Van Cotthem

Honorary Professor of Botany, University of Ghent (Belgium). Scientific Consultant for Desertification and Sustainable Development.

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