CBD : new publications

I am pleased to inform you that the CBD Secretariat has published two new volumes in its Technical Series:

The Conservation and Use of Wildlife-based Resources: the Bushmeat Crisis”, published jointly with CIFOR, highlights the challenges related to the overexploitation of wildlife in many tropical forest regions, and outlines possible policy responses; and

the “Cross-Sectoral Toolkit for the Conservation and Sustainable Management of Forest Biodiversity” lists approaches for the integration of forest biodiversity aspects into decision making processes of other sectors.

Both publications are available at


Hardcopies will be available during the ninth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP) in Bonn, Germany, May 19-30, 2008, or can be ordered from secretariat@cbd.int

Best regards,

Tim Christophersen
Environmental Affairs Officer for forest biodiversity
Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity
United Nations Environment Programme
413 St-Jacques O., Suite 800
Montreal, QC., H2Y 1N9, Canada
Tel. main: +1-514-288-2220
Tel. direct: +1-514-287-7036
Fax: +1-514-288-6588

African Environment Day – 3 March 2008 (IISD / CBD)

A message of Richard Sherman <richards@iisd.org>

to African SD Policy Makers <africasd-l@lists.iisd.ca>

Ahmed Djoghlaf, Executive Secretary, of Convention on Biological Diversity has released a statement on the occasion of African Environment Day – 3 March 2008. The full statement is available online at:

Progress on access and benefit-sharing (ENB / IISD / CBD)

Read at : Earth Negotiations Bulletin <enb@iisd.org>

Linkages Update <linkages-buzz@lists.iisd.ca>

Linkages Update – Thursday, 7 February 2008


Geneva, 26 January—The sixth meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group on Access and Benefit-sharing (ABS) of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) made considerable progress in producing a short and concise working document on the international regime, consisting of sections on the main components and lists of items “to be further elaborated with the aim of incorporating them in the international regime” in case there was agreement in principle, or “for further consideration,” in case of disagreement or need for further clarification. The 21-25 January 2008 meeting took place in Geneva, Switzerland. The outcome will be submitted for consideration by the Conference of the Parties to the CBD at its ninth meeting (19-30 May 2008, Bonn, Germany). More.

UNCCD : Global Desertification Meeting Yields Mixed Results (Google Alert / EarthTrends

Read at :

Google Alert – desertification


Global Desertification Meeting Yields Mixed Results

By Amy Cassara on Monday, September 17, 2007.


On Saturday, the governing body for the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) concluded its 8th Conference of Parties (COP) meeting in Madrid. While organizers were happy to report the passage of a new 10-year plan of action and the appointment of a new Secretary-General, the conference’s failure to approve a final budget inspired criticism from some environmental groups. Continue reading “UNCCD : Global Desertification Meeting Yields Mixed Results (Google Alert / EarthTrends”

Climate change and desertification two sides of same coin (Google Alert / Terra Daily)

Read at :

Google Alert – desertification


Climate change and desertification two sides of same coin

by Staff Writers
Madrid (AFP) Sept 13, 2007

Climate change and desertification are two sides of the same coin and must be tackled together, according to participants at the Madrid conference on desertification. “These two issues are very intimately related in the way you can describe them as two halfs of a coin,” according to Yvo de Boer, executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

Spanish Environment Minister Cristina Narbona also addressed the twin problem during a round table discussion Wednesday on “desertification and adaptation to climate change” at the UN-sponsored conference which opened on September 3.

“Desertification, the loss of biodiversity and climate change are three inextricably linked aspects” of the problem being addressed at the conference by ministers and scientists from around the globe, according to de Boer.

“Climate change already has had a major impact on desertification and what the scientists are telling us is that if we fail on climate change the impact in terms of desertification is going to be much worse because you’ll see changes in rainfall pattern leading to more desertification,” said de Boer, a Dutchman.

“Not putting in place renewable sources of energy will lead to people cutting more trees to produce fire wood and contribute to further desertification. About 80 percent of deforestation in tropical areas is caused by people gathering fire wood simply to cook their food,” de Boer added.

Guatemalan Environment Minister Juan Mario Dary Fuentes illustrated the link between poverty, deforestation and desertification, a phenomenon threatening an estimated 48 percent of his country’s surface area.

Portuguese Environment Minister Humberto Rosa, whose country currently holds the EU presidency, meanwhile said standing up to creeping deforestation, fighting poverty and pushing more sustainable development could help solve the problem.

According to Narbona, there is no need for a new convention to combat climate change and desertification.

Rather, “we must improve existing mechanisms.”

Spain is all too aware of the urgency to act with one third of its territory facing desertification which requires action such as more efficient watering of crops and better desalinisation techniques for seawater supplies.

In de Boer’s view, what is in short supply is “the application and concrete realisation of policies.”

This eighth conference bringing together the 191 signatory nations to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCDD) will at the end of the conference on Friday seek to ratify a ten-year action plan to combat desertification.

De Boer said he hoped that this conference would lead ultimately to the “revitalisation” of a strategy to combat desertification and climate change.

What is needed, he said, is concrete “policy implementation and actually doing things.

“This conference is important because it is looking at a revitalised strategy for this convention and it is discussing the budget that will have to make that revitalised strategy possible,” de Boer said, predicting a new strategy whose success would depend ultimately on its financial clout.

“It will be interesting to see at the end of the meeting if we arrive at a situation where countries say ‘yes, we like this new strategy and we are willing to pay for its implementation’,” he said.

De Boer concluded that the conference would, having underlined the link between climate change and desertification, stress that nations “need to act on those two issues in synergy.”

9 Steps to End Poverty (Google Alert / Netscape)

Read at :

Google Alert – poverty



Greg Hartnett

Welcome to the blog of Internet entrepreneur, husband, father, and activist, Greg Hartnett. Hopefully I can provide some insightful ideas and commentary. If not, at least I can vent…



9 Steps to End Poverty

September 6th, 2007

There are more than a billion people on the planet living in poverty. I’m not talking about flipping burgers at McDonalds for minimum wage poverty. I’m talking about extreme poverty – characterized by the World Bank as living on US $1 or less per day. In today’s age of unparalleled opportunity and wealth, this is morally repugnant.

In his emotional and eloquent plea to the world’s rich, “The End of Poverty” economist Jeffrey Sachs outlines a detailed plan to end extreme poverty worldwide by the year 2025. The basic tenets follow: Continue reading “9 Steps to End Poverty (Google Alert / Netscape)”

Gambia: WABSA Newsletter and desertification (Google Alert / allAfrica / The Daily Observer)

Read at :

Google Alert – desertification



Gambia: Wabsa Launches Newsletter

The West African Bird Study Association (WABSA) has recently launched its newsletter. This initiative emanated from the ambition to participate actively in the sensitisation of the general public on issues pertaining to environment. In their maiden edition, an emphasis has been put on desertification, one of the growing threats to the African continent and the planet. Continue reading “Gambia: WABSA Newsletter and desertification (Google Alert / allAfrica / The Daily Observer)”

Desertification, Climate Change and Biodiversity (dgAlert / Environment and People)

Read at :

dg Water Resources Management


Environment and People  (see my Blogroll)


As the world moves further into the 21st century, there is no question that its biodiversity is under threat from several sources. Perhaps the greatest of them all is the sheer ignorance of what it comprises. Put simply, biodiversity refers to the number of species of wild plants and animals a country possesses. The late Indian environmental journalist, Anil Agarwal, who founded the Centre for Science and Environment in Delhi, used to say that the Gross Nature Product is more important than the Gross Domestic Product for the poor majority in most developing countries. One can extend this rhetorical statement to argue that the greater a country’s biodiversity, the richer it is potentially. By 2050, the world is expected to have 9 billion people – as against 6 billion today. The tragedy is that while the biggest sources of biodiversity are in tropical countries, they are the least informed about what they possess, leading to charges of “bio-piracy” against industrial countries which plunder these resources and make extortionate profits on them. The UN has a Convention on Biological Diversity in place since 1993, which has been signed by most countries, but the protection it offers to countries to protect their natural resources remains largely on paper. Continue reading “Desertification, Climate Change and Biodiversity (dgAlert / Environment and People)”

CBD SBSTTA 12 addresses biofuels and climate change (IISD / Linkages Update)

Read at :

Linkages Update – Thursday, 12 July 2007

Earth Negotiations Bulletin <enb@iisd.org>


Paris, 7 July—The twelfth meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA 12) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) convened from 2-6 July 2007, in Paris, France. SBSTTA 12 adopted a number of recommendations to be forwarded to the ninth Conference of the Parties to the CBD, including on: the application of the ecosystem approach; the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation; dry and sub-humid lands; biodiversity and climate change; and biofuels. A number of issues with regard to climate change and biofuels remained outstanding and as a result, recommendations on these issues contain bracketed language. Immediately following SBSTTA 12, the second meeting of the CBD Working Group on the Review of Implementation convened in the same venue. This meeting is taking place from 9-13 July 2007.

Big cities: loss of natural resources and biodiversity (dgAlert / M&G)

Read at :

dg Environment and Development


Mail&Guardian online


Greedy cities consume Earth’s resources

Haider Rizvi | United Nations

Disproportionate growth of the world’s urban population could result in further loss of many forms of life on Earth, warn experts in the sciences of climate change and biodiversity.  Nearly 200 years ago, London was the only city in the world with more than one million people. Today, across the globe, there are more than 400 cities at least that size. While these cities occupy only 2% of the planet’s surface, according to the United Nations report World Population Prospects, their residents are responsible for at least 75% of the resources consumed by the global population, including a huge quantity of fossil fuels. Climate change is one of the main forces responsible for the enormous loss of biodiversity on Earth, say scientists specialising in these fields. Long-term changes in average temperatures can dramatically alter the habitats that provide life support for plant and animal species. With more than 3,2-billion people residing in the cities, for the first time the world’s urban population now exceeds the number of those living in rural areas. Continue reading “Big cities: loss of natural resources and biodiversity (dgAlert / M&G)”

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