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UNEP-WCMC Highlights Biodiversity-Climate Change Nexus

Unep-Wcmc24 June 2014: A policy brief issued by the UN Environment Programme - World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) explains the importance of integrating biodiversity concerns in climate change policies, programmes and projects and presents recommendations and tools for achieving synergies.

The policy brief, titled 'Addressing Climate Change: Why Biodiversity Matters,' describes the importance of biodiversity ecosystem services and how these are interconnected with climate change, followed by recommendations for achieving synergies in implementing climate change and biodiversity objectives. Recommendations include: coordinating policies, programmes and projects; considering biodiversity when establishing Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions (NAMAs); harnessing synergies in mitigation strategies, such as for REDD+; and ensuring integrated approaches in national planning such as National Adaptation Programmes of Action (NAPAs) for climate change or National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs) for implementing the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).

The brief further recommends assessing the impacts of policies, programmes and projects on biodiversity before, during and after implementation to ensure adaptive management and informed evaluation and reporting. The final section describes the use of biodiversity criteria, safeguards, principles, standards and guidance and provides examples of criteria that have been developed by various organizations.

The brief was informed by a project on biodiversity criteria conducted by the German International Climate Initiative (IKI) in collaboration with UNEP-WCMC, Birdlife International and the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN). The results of this project are available as a technical report. [UNEP-WCMC Press Release][Publication: Addressing Climate Change: Why Biodiversity Matters][Publication: Using Criteria to Strengthen Biodiversity Considerations: Recommendations for the International Climate Initiative]