The African CSOs Biodiversity Alliance commends the secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, and the co-chairs of the Open-Ended Working Group on the Post 2020 Global Biodiversity Framework for preparing documents to advance negotiations on the new deal for nature and people. We welcome the 1st draft of the Post2020 GBF and recognize that it represents improvement from the updated zero draft. Most notable, is the inclusion of quantities on targets as this gives an opportunity for another layer of consultations premised not only on the elements of the targets, but also on the proposed quantities.
We commend that targets 1 to 8 address all the direct drivers of biodiversity loss as stipulated in the Global Assessment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services. While we welcome all targets (9 to 13) on “Meeting people’s needs through sustainable use and benefit-sharing”, we worry that these are not measurable or actionable in their current state. We commend that target 14 to 21 on tools and solutions for implementation and mainstreaming, represent an ambition higher than we have ever seen before for biodiversity.
Overarching comments: In the 2011-2020 strategic plan, no Aichi Target was met, while only 6 sub-targets (of 58) were met (Global Biodiversity Outlook 5). Two of these sub-targets focused on areas under protection, and succeeded partially due to a singular focus on meeting these two targets from about 2015-2020. However, while protected areas were gazetted at increasing scale and speed, commensurate improvements in management were not made, and many conflicts with affected communities have either arisen, or remain as critical issues from the past. This focus may even have been a ‘red herring’ strategy, enabling failures in more important aspects of conservation to go un-noticed - such as stopping the drivers of nature’s decline, or of inequitable implementation of conservation in some protected areas, and failures to address sustainable use and equitable benefit sharing to the extent needed.