ICLEI CBC partnered and chaired two key side events at the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) 21, which was held in Montreal Canada, between 11 and 14 December 2017.

 The Natural Systems for Sustainable Cities: Mainstreaming biodiversity into urban infrastructure development side event was organized by ICLEI CBC, in partnership with the CBD Secretariat, Futurearth, The Nature Conservancy (TNC) and SwedeBio. It took place on Wednesday 13 December and was one of the bigger side events at SBSTTA with a very good turnout.

The side event was in the form of a Davos-style panel discussion and showcased all of the partners’ existing and new initiatives, focussing on infrastructure and the development of innovative and transformative tools, methodologies and capacity development.

Amy Fraenkel, Principal Officer, CBD Secretariat, introduced the ‘Natural Systems and Sustainable Cities’ project which the Secretariat is leading in collaboration with the other partners; M’Lisa Colbert, Science Officer, Future Earth, focused on New scientific findings on urban ecosystem services and the threats and opportunities associated with urban expansion into especially biodiverse areas; Ingrid Coetzee, Senior Manager: Biodiversity and Nature-based Solutions, ICLEI CBC, showcased ICLEI’s work on local authorities integrating biodiversity into sustainable urban infrastructure development; and Linda Krueger, Senior Policy Advisor, The Nature Conservancy, presented on TNC’s work on natural solutions for green urban infrastructure,

The Group of Leading Subnational Governments toward Aichi Biodiversity Targets (GoLS,) side event on the Importance of Subnational Governments for mainstreaming biodiversity into the sectors of energy and mining, infrastructure, manufacturing and processing industry and health, took place on Thursday 14 December. It was attended by representatives from Aichi Prefecture, Quebec, Ontario, CONABIO (on behalf of ANAAE), nrg4SD and ICLEI CBC, the CBD Secretariat, Ministry of Environment, Japan and Climate Change Canada. Representatives from Gangwon, Catalonia and Campeche attended through Skype.

The side event was formally opened by Ms. Ayako Suganuma, Director General of Aichi Prefecture. The subnational governments presented their governments’ key initiatives in different sectors: Gangwon and ANAAE on energy and mining initiatives; Catalonia and Québec focussed on infrastructure; Aichi on manufacturing and processing; and Ontario on their initiatives in the health sector. The Network of Regional Governments for Sustainable Development (nrg4SD) presented their Regions4Biodiversity Learning Platform (R4BLP) and ICLEI CBC announced and presented the new Guidelines for an integrated approach in the development and implementation of national, subnational and local biodiversity strategies and action plans. These guidelines represent a major contribution by ICLEI CBC to mainstreaming biodiversity. The GoLS side event marked the first public announcement of these new guidelines.

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