The UNU Institute for the Advanced Study of Sustainability (UNU-IAS), in partnership with the Ministry of the Environment Japan (MOEJ) and the Global Environmental Outreach Centre (GEOC), co-organised a symposium to commemorate International Day for Biological Diversity on 20 May 2021. In addition to this, GEOC had an online poster gallery celebrating ‘Life and Biodiversity’ and the UNU-IAS Operating Unit Ishikawa/Kanazawa held a virtual tour of the Kanazawa area on 21 May 2021.
The theme for this year was “We’re part of the solution #ForNature” and the symposium shared the latest developments on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework and initiatives undertaken in Japan. It also addressed the importance of a one-health approach, partnerships, localisations, and evidence-based decision-making.
Hiroyosi Sasagawa (State Minister of the Environment, Japan) expressed Japan’s continued commitment in contributing to the discussion of the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework based on its experiences as the host country that adopted the Aichi Biodiversity Targets and that has been leading the International Satoyama Initiative. Akio Takemoto (Programme Head, UNU-IAS) highlighted the importance of strengthening synergies between biodiversity and climate to achieve multiple international goals as the world faces challenges posed by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic starting with projects within UNU-IAS. Elizabeth Maruma Mrema (Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity) expressed gratitude to the organisers for conducting the event and expressed her hope to continue working with Japan for the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.
During the keynote presentation, Kazuhiko Takeuchi (Visiting Professor, UNU-IAS) introduced the latest developments on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework and Reo Kawamura (Director, Office for Mainstreaming Biodiversity, MOEJ) presented the current status of biodiversity in Japan and highlighted the result of Japan Biodiversity Outlook 3 focusing on the need for transformative change to restore biodiversity.
A panel discussion shared views on generating political support for policy integrations, the importance of localising international goals, and accelerating biodiversity actions through partnerships. In closing, Tsunao Watanabe (Senior Programme Coordinator, UNU-IAS) addressed that 2021 is the first year of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration and reiterated continued UNU-IAS commitment to realising a resilient and sustainable society through partnerships while also focusing on ecosystem restoration.
For a full event overview, and to view presentations and a recording of the event, visit the UNU-IAS website.