Historic Global Agreement on Biodiversity Highlights Urgent Need to Conserve, Restore Wildlife Around the World

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A historic agreement reached at the U.N. Biodiversity Conference by more than 200 countries marks a global consensus that the biodiversity crisis can no longer wait. The agreement is headlined by the so-called “30x30” framework, a commitment to conserve 30 percent of land and water by the year 2030. The negotiations also include aid to developing countries to help meet the agreement’s ambitious conservation targets. Although the United States is not party to the agreement, the 30x30 framework mirrors the “America the Beautiful” commitment by President Joe Biden. 

“With the effects of climate change, loss of habitat, and other crises rippling and compounding in ecosystems around the world, it is impossible to overstate the urgency of the biodiversity crisis,” said Dr. Bruce Stein, chief scientist for the National Wildlife Federation. “The health of species and ecosystems crosses human borders and boundaries — supporting migratory birds, preventing wildlife diseases and maintaining delicately balanced ecosystems all rely on healthy plant and animal populations across the globe. This historic agreement brings together much of the world to sound the alarm and commit to real action on biodiversity. 

“It is disappointing that the United States is one of the only nations on Earth that is not party to the UN Biodiversity Convention. However, the United States has a long history of acting to conserve its rich diversity of plant and animal life, and is poised to take another major step forward through passage of the bipartisan Recovering America’s Wildlife Act, which will proactively recover species before it’s too late.” 

Additional measures in the agreement include:

  • A target to halt the loss of high biodiversity areas by 2030, which contain particularly large numbers of rare and unique species.
  • Acknowledgement of the important roles and contributions of Indigenous peoples and local communities in land conservation with commitment to ensuring their rights are respected and preserved, with their free, prior and informed consent.
  • The elimination, phase out or reform by 2030 of approximately $500 billion per year in subsidies and other incentives that are harmful for biodiversity.


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