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UN Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in Bonn - The environmental programme

Hartmut Stahl and Katja Kukatz

elni Review 2008, Issue 1,  pp. 24-25.

When Germany hosts the 9th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in May 2008, approximately 5000 participants from 190 Member States are expected in Bonn. The delegates of the UN discuss possibilities for stopping the ongoing worldwide destruction of nature. In the run-up to the conference, about 1200 experts hold a prior meeting; besides the experts, about 120 environment ministers are expected. This means not only a tremendous challenge for the organisers but also for the environment. Experts are anticipating, for instance, additional greenhouse gas emissions of around 20,000 tons of CO2-equivalent, mainly caused by the international flights of the delegates.
As a result, the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity as well as the German Federal Government are aiming to create a suitable framework which gives consideration to the concerns of biodiversity and, more generally, to the protection of nature and the environment. On behalf of the Federal Environment Ministry, Öko-Institut is developing a comprehensive environmental programme for the Conference, thereby undertaking an exemplary role. One of the declared goals of the Federal Government is to hold the Conference in a carbon-neutral manner. Key areas that are addressed by the environmental programme for the UN Conference in Bonn comprise waste management, the environmentally friendly transportation of the participants, the conservation of resources in the area of energy and water as well as a catering service that makes a contribution to the promotion of agrobiodiversity. From a global perspective, climate protection is currently one of the greatest challenges of environmental policy and therefore plays a key role in the environmental programme.

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