Cop10: “Historic Achievement”

November 1st, 2010  |  Published in Eco & Industry, On the TechWatch

It rarely happens that a global environmental conference earns praise from NGO. But the meeting on bio-diversity (Cop10), that ended Saturday morning in Nagoya, was celebrated even by Jim Leape, Director General of WWF International, as “historic achievement”. Obviously the “wonderful mood” and the “can-do” atmosphere of the first days, the TechWatcher reported about, could not be totally spoiled.

In a nutshell:

Delegates agreed to to set aside 17% of land and 10% of the sea for preserving biodiversity. That in itself is that impressive, with around 12 % of the landmass under protection right now.

But in addition governments are going to set targets┬áreform harmful subsidies. Furthermore at least the WWF is pleased, “that the new deal also requires countries to ensure biodiversity is incorporated into national accounts – an important political signal which has the potential to set in motion a different approach to economic decision making.”

And at least, industrial countries and the developing world agreed on a kind of profit-sharing deal about patents won from animal or plants genes under the Nagoya Protocol. But the developing world did not succeed with its demand to pay profits retrospectively since the begin of the colonization. Only for developments after this conference profits will be shared, although there is still plenty of work to do to hammer out the details.

The Big Minus: The host Japan put some money on the table. But by and large, the industrial world came with empty coffers to Nagoya. Just when we need bold investments in environmental protection most, the developed world turns from excess to austerity. This bodes ill for the protection of flora and fauna, among other things.

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