Daily report for 21 May 2024

26th Meeting of the CBD Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA 26) and 4th Meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Implementation (SBI 4)

The fourth meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Implementation (SBI 4) opened on Tuesday, in Nairobi, Kenya. Delegates addressed organizational matters, before initiating discussions on review of implementation, and mechanisms for planning, monitoring, reporting, and review.


Chair Chirra Achalender Reddy (India) opened SBI 4, urging participants to invest their “time, energy, and wisdom” in a productive meeting.

Inger Andersen, UN Environment Programme Executive Director, encouraged focus on the means of implementation and resource mobilization for the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF), noting that its goals are “aspirational and inspirational” and “implementable and monitorable.”

CBD Acting Executive Secretary David Cooper underlined the commitments and progress made thus far, and expressed hope that SBI 4 participants will continue building on this work through their “clear determination to succeed.”

Liu Ning, China, on behalf of the 15th meeting of the conference of the parties (COP 15) President Huang Runqiu, Minister of Ecology and Environment, China, urged global action for GBF implementation, including through implementation initiatives and contributions to the GBF Fund.

Ambassador Pedro León Cortés Ruíz, Colombia, on behalf of the COP 16 Presidency, said the COP 16 theme, “Peace with Nature,” addresses the direct and indirect drivers of biodiversity loss and the necessary reconciliation with nature.

Senegal for the AFRICAN GROUP underlined the need for adequate means of implementation for global action to address biodiversity loss, welcoming intersessional work by expert groups on financial reporting and resource mobilization.

Cambodia, for the ASIA-PACIFIC GROUP, stressed, among others, that capacity building and resource mobilization are critical to ensure effective GBF implementation.

Argentina for the LATIN AMERICAN AND CARRIBEAN GROUP (GRULAC) highlighted capacity building and development, including technology transfer, and resource mobilization, calling on developed countries to deliver on their obligations under the Convention. 

The EUROPEAN UNION (EU) underscored the need for: functioning systems to assist with planning, monitoring, reporting, and review; adequate financial and human resources; and modalities to operationalize technical and scientific cooperation.

SWITZERLAND, on behalf of JUSSCANNZ, highlighted the need to operationalize and implement the GBF by: reviewing the progress in updating national biodiversity strategies and action plans (NBSAPs); defining procedures for the global review of collective progress; ensuring adequate means of implementation; and enhancing cooperation with other conventions and international organizations.

Major groups of stakeholders stressed their concerns regarding: the lack of full and effective participation of Indigenous Peoples and local communities (IPLCs), and other stakeholders in NBSAP review processes; and the prevalence of harmful subsidies and corporate-led initiatives. They highlighted the need for: mandatory social and environmental safeguards; consistent application of gender-responsive and human rights-based approaches; inclusion of community-based data; and provision of implementation means in accordance with the principle of common but differentiated responsibilities, and in a culturally-appropriate manner.

Organization Matters

Delegates adopted the provisional agenda (CBD/SBI/4/1) and the organization of work (CBD/ SBI/4/1/Add.1) without amendments.

Many delegates lamented the late preparation of documents, noting the disproportionate burden placed upon smaller delegations. Acting Executive Secretary Cooper provided relevant clarifications.

Angela Lozan (Republic of Moldova) was elected rapporteur.

Review of Implementation

The Secretariat introduced relevant documents on: progress in preparation of updated NBSAPs and the establishment of targets in alignment with the GBF (CBD/SBI/4/2); and on implementation of the multi-year programme of work (MYPOW) on Article 8(j) and related provisions (CBD/SBI/4/3).

Many parties offered progress reports on efforts to update their NBSAPs and national targets, committing to submit them prior to COP 16.

Ethiopia for the AFRICAN GROUP, BURKINA FASO, the DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO (DRC), CÔTE D’IVOIRE, LIBERIA, EGYPT, LESOTHO, MOROCCO, and INDIA urged a whole-of-society and whole-of-government approach. UGANDA, GHANA, ZIMBABWE, BURKINA FASO, KENYA, DJIBOUTI, VANUATU, MONGOLIA, ARMENIA, IRAQ, SUDAN, and the REPUBLIC OF MOLDOVA expressed appreciation for support mechanisms facilitating the NBSAP process, notably the Global Environment Facility (GEF) funded GBF Early Action Support.

GABON called for addressing challenges in submissions, including by discussing the relevant submission template, contained in Annex I of Decision 15/6. MALAWI emphasized the importance of ensuring a standard approach for effective progress tracking. The UK, PERU, and GHANA urged using the submission template to facilitate the global analysis.

The AFRICAN GROUP, COLOMBIA, BRAZIL, the SYRIAN ARAB REPUBLIC, the RUSSIAN FEDERATION, and others lamented insufficient support through the GEF and the GBF Fund for updating NBSAPs, with the RUSSIAN FEDERATION and others calling for providing support to “all” parties.

CUBA, BURKINA FASO, PAKISTAN, and others urged commitment of adequate financial resources in a timely manner. CÔTE D’IVOIRE and the DRC suggested further efforts on awareness raising, capacity building, and technical support. SAUDI ARABIA called for establishing capacity building workshops. INDIA stressed that implementation means should match GBF ambition, in line with national priorities.

ARGENTINA, BRAZIL, INDONESIA, BURUNDI, EGYPT, OMAN, LEBANON, IRAQ, SOUTH AFRICA, and others called for adequate means for planning, monitoring, reporting, review, and implementation. The COOK ISLANDS and TONGA urged strengthening capacity building for small island developing states.

NORWAY highlighted the NBSAP Accelerator Partnership and the approval of a new round of project preparation grants through the GBF Fund. INDIA called for a transparent mechanism for grant preparation for accessing the GBF Fund. SWITZERLAND proposed discussing the need for support by the GEF under resource mobilization. The UK encouraged other parties to use the available support mechanisms, including the High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People, the Global Ocean Alliance, and the NBSAP Accelerator Partnership.

The EU, SWITZERLAND, JAPAN, CHINA, and others urged parties to submit revised NBSAPs and national targets by COP 16 for a global analysis, with CANADA suggesting clarifying the links between NBSAPs and the global analysis in the draft recommendation. COLOMBIA and others proposed setting a deadline for submissions in the draft recommendation, prior to COP 16.


MEXICO, GUATEMALA, and INDONESIA suggested recognizing in the draft recommendation those parties that submitted their revised NBSAPs and those that face challenges, including suggestions for overcoming these challenges.

On the MYPOW for Article 8(j) and related provisions, MEXICO highlighted the adoption of four indicators on traditional knowledge and suggested establishing synergies with the Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore of the World Intellectual Property Organization. GUATEMALA, COLOMBIA, and INDONESIA welcomed the report, stressing its usefulness for national efforts towards GBF implementation. BRAZIL urged to initiate outstanding tasks. JAPAN said the MYPOW requires further discussion. The DRC stressed the need to “ensure IPLCs are inseparable” for inclusive GBF implementation.

Major stakeholder groups called for: the full, equitable, inclusive, effective, meaningful, and gender-responsive participation of IPLCs, women, youth, and persons with disabilities in the setting of national targets and reviews of NBSAPs, and financial support to enable their participation; a strong regulatory framework and quantified binding commitments, including in the field of mobilizing resources and redirecting perverse incentives in revised NBSAPs to align policies and financial flows with the GBF; and financial support to developing countries to complete NBSAP reviews and to initiate remaining tasks under the MYPOW related to Article 8(j) and related provisions.

Intergovernmental organizations and conventions expressed readiness to continue supporting parties, including through: a country-driven GEF-8 Early Action Support project; facilitating agricultural sector involvement in regional and subregional dialogues; and making guidance and tools available. Additional language was proposed, with party support, to recall obligations under international law to implement the GBF in accordance with a human rights-based approach.

Chair Reddy noted a conference room paper will be prepared for further discussions.

Mechanisms for Planning, Monitoring, Reporting, and Review

The Secretariat introduced CBD/SBI/4/4, on mechanisms for planning, monitoring, reporting, and review; CBD/SBI/4/4/Add.1, on the modus operandi for the open-ended forum for voluntary country review; and CBD/SBI/4/4/Add.2/Rev.1, on procedures for the global review of collective progress in GBF implementation.

Regarding the mechanisms for planning, monitoring, reporting, and review, the UK urged integrating recommendations from the 25th session of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA 25) into this SBI recommendation. The EU preferred not to reopen discussion on SBSTTA 25 recommendations. 

Colombia for GRULAC, supported by BRAZIL, supported the enhanced multidimensional approach to planning, monitoring, reporting, and review, and, with many others welcomed the regional and subregional dialogues.

South Africa for the AFRICAN GROUP, with MOROCCO, GHANA, SOUTH SUDAN, GABON, UGANDA, ZIMBABWE, CÔTE D’IVOIRE, and CAMEROON, highlighted, among others, that: the template for national reports can be improved; voluntary peer reviews should be distinguished from other forms of analysis; the analysis of means of implementation, resources, and tools should form part of the global analysis; and successful implementation of the monitoring framework depends on data quality.

The EU, MALAYSIA, GHANA, and CHINA supported the template for the next national reports. ARGENTINA urged a party-led process in the relevant ad hoc scientific and technical advisory group. INDONESIA suggested further training on the use of the online reporting tool.

GRULAC noted that the process for non-state actors reporting their voluntary commitments will require further refinement. MOROCCO suggested two separate formats: one for stakeholders such as IPLCs and the other for the private sector. BRAZIL urged deleting a reference to private sector certification or validation in the commitments of non-state actors.

Stressing the importance of the global review, NEW ZEALAND urged specifying inputs and outcomes of the technical dialogue phase and to foresee a COP response to the global review. MEXICO urged a robust, effective, and simplified global review. JAPAN called for efficiency and CANADA for considering traditional knowledge.

INDIA urged the global review be comprehensive and region-specific, and reflect challenges. The PHILIPPINES noted that the global review will be complemented by the ASEAN Biodiversity Outlook. The RUSSIAN FEDERATION called for a party-led process.

On the development of procedures for a global review, the EU, SWITZERLAND, and the UK preferred discussing the results of piloting of the modus operandi of the open-ended forum for voluntary country review during SBI 5 before considering its extension, with CANADA recommending the forum report to COP 16. The AFRICAN GROUP urged the open-ended forum to be facilitative rather than punitive, not placing an additional burden on parties. ARGENTINA and the RUSSIAN FEDERATION suggested spending limited time on this issue. ARGENTINA urged focusing on the global review’s modalities, noting it should not include a global analysis. CHINA highlighted party-driven global arrangements.

ZIMBABWE and ETHIOPIA supported the establishment of the advisory committee for the global review of collective progress, opposed by the EU, NORWAY, and the UK. The EU proposed to instead appoint two envoys to capture gaps across regions, proposing respective terms of reference, with NORWAY calling for a process inclusive of major groups. GRULAC stressed the importance of party leadership. SWITZERLAND highlighted a Bern III conference suggestion for relevant multilateral environmental agreements to contribute to the global report. Discussions will continue.

In the Breezeways

While some delegates have only just arrived in Nairobi, for many others the UN Nairobi campus already feels like home — having spent many late nights there in prolonged SBSTTA 26 deliberations the previous week. One seasoned negotiator urged that if one lesson was to be learnt from last week’s process, it was “to not spend too much time on initial presentations” and discussions in plenary, but rather to “get down to addressing the sticky issues early on.”

SBI 4 started off in style, focusing on both the review of implementation, and mechanisms for planning, reporting, and review. The first led to countries zooming in on their current national process for updating and aligning their NBSAPs with the GBF, before zooming out to consider the global and regional levels as they discussed the upcoming global review of collective GBF implementation.

Further information