Daily report for 9 October 2000

2nd IUCN World Conservation Congress

In the morning, a plenary panel briefed delegates on the results of the twelve interactive thematic sessions and their implications for the IUCN programme. In a Congress sitting, delegates considered a number of draft resolutions, witnessed the presentation of awards and learned the elections outcomes. In the afternoon, delegates convened for technical discussions on the independent external review of the IUCN programme, the programme and budget for the period between the 2nd and 3rd Congresses, and draft membership policy. Queen Noor presented Reuters Awards to ten journalists for excellence in reporting on environmental issues.


Representatives of the thematic sessions presented the outcomes of discussions.

LINKING PROTECTED AREAS AND ECOSYSTEM MANAGEMENT: This session identified several challenges: clarifying language and ideas; improved concept communications; and overcoming institutional barriers. It called for: political leadership; developing a shared vision; building vertical and horizontal partnerships; developing internal and external funding mechanisms; identifying benefits for people; adopting flexible strategies; involving all Commissions; and building an ecosystem management strategy in the IUCN programme and introducing it in the CBD.

ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH OF OCEANS AND COASTS: This session stressed reaching beyond protected areas and a broader ecosystem approach. It called upon the IUCN programme to address habitat protection, land-based sources of marine pollution, sustainable fisheries, governance and communication mechanisms.

ENVIRONMENT AND SECURITY: Session participants discussed the IUCN Task Force on Environment and Security, which tackles: impacts of insecurity on conservation efforts; resource scarcity and conflicts; incompatible resource use; conservation and cooperation; and conservation as a tool for disaster vulnerability reduction. It suggested that IUCN could also: organize an international conference on environment and security; collect lessons from members; build regional awareness; engage new stakeholders; fund environment and security projects around world; and advocate for peace.

FORESTS FOR LIFE: This session identified issues linked to deforestation and forest programmes and drew attention to links between forests and communities' livelihoods, food security and natural disasters.

ECOSPACES AND MARINE ECOSYSTEMS: This session considered access and benefit sharing, the need to balance representation of scientists between developing and developed countries, and the need for a global charter for sustainable development. Regarding marine ecosystems, it stressed that: fisheries evaluation should distinguish between impacts on resources and ecosystems; no single answer to the by-catch issue exists; and more research is required on the ecosystem level.

STRATEGIES FOR AVERTING THE WORLD WATER CRISIS: This session engaged in discussions about privatization of water resources, the food security versus nature conservation clash and the urgent need to move from policy to action. It noted that water allocation is a social, economic and political choice requiring tools, legislation and effective participation, and that safe drinking water makes for lasting peace.

MOBILIZING KNOWLEDGE FOR BIODIVERSITY: By way of video, the session's proceedings were presented, focusing on how to capture and disseminate knowledge for biodiversity management. The main outcome was identification of the need for a knowledge management strategy. A working group was formed to ensure that an IUCN culture toward knowledge management is established.

SOWING THE SEEDS FOR SUSTAINABILITY, AGRICULTURE, BIODIVERSITY, ECONOMY AND SOCIETY: This session identified key issues including: the indirect and direct influence of agro-industry over farmers, especially in developing countries; the often negative effects of market liberalization on farmers; and the need to focus GMO research on risk assessment. The session recommended that IUCN develop methods of assessment for multifunctionality and guidelines for integration of the Biosafety Protocol.

LOCAL SOLUTIONS THAT PROMOTE SOCIAL EQUITY AND CULTURAL DIVERSITY: This session concluded that integrating gender issues, indigenous people and local communities into decision making is the most cost-effective approach. It recommended, inter alia, building more capacity for participatory management and expanding IUCN's base of social scientists.

DEVELOPING AND INVESTING IN BIODIVERSITY BUSINESS: This session identified examples of partnerships between NGOs and corporations to develop investment funds for conservation. Participants hoped that such funds would create a new sector of the economy, acknowledging the considerable expertise required.

INTEGRATING BIODIVERSITY SCIENCE AND ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY AND MANAGEMENT: This session identified: what the practitioners want; what the scientists share; and the barriers to science and policy. It recommended that IUCN encourage interdisciplinary work and make information useful to policy makers.

ECOLOGICAL LIMITS OF CLIMATE CHANGE: Session participants highlighted the need for IUCN to: create links between climate change and IUCN's core actions; improve understanding of climate change effects on nature and society; strengthen climate change adaptation techniques; ensure equitable solutions that support biodiversity; and build IUCN's capacity to tackle climate change and effectively participate in decisions.

In closing, Jeff McNeely, IUCN Senior Scientist, called for: allocation of resources to environmental monitoring, impact assessment and natural disasters response; sustainable forestry and water conservation; greater investments for biological security; and improved management of human behavior for sustainability.


CONSIDERATION OF PROPOSED RESOLUTIONS: Yolanda Kakabadse, IUCN President, noted contact groups would no longer meet. The following conservation resolutions were adopted: tiger conservation (CGR2.CNV001 Rev.1); Tibetan antelope (CGR2.CNV002 Rev.1); South Asian river dolphins (CGR2.CNV003); conservation of crested ibis (CGR2.CNV006); Saker falcon (CGR2.CNV007); Southern Hemisphere albatross (CGR2.CNV008); Indian Ocean marine turtles (CGR2.CNV009); marine turtles on the Atlantic Coast of Africa (CGR2.CNV010); the Middle and Lower Parana River (CGR2.CNV012); mining concessions and protected areas in Mesoamerica (CGR2.CNV014); protected areas and the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor (CGR2.CNV015); and a Marten's Clause for environmental protection (CGR2.CNV019).

The Nature Conservation Society of Japan and the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs endorsed the resolution on conservation of Kaisho Forest, Japan (CGR2.CNV017). Defenders of Wildlife and Lawyers for a Green Planet Institute opposed providing international support to Japan, due to its scientific whaling, which violates the international moratorium on whaling. This resolution was deferred.

Regarding the resolution promoting sustainable fisheries (CGR2.CNV021 Rev. 1), some delegates supported an amendment to specifically reference small-scale fisheries. The resolution was adopted as amended.

On climate change mitigation and land use (CGR2.CNV022 Rev.1), clarification was sought on references to Recommendation 7.1 of the Ramsar Convention and Decision V/4 of the CBD. Canada asked that GMOs and invasive species be referred to in separate paragraphs. The resolution was deferred.

On drought and flood mitigation strategies (CGR2.CNV023), Uganda and Kenya supported an additional operative paragraph on international cooperation and a relief fund for natural disasters in developing countries. The resolution was adopted with this provision.

On the introduction of alien vertebrate species (CGR2.CNV024 Rev.1), the United Arab Emirates Natural History Group, supported by the Sierra Club, opposed the revised resolution relating only to vertebrate species and asked that the original formulation, "non-native species," remain. Wren Green, IUCN Regional Councillor for Oceania, supported by the Nature Conservation Council of New South Wales and the United Kingdom, said the narrowing to vertebrates was voluntary to allow for a clean and precise text. The resolution was deferred.

On protected areas and the impacts of mining (CGR2.CNV025/PRG052), the US said federal laws regulate mining and suggested IUCN refrain from adopting positions on behalf of its members. Lawyers for a Green Planet opposed the revised resolution, claiming that substantive provisions have been omitted. Khawar Mumtaz, IUCN Regional Councillor for West Asia, agreed. The Bangladesh Coastal Area Resource Development and Management Association (CARDMA) asked that "environmental impact assessment" be defined and called for good practice guidelines. Members voted against the revised resolution and adopted the original resolution (CGR2.CNV025).

JOHN C. PHILLIPS MEMORIAL MEDAL: This medal was presented to E.O. Wilson, Curator of Entomology, Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University.

HONORARY MEMBERSHIP: Honorary membership was granted to four individuals for outstanding service in the field of conservation: Parvez Hassan (Pakistan), Commission of Environmental Law (CEL) Chair from 1990-1996 and former IUCN Legal Advisor; Sir Martin Holdgate (United Kingdom), Former IUCN Director General; George Rabb (United States), Species Survival Committee (SSC) Chair from 1990-1996; and Elizabeth Mann-Borgese, International Ocean Institute Chair since 1972.

COMMISSION AWARDS: Sir Peter Scott Award: This honor for SSC service was presented to Peter Jackson (United Kingdom); Marshall Murphee (Zimbabwe); and William Conway (United States).

Wolfgang Burhenne Award: This honor for CEL service, offered for the first time, was granted to the late Cyrille de Klemm (France). The Cyrille de Klemm Fund has been established in his memory.

Fred Packard Award: This award for WCPA service was presented to: the late Nancy Foster (United States); Marija Zupanicic-Vicar (Slovenia); and Adrian Phillips (United Kingdom).

In 2001, a Packard Award for Valour will be awarded to WCPA staff from the Democratic Republic of Congo. The WCPA proposes that the funding associated with the award be placed in a fund to support the families of those who have lost their lives.

ELECTION RESULTS: President: Yolanda Kakabadse. Treasurer: Claes de Dardel. Commission Chairs: Hein van Asperen, CEM; Denise Hamu, CEC; Nick Robinson, CEL; Kenton Miller, WCPA; and David Brackett, SSC. Regional Councillors for Africa: Juliana Chileshe (Zambia); Amadou Tidiane Ba (Senegal); and Zohir Sekkal (Algeria). Regional Councillors for Meso and South America: Snia Rigueira (Brazil); Gabriel Roberto Robles Valle (Guatemala); and Silvia Snchez Huamn (Peru). Regional Councillors for North America and the Caribbean: Lynne Holowesko (Bahamas); Huguette Labelle (Canada); and Dan Martin (USA). Regional Councillor for South and East Asia: Nobutoshi Akao (Japan); Antonio Claparols (Philippines); and Han Xingguo, (China). Regional Councillors for West Asia: Abdulaziz Abuzinada, (Saudi Arabia); Ali Akbar (Pakistan); and Talal F. Al- Azimi (Kuwait). Regional Councillors for Oceania: Christine Anne Milne (Australia); Wren Green (New Zealand); and Suliana Siwatibau (Fiji). Regional Councillors for East Europe, North and Central Asia: Anna Kalinowska (Poland); Ivan Voloscuk (Slovakia); and Alexy Vladimirovich Yablokov (Russian Federation). Regional Councillors for West Europe: Manfred Niekisch (Germany); Alistair Gammell (United Kingdom); and Maria Purificaci Canals (Spain).


DISCUSSION OF INDEPENDENT EXTERNAL REVIEW OF THE IUCN PROGRAMME: Richard Sandbrook, IUCN Regional Councillor for Western Europe, overviewed the outcomes of the independent external review (CGR/2/2000/3). He noted that the external review reflected a need for IUCN to move from a list of activities to developing a strategic shape and analyzed, inter alia: IUCN's distinctive competencies; knowledge management areas; instability of financing; integrating socioeconomic science and gender; monitoring and evaluation; and regional issues. He underscored IUCN's reorganization including a move to results-driven management based on the key areas of knowledge, empowerment, governance and operations. Sweden noted that at a recent donors' meeting, members had highlighted the need for an IUCN governance action plan. The Netherlands said more information on the Secretariat's organization is required.

IUCN PROGRAMME: Holdgate opened and moderated a discussion on the new programme, which, as delegates commented, places high priority on socioeconomic issues. Delegates expressed confusion over the Key Result Area (KRA) framework and whether this means that projects must fit exclusively into a single KRA. Holdgate clarified that many projects fit into two or more KRAs. Delegates also commended the structure of the new programme and its seven KRAs, the horizontal integration, synergies between KRAs, and socioeconomic connections. Governance within IUCN and the role of Councillors also dominated discussion.

MEMBERSHIP POLICY: Parvez Hassan, former IUCN Legal Advisor, outlined the draft IUCN membership policy (CGR/2/2000/14). He retraced the history of membership guidelines and invited members to take note of them, but said no formal adoption would take place. Nick Robinson, CEL, commended the Membership Committee for its hard work and called for members' feedback.


CONGRESS SITTING: The 23rd Congress will meet at 9:00 am at the Cultural Palace to discuss Commissions' mandates, the programme and budget, membership dues and membership policy. The 24th and 25th Congress sittings will meet at 2:00 pm and 6:00 pm respectively to adopt resolutions and recommendations.

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