The Secretariat of the Ramsar Convention has been active in promoting wetlands issues at the Twelfth Session of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS COP12) currently being held in Manilla, Philippines.
The Ramsar Convention Deputy Secretary General, Mr Jonathan Barzdo participated in the Leader´s Breakfast on 22 October. This dialogue brought together Government Ministers, leaders from the private sector and senior representatives of international organizations to discuss and make commitments on the theme “Pollution and wildlife”. Their discussions focused on three major threats to migratory wildlife, namely marine debris, pollution by pesticides and lead. The lack of political will and leadership, the need to aim for zero waste, private sector options for waste management, and communication were identified as the main challenges to combat pollution. The outcomes will be sent to the Third Session of the UN Environmental Assembly (UNEA3) in December 2017.
Also at CMS CoP12, a High Level Panel took place on “How implementing CMS can contribute to the achievement of the SDGs”. The Panel of 30 members including Government Ministers, senior officials, executives of international organizations and representatives of global NGOs, and the private sector debated the links between sustainable development and the conservation of wildlife, with a special focus on migratory species and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Biodiversity-related conventions stressed that synergies and increased cooperation between multilateral environmental agreements were a high priority and that conventions continue working together in accordance with their respective mandates. The outcomes of the Panel will be incorporated into the Manila Declaration on Sustainable Development and Migratory Species, which will be considered for adoption at CMS CoP12. The draft declaration underscores the importance of wildlife to national and global economic activities, including those related to agriculture, forestry, fisheries, energy, tourism, transport, mining, medicine and trade.
The Secretariat of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands is collaborating with the Secretariat of the CMS to arrange a side event on synergies between the two Conventions under their Joint Work Plan.