COP 15 promotes synergies between the Rio conventions to support the mission of the UNCCD | News | SDG Knowledge Center
After two weeks of high-level meetings and negotiations, the 15th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) adopted decisions aimed at improving drought resilience , reduce land degradation and invest in land restoration efforts . Many delegates called for strengthening synergies between the three Rio Conventions and links with other UN agencies and environmental agreements.
the Earth Negotiations Bulletin (ENB) the meeting analysis notes that other areas of progress made during COP 15 include: the emphasis on the “vital role of women, youth, indigenous peoples and local communities in combating” desertification, land degradation and drought; a new partnership model for large-scale integrated landscape investment programs; and attention and resources for “greening initiatives of all shapes and sizes”.
Several new commitments were adopted at the COP. The Abidjan Call, launched by Heads of State and Government, reaffirms their continued commitment to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, in particular SDG 15.3 on achieving land degradation neutrality (NDT) by 2030. Leaders urge countries to put soil and land at the center of land-use policies that will establish healthy ecosystems and ensure global food security.
The Abidjan Declaration on Achieving Gender Equality for Successful Land Restoration, which emerged from the Gender Caucus, highlights the Convention’s pioneering role in advocating for women’s rights, including in relation to the land tenure.
The Declaration on Land, Life and Legacy includes the Abidjan Legacy Program – a five-year, $1.5 billion comprehensive approach to combat deforestation through forest restoration, which aims to restore 20% of Ivorian forest cover by the end of the decade.
In addition, UNCCD COP 15 adopted 38 decisions, including agreement to:
- Accelerate the restoration of one billion hectares of degraded land by 2030 through improved data collection, monitoring and reporting;
- Improve national policies and early warning, monitoring and assessment, in particular regarding sand and dust storms and drought;
- Improve efforts around capacity building, sharing of knowledge and lessons, and coordination of these efforts at the regional level;
- Establish an intergovernmental drought task force for 2022-2024 to support the shift from reactive to proactive drought management;
- Develop policies to reduce the impact and occurrence of sand and dust storms through early warning, risk assessment and reduction of human-caused causes;
- Ensure greater synergies between the three Rio Conventions, including complementarities in the implementation of these treaties through nature-based solutions and the setting of targets at the national level; and
- Strengthen the participation of civil society organizations (CSOs) and young people in the work and meetings of the UNCCD.
COP 15 convened in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, from 9-20 May 2022. The UNCCD’s flagship publication, Global Land Outlook, informed discussions on land restoration. [ENB Summary Report of UNCCD COP 15]