The Irish Wildlife Trust (IWT) will be in Montreal, Canada from Wednesday (7/12) to attend the COP15 meeting, hailed as the biggest meeting for biodiversity in over a decade. COP15 is held under the Convention on Biological Diversity, agreed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1992 and to which Ireland is a signatory. The COP comes at a time of unprecedented biodiversity loss across the globe which threatens to end human civilisation as we know it.
The COP will attempt to agree a ‘Global Biodiversity Framework’ to stabilise and restore natural ecosystems along the lines of the Paris Agreement on climate, agreed in 2015.
IWT campaign officer, Pádraic Fogarty, who will be representing the organisation as an observer in Montreal, says “It’s really important that we recognise the threat that is posed by biodiversity collapse as distinct from the climate crisis. While there are important interactions between the two issues we must recognise the different drivers – specifically habitat loss, over exploitation, pollution and alien invasive species, all of which are significant problems in Ireland as well as globally. There is a tendency to think that climate change is driving the extinction of species in Ireland but this is not the case. Our over-exploitative use of land, water and sea is the cause. If we are to get a handle on this issue it’s vital that these distinctions are fully recognised.”
The IWT will be working in Montreal to highlight the biodiversity crisis and how it relates to Ireland. We will be hoping for a strong agreement, backed by science and with a high level of ambition.
Ireland needs to be a part of this solution and targets that are agreed must be applied to Ireland. We believe that biodiversity recovery in Ireland is not only vitally important for our future but is a hugely positive endeavour that can improve livelihoods. To that end, we need to ensure that solutions are equitable and recognise the central role that people play in the wider ecosystem.
CONTACT: Padraic Fogarty IWT Campaigns Officer firstname.lastname@example.org