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IUCN World Conservation Congress: New Sustainable Action

French Prime Minister Macron speaking at IUCN Congress opening
Written by Linda S. Hohnholz

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) wrapped up its quadrennial World Conservation Congress this week – a year later than originally intended due to the COVID-19 crisis.

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  1. It was a full and productive agenda for the 9-day International Union for the Conservation of Nature conference held in Marseille, France.
  2. There were 4 summits that took place during this time, aiming to inspire and invigorate.
  3. The 4 summits presented were: Indigenous Peoples’ Summit, the Global Youth Summit, the CEO Summit, and the Local Action Summit.

Over the course of the 9-day conference, IUCN members voted on 39 Motions, elected new leadership, and approved the next IUCN program for 2021-2024, which will be called Nature 2030: Union in Action. During that time, too, 4 separate summits took place – the Indigenous Peoples’ Summit, the Global Youth Summit, the CEO Summit, and the Local Action Summit, all aiming to inspire and invigorate the various groups IUCN works with.

EcoGo came to the conference supporting 3 motions – Motion 003 – Establishing a Climate Change Commission (or Establishing a Global IUCN Climate Crisis Action Platform) from the Hawai’i Conservation Alliance Foundation and Our Drowning Voices; Motion 101 – Setting area-based conservation targets based on evidence of what nature and people need to thrive, sponsored by The WILD Foundation and Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative; and Motion 130 – Strengthening sustainable tourism’s role in biodiversity conservation and community resilience, proposed by WCPA’s (a commission within IUCN) Tourism and Protected Areas Specialist Group. Both passed, as can be seen by the vote results.

Pamela at Aix en Provence

Motion 130 covers creating Sustainable Tourism as a topic and integrating nature-based tourism events and activities into future Congresses and IUCN conferences, calls for the creation of an inter-commission working group focused on sustainable tourism’s role in biodiversity conservation and community resilience, and urges other commissions to include sustainable tourism in their future efforts. WCPA and all co-sponsors were congratulated for this.

Motion 101 was a long time in the making, and has passed thanks to the tireless efforts of Vance Martin and his team. As climate change drives the absolute necessity for action, these are the sort of guidelines needed to protect nature – key to survival.

Jehoshua Shapiro, Jessica Hughes, and Pamela Lanier at the CEC dinner

Motion 003 was highly debated. The proposers wanted a Climate Change Commission created, but in revision by the IUCN review body, language was changed to have a task force, rather than a commission created. Read “Our Drowning Voices” response to that change here. That language changed under further revision to “Establishing a Global IUCN Climate Crisis Action Platform” or creating a Commission. The motion passed in the 8th and final debate and vote of the conference, though what form it will take is not yet known.

IUCN also agreed upon a new manifesto for the next four-year period with a focus on COVID-19 recovery and halting biodiversity loss.

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About the author

Linda S. Hohnholz

Linda Hohnholz has been the editor in chief for eTurboNews for many years.
She loves to write and pays attention to details.
She is also in charge of all premium content and press releases.

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