Dec 7, 2022
Representatives from the United Nations’ (UN) 193 member countries are meeting in Canada this week. Their goal is to address threats to the world’s endangered plants and animals. The summit was delayed for three years due to COVID. It's the 15th annual meeting of the UN’s Conference of the Parties (COP) for the Convention on Biological Diversity.
COP15 is different from last month’s COP27 talks in Egypt, which focused on climate change. The COP15 biodiversity meetings will try to set goals to protect the world’s wildlife. Previous goals expired in 2020. So, right now, there are no plans in place to protect ecosystems around the world.
Over 1 million species are at risk. They're disappearing at a pace 1,000 times faster than natural extinction rates, according to Reuters. Already, a group of UN member nations have come up with 23 resolutions. They're aimed at saving plants and animals. The main idea has been called the “30-by-30” target. In the plan, countries want 30% of the world’s lands and oceans to be protected habitat by 2030.
“One might argue, and I guess I am, that our 1.5 degrees is protecting 30% of lands and oceans by 2030,” Canada’s climate minister said. He's referring to the limit on global warming proposed at COP27.
At least 110 countries have already committed to the “30-by-30” goal. That includes the US. China's delegate is leading the summit. He has yet to sign it, though. China has hinted that it believes a 25% conservation target could work.
COP15 lasts until December 17.
Photo from Reuters.
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