Post-2020 global biodiversity framework - Edinburgh Process: report

This report details the outcomes of the Edinburgh Process for subnational and local governments and Edinburgh Declaration relating to the post-2020 biodiversity framework.

Key outcomes

Goals, Targets and Monitoring Framework

16. The Edinburgh Process consultation asked participants about their views on the 2030 Mission, Goals and Targets, and the monitoring framework – as set out in the first version of the Zero Draft document. The key points are summarised below with more detail on individual goals and targets provided in Annex 1:

  • The role of subnational and local governments needs to be clearly recognised within all relevant sections of the framework to ensure that it is politically relevant, vertically integrated and governments at all levels feel responsibility for its implementation.
  • Subnational and local governments are well placed to address mainstreaming, in line with the long-term strategic approach, due their closer links to stakeholders, including businesses, NGOs and local communities and indigenous peoples.
  • It is critical to capture the collective actions of subnational governments, cities and local authorities in measuring the overall implementation of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework.
  • Therefore the monitoring framework should be explicit in setting out which monitoring elements should be undertaken at which level of governance, so that the appropriate resources can be put in place.
  • The ambition of the subnational governments can act as a lever for the ambition of state parties. It is therefore important to include all levels of governments (including sub-national and local) and stakeholders (civil society and private sector) in order to engage with the whole of society.

Engagement across levels of government

17. On engagement across all levels of government the key points raised during the consultation are set out below, with more detailed comments are available in Annex 1:

  • Whilst most respondents were engaged with the development of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework, only 14% are engaging through their National Focal Point (NFP).
  • Better vertical harmonisation and co-operation are needed to improve engagement of a majority of NFP with their subnational and local counterparts.
  • During the development of National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs) only 34% of respondents reported engagement with their NFP despite 88% stating they would like to actively contribute); and only 25% had actively engaged with their NFP around national reporting despite 91% willing to do so.
  • Many NBSAPs and national reports do not take into account the requirements, actions and resources of subnational and local authorities.
  • Monitoring activities at subnational levels are critical components of national contributions and this should be recognised within the post-2020 global biodiversity framework.


18. This consultation provided a reminder that whilst parties to the Convention are responsible for undertaking all of the processes that enable implementation of the global framework, many different sub-national stakeholders and actors deliver the actions - therefore national policies and strategies are enacted by subnational, cities and local authorities as essential partners in implementing the framework. Indeed, across Europe 70% of biodiversity legislation is enacted at the subnational and local level and some Edinburgh Process respondents noted that they have a devolved responsibility for implementing many elements of the framework.

19. The key issues that were raised by respondents are shown below, with more detail in Annex 1:

  • 60% of respondents considered that the issues set out in sections E-H of the Zero Draft framework document would provide a sufficient framework for ensuring subnational contributions however the role of SNLG in implementing the framework should be clearly set out.
  • SNLG are an integral part of government, therefore the mission, goals and targets apply equally to them as they do to state parties.
  • Across the issues of capacity building, knowledge and information sharing and technical co-operation, technology transfer and innovation SNLG play a critical role in engaging effectively with a wide range of stakeholders, as well as their national counterpart. This engagement aligns with the outreach, awareness and uptake aspect of the framework.
  • Vertical integration and harmonisation across all levels of governance - global, national and subnational/local - is critical in delivering a coherent implementation of the framework.
  • Harmonisation across private and public sectors is critical in ensuring finance mechanisms are in place – leveraging from bottom up as well as top down, and recognising that that often bottom-up, business-led nature based solutions are most effective in delivering biodiversity benefits across local level landscapes.
  • NBS provide opportunities to address multiple challenges, simultaneously. Alignment of cross-convention issues is most effectively achieved at the level of subnational governments, cities and local authorities
  • SNLG should be recognised across the framework as critical to its delivery. Decentralisation of biodiversity issues is essential to create the supportive conditions (people and funding) needed for specific local and regional ecosystems and to ensure that local projects are undertaken as needed with effective data collection and reporting platforms in place.
  • There was a call for a definitive implementation plan and a formal mandate for participation and action by subnational and local authorities, with the framework setting out the clear responsibilities and tasks of subnational and local governments.

It is noted that many of the aspects above have been addressed in the updated zero draft document, however specific reference to SNLG remains limited to the Enabling Conditions section of the framework, with references to 'government at all levels'; 'all actors'; and 'non-State actors' in other sections. This does not fully recognise the specific role that SNLG has to play across all areas of implementing the framework.



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