The Mediterranean presence at COP14 of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Egypt

The Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity is holding its fourteenth meeting (CBD COP 14) in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, from 17 to 29 November 2018. The conference convenes on the theme “Investing in biodiversity for people and planet”. Delegates from the Convention’s 196 Parties as well as representatives from civil society, the private sector, sub-national governments, indigenous peoples, and local communities and youth are participating in the Conference in order to step up efforts to halt the degradation of biodiversity and protect the ecosystems that ensure the livelihoods of billions of people around the world.



Opening of the plenary session at the CBD COP14. Photo by IISD/ENB | Franz Dejon


If we do not act we soon may reach tipping points that may cause irreversible destruction to nature and ultimately to humankind” – Dr. Cristiana Paşca Palmer, Executive Secretary of the CBD, emphasized the critical urgency for the international community to work together to preserve global biodiversity now.

More information

About the Convention on Biological Diversity
About the CBD COP14 in Egypt
The side-events program HERE.
The press release of the Conference
Sharm El-Sheikh Declaration: Investing in Biodiversity for People and Planet


The following are some of the side events organized at the CBD COP14 that are of interest to the Mediterranean region.


The ‘Nexus’ approach: a tool for safeguarding biodiversity

Organizers: Mediterranean Information Office | Arab Network for Environment & Development (RAED)
Sunday, 18 November 2018 at 13:15, in Nile Valley-African Group Room

Biodiversity is one of the frequent victims of unsustainable water and agricultural policies and practices that can add stress or even severely harm aquatic and other natural ecosystems.

The side event will explain the Nexus approach Water-Energy-Food-Ecosystems and will substantiate the links between these sectors. The optimal coordination options among the ‘Nexus’ sectors will be explored at local, country, transboundary and regional (e.g., Mediterranean) levels.

More information:


Managing hunting and trapping of migratory birds in Egypt through research, policy and outreach

Organizers: EEAA | NCE
Sunday, 18 November 2018 at 18:15

The event will provide a detailed update on the status of migratory birds being caught along Egypt’s Mediterranean Coast for food and/or sustenance. Nature Conservation Egypt (NCE) will present its Responsible Hunting Programme’s activities along Egypt’s Mediterranean Coast, in an attempt to understand why migratory birds are still being hunted/trapped/taken, and what is being done to better manage this process.

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Connected solutions for a connected world: mainstreaming biodiversity conservation across conventions, landscapes and sectors through migratory flyways

Organizers: CMS | Birdlife | Egypt
Sunday, 18 November 2018 at 18:15

Mainstreaming biodiversity across multiple conventions, countries, sectors, stakeholders and scales is needed to implement several Aichi Targets and will also be a key component of a more ambitious and effective post-2020 global biodiversity framework, which must place nature at the centre of both government and corporate decision-making as well as individual action. In an increasingly globalised world, migratory birds connect people, ecosystems, and nations and are critical indicators of the state of the environment and global life support systems. Their conservation depends on safeguarding the large-scale connectivity of habitats and ecological processes along their migration routes, or flyways. Flyway conservation therefore epitomises the sort of global cooperation we urgently need to achieve biodiversity, climate, and sustainable development goals.

This side event will present a series of case studies to demonstrate the mainstreaming of biodiversity at various scales via flyway conservation.

More information:


Networks of managers of Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) to accelerate progress towards Aïchi target 11

Organizers: MedPAN | RAMPAO | NAMPAN | the French biodiversity Agency (AFB) | Fundación Biodiversidad
Wednesday, 21 November 2018 at 18:15

The side event aims to show the value and the role of networks of MPA managers at different levels (regional, sub-regional, national, or thematic) to accelerate the progress towards the qualitative aspects of Aïchi target 11, mainly the effective management of MPAs. It highlights the initiative of a common strategy among different regional and national networks at transatlantic level and the potential to enlarge this approach worldwide.

More information here:


Efforts made under the Barcelona Convention towards the conservation of marine and coastal biodiversity in the Mediterranean coast of Egypt

Organiers: UN Environment/MAP, SPA/RAC
Wednesday, 21 November 2018 at 18:15, in M3 – IGOs Room

The side event will showcase activities undertaken so far concerning specifically:

  • The elaboration of the national action plan for the conservation of marine mammals in the Egyptian Mediterranean Sea;
  • The elaboration of the national action plan for the conservation of marine turtles;
  • The elaboration of the national action plan on non-indigenous species;
  • The management of marine protected areas;
  • The implementation of the Ecosystem Approach (EcAp) for the biodiversity component, particularly its Integrated Monitoring and Assessment Programme (IMAP).

More information:


The Egyptian Lifeline Solutions Initiative, 2018-2022: “Nature-based solutions for biodiversity health and ecosystem vitality that reduce land and marine degradation and increase resilience to climate change for the people of Egypt and for the world”.

Organizers: IUCN-ROWA
Thursday, 22 November 2018 at 13:15, at Nile Valley-African Group Room


Generating marine data and services to support decision-making in Northern Africa and the Mediterranean

Organizers: UNEP-WCMC | SPA/RAC | RAED | Deltares
Thursday, 22 November 2018 at 13:15, at Citadel -CEE Room

This consultative event will showcase activities in North African and eastern Mediterranean countries as well as partnerships across the region that are being facilitated by the ODYSSEA project. This includes new observatories for in situ monitoring, which will strengthen access to data and information that is needed by governmental organisations and businesses for informed decision-making in the region.

Drawing upon existing oceanographic data and new in situ monitoring observatories, the project seeks to design tailored, user-driven products and services that can inform sustainable management of, and ‘blue growth’ within, the Mediterranean Sea, while preserving biodiversity and ecosystem health. A key objective of the project is to enhance capacity in North African countries in close collaboration with governmental, non-governmental and business focal points, focusing on increasing access to and use of required data and services.

More information:


The role of civil society in the protection of marine and coastal ecosystems

Organizers: CMEPE Morocco | RAED
Thursday, 22 November 2018 at 18:15, at Citadel -CEE Room

This side event will elaborate on the roles of civil society in the protection of marine and coastal ecosystems, and demonstrate some experiences and perspectives in this regard from the Arab region. Case studies will cover RAED NGO members’ implementation of the integrated management of the coastal-marine resources and ecosystems in Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, and Morocco.

More information:


Marine Mammals Protected Areas (MMPAs) acting for Aichi Target 11

Organizer: the French biodiversity Agency (AFB)
Sunday, 25 November 2018 at 18:15, at Sinai-Multi-Purpose Room

The side event aims to share information regarding how Marine Mammal Protected Areas (MMPAs) and networks of MMPAs can contribute towards achieving Aichi Target 11. A set of tools shared at the national, regional, and international levels will be presented by different actors.

More information:


CONSERVATION: case studies from Egypt’s National Parks- Endangered Species conservation and a model for an Emergency Action Plan for In Situ Conservation: Medemia Argun in Egypt

Organizers: Wadi El GemalOrg | Eg-NDF
Monday, 26 November 2018 at 18:15, at Nile Valley-African Group Room

The side event aims to provide examples of some endangered species and small conservation projects in Egypt’s national parks which are known to lead by doing. The side event will cover the work of the Egyptian park rangers as well as conservation efforts and species that need urgent conservation actions.

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Towards the implementation of the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (NBSAP) in the Arab countries

Organizers: IUCN | Egypt | UNDP
Monday, 26 November 2018 at 18:15, at Red Sea- GRULAC Room

This side event will discuss the progress towards the implementation of each country’s National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (NBSAP), the principal instrument for implementing the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) at the national level. Initiatives on biodiversity conservation in the Arab region will be presented to showcase progress in the mainstreaming of biodiversity and in implementing the Aichi targets at the national level. The meeting will also address synergies between biodiversity-related conventions and provide a platform to discuss joint technical coordination among Arab countries in the region for effective participation in the COP14 and COP15 of the CBD.

More information:


LAKES ECOSYSTEMS: pollution effects on fish: the case of Qaroun Lake

Organizer: SEFD org shakshouk
Monday, 26 November 2018 at 18:15, at Citadel -CEE Room

The side event will present a local case study presentation on the magnitude of pollution effects in lakes and will open the floor for recommendations. The side event will concentrate on Qaroun Lake, one of the largest natural lakes in Egypt and the world.

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Ecosystem-based approaches to managing transboundary and cumulative impacts in the Mediterranean Sea, with a special focus on marine litter and related impacts on biodiversity

Organizers: UfMS | ETC-UMA
Tuesday, 27 November 2018 at 13:15, in Aswan-JUSCANZ Room

The side event will focus on ecosystem-based approaches to managing transboundary and cumulative impacts in the Mediterranean Sea, with three objectives:

  1. Present the major types of transboundary impacts, including marine pollution and climate change;
  2. Highlight the additional benefits of Ecosystem based management (EBM) to address transboundary impacts more effectively compared to other tools (MPAs, etc.) supporting regional strategies and processes (MSP, Integrated coastal zone management (ICZM), etc.);
  3. Build further cooperation on utilizing ecologically coherent management units that represent functional boundaries of ecosystems, and present potential tools and ongoing processes to more effectively address such transboundary impacts on biodiversity.

Consult the agenda of the side-event here.


Climate change impacts on Egyptian protected areas and their local communities

Organizers: RAED | ESDF
Wednesday, 28 November 2018 at 13:15, at Nile Valley -African Group Room

The side event will discuss the impacts of climate change on biodiversity and use the Egyptian Protected Areas, mainly the northern ones, as a demonstration.

In exploring the relationship between man and biosphere, the side event will highlight the importance of Community-based Climate Change Adaptation (CCA), and Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) for protecting the community and its biodiversity. The side event will also present a demonstration case study by RAED in Bangar El Sokkar villages (northern Egypt) in such climate change adaptation measures as drought risk management and preserving agricultural as well as other types of biodiversity, thus preserving livelihoods.

More information:


Examples of mainstreaming biodiversity within economic sectors in Tunisia: cases of two projects on ecotourism and oases ecosystems, supported by The World Bank and Global Environment Facility (GEF)

Organizer: Tunisian Government
Thursday, 29 November 2018 at 13:15, in Luxor-Asia and the Pacific Room

The side event will present the results of two projects whose achievements deserve to be recognised as examples in mainstreaming the conservation of biodiversity in various sectors of the economy as well as success stories in relation to several themes covered by CBD COP14.

One of the two projects aims at promoting the conservation and sustainable use of oasis ecosystems through support to local communities, in particular to maintaining traditional sustainable agriculture practices. The other project is promoting the ecotourism in protected areas through income generating activities that are in line with the conservation objectives of the protected areas and their respective management plans.

More information: