One Nordic voice for the climate-biodiversity nexus
On International Biodiversity Day, NDF’s role as part of the solution to biodiversity challenges when building back better is highlighted
Current negative trends on biodiversity and ecosystems will undermine progress towards several Sustainable Development Goals. The international community should be active in seeking out solutions that address both climate change and environmental degradation at the same time. The linkages between climate change, environmental degradation and international development include complicated issues that need carefully-planned global approaches and solutions. In addition to economic and social co-benefits, climate change adaptation and mitigation initiatives often have environmental co-benefits.
The impact of climate change on the environment, including biodiversity, is of particularly high importance in NDF’s role as a Nordic institution. NDF’s Strategy 2025 provides a clear strategic direction towards actions supporting biodiversity. On 22 May, International Biodiversity Day, we are proud to highlight our activities that treat biodiversity as an important foundation to build back better.
The Nordic Council of Ministers for the Environment and Climate gathered on 12 May 2021 to look ahead to this year’s major summits on biodiversity and climate. The main message emerging from the meeting was that - at a time of rising global temperatures - the work of conserving and restoring marine ecosystems is more important than ever. Furthermore, the Nordic ministers adopted the Nordic Ministerial Declaration on Biodiversity, Oceans and Climate. The declaration highlights the need for an integrated ecosystem-based approach to management of oceans which recognises that protecting nature and biodiversity, including the blue carbon of the oceans, is also a form of climate action. Here, global financial systems have a crucial role to play in steering investments in a direction that has a positive impact on biodiversity.
Already today, NDF supports biodiversity conservation and sustainable use of natural resources through several projects. In Honduras, NDF supports indigenous fishing communities to improve their artisanal fisheries while preserving the mangrove ecosystem on which their economy depends. In Rwanda, NDF supports rehabilitation of the urban wetland system in Kigali including re-establishing large wetland habitat areas, which will provide essential refugia for biodiversity. In Latin America, there is support to conservation and rehabilitation of cloud forest areas through an innovative financing mechanism. Along the West African coastline, NDF supports regional efforts for coordination and conservation of key mangrove areas that provide protection against coastal erosion and habitat for fish, birds and mammals. In Uganda, NDF supports climate-smart agriculture with tree planting and improved forest coverage in upstream watersheds.
In the coming months, NDF will seek out financing opportunities that support biodiversity as a crucial part of the nexus between climate and development.