Global Environment & Society Academy

International Biodiversity & Climate Panel

The International Biodiversity and Climate Panel with Dr. Braulio Dias (Executive Secretary of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity) and Julia Marton-Lefevre (former Director General of IUCN) took place on 25 November in the Old College.


This successful event organised by the Edinburgh Marine Network brought together more than 100 researchers and practitioners based in Edinburgh and was hosted by Global Environmental & Society Academy, the Edinburgh Law School and the School of Geosciences.

Dr. Dias discussed the challenges and the evolving policy agenda related to biodiversity, with a special focus on marine biodiversity. He highlighted the work of the Convention in addressing the causes of biodiversity loss and protecting biodiversity in light of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, and the interface between these and other policy and legal instruments, and law-making processes, including the Sustainable Development Goals, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and the UN General Assembly deliberations on international instrument for marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ).

He concluded by stressing that even though progress has been made, efforts must be scaled up to achieve biodiversity targets, reduce pressures on and restore biodiversity. Dr. Dias also underscored that biodiversity is a central pillar of sustainable development and must be supported, in this regard, and that global goals for biodiversity, sustainable development and climate change must be addressed synergistically.

Julia MartonLefevre offered inspiring comments on Braulio Dias’ address, and challenged the audience to think about transformative ways to achieve a truly sustainable present and future in this planet.