On the side-lines of the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) COP15, ICRI convened the coral community, demonstrating to parties to the CBD that we are here, united and ready to support them in the implementation of the UN Biodiversity CBD Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.
With a strong representation from Pacific countries, representing about 1/3 of the world’s coral reefs, we welcomed remarks from Assistant Secretary Monica Medina (U.S. Department of State), H.E. Minister of State for Environment Climate Change & Technology Abdulla Naseer, Maldives, H.E Minister of Environment, Conservation and Climate Change Simo Kilepa, Papua New Guinea, Sebastian Unger (Special Envoy for the Ocean, Germany), Sefanaia Nawadra (Director General, Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP)), with closing remarks from Stephen de Boer (Assistant Deputy Minister of International Affairs at Environment & Climate Change, Canada). Remarks from the Global Environment Facility and Bloomberg Philanthropies were also provided.
The fruitful and productive evening welcomed over 100 participants and was concluded with the Kumulipo – the Hawaiian creation chant – from Solomon Kaho’ohalahala, recognising the indigenous connection between coral reefs and Hawaii.
Thank you to all that attended, and to G20 CORDAP (Coral Research & Development Accelerator Platform), the Principality of Monaco, Wildlife Conservation Society, Paul G. Allen Family Foundation, Global Fund for Coral Reefs, and UN Environment Programme for their support.
The event was opened by a video narrated by UN Environment Programme Goodwill Ambassador Ellie Goulding on the importance of ICRI’s 3 Asks #ForCoral ahead of the CBD COP15.