Biodiv Sci ›› 2019, Vol. 27 ›› Issue (3): 339-346.DOI: 10.17520/biods.2018240

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Development of Convention on Biological Diversity’s Global Platform for Business & Biodiversity: Policy suggestion for China

Zhao Yang1,Wen Yuanyuan1,2,*()   

  1. 1 Foreign Economic Corporation Office, Ministry of Ecology and Environment of People’s Republic of China, Beijing 100035;
    2 School of Environment, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875
  • Received:2018-09-06 Accepted:2018-10-18 Online:2019-03-20 Published:2019-03-15
  • Contact: Wen Yuanyuan

Abstract:

The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is the most important international convention committed to the protection of biodiversity. It is also the most significant platform for China to participate and lead in the construction of a global ecological civilization. As an important entity for enterprises engaging in biodiversity conservation, the CBD has been strengthening efforts to build a consistent international system over the last two decades. The international system consists of two main pillars: (1) Global Partnership on Business and Biodiversity (GPBB mechanism), and (2) Global Platform for Business & Biodiversity (GPBB platform). The GPBB mechanism provides the organization and financial arrangement, while the GPBB platform mainly provides technical and intellectual support. These two pillars complement and provide synergies to one other. By looking into the formation background, development process, current situation and future trends of the GPBB platform, this paper systematically summarizes various resources that have been intentionally made available by the GPBB platform gradually over a long period of time. It also puts forward relevant policy recommendations for China in how to better participate in, contribute to and benefit from the CBD. Since COP-3 in 1996, related concepts, methodologies, and mechanisms have been continuously built up and made publicly available through an online database of the current GPBB platform through the official website of the Convention. These resources can be used by governments and enterprises of all countries, and China should increase its application of the resources available. Based on our research, we came to the following conclusions: (1) Willingness of enterprises to participate in biodiversity conservation and the demand for the GPBB platforms is growing; (2) CBD’s requirements for enterprise participation are explicit; (3) Roadmap on how to promote business engagement in biodiversity protection is straightforward; (4) GPBB mechanism allowing national governments to become members has already been established; and (5) GPBB platform as resource bank has been greatly substantiated. Looking forward to the future, the development of GPBB platforms is expected to continue maintaining the following three momentums: (1) GPBB platform will be continuously improved; (2) The impact will be further strengthened; and (3) More significant sectors will be highlighted. The GPBB platform has provided opportunities for enterprises to implement a range of CBD projects and promoted up-to-date information dissemination on latest research findings, methodology, technical tools, voluntary standards, guidelines, briefings and business best practices. It has also supported inputs and contributions from GPBB members of national governments, corporations, NGOs, academic researchers and other institutional stakeholders. China formally joined the GPBB in 2015 and carried out an in-depth study on GPBB and membership countries. A national initiative of China Business & Biodiversity Partnership (CBBP) is in progress, however in general, there is still much work to do. The paper makes the following suggestions: (1) China should introduce new draft resolutions to further strengthen the international system in COP-15 based on improved policy research; (2) China should be active in and gradually lead the GPBB development; (3) Capacity building in human resources is needed to make the CBBP stand out in the GPBB; and (4) Draw on the GPBB platform to better benefit from and contribute to it.

Key words: biodiversity conservation, international experience, global partnership, Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), business participation