Political Opportunities and Challenges for Securing High Ambition in the Post-2020 global biodiversity framework

Deepening collective understanding of the key political dynamics that are underpinning the Post-2020 negotiations
The postponement of the IUCN World Conservation Congress and along with it, the Post-2020 Pavilion, has created an opportunity for the Pavilion Partnership to organise two series of Virtual Biodiversity Dialogues, with the first one convened  between 17 June and 21 July 2020, and the second one to be convened in September-October 2020.  The Virtual Biodiversity Dialogues Series will convene leading biodiversity and development experts from around the world to deepen collective thinking and to generate new insights and powerful messages for elevating ambition in the ongoing Post-2020 global biodiversity framework negotiations. The Virtual Biodiversity Dialogues Series will also lay the groundwork for developing the substantive events that they will convene at the Congress in 2021.

On June 30th, the Post-2020 Pavilion hosted a public virtual event on “Political Opportunities and Challenges for Securing High Ambition in the Post-2020 global biodiversity framework”.

The objective of this session was to deepen collective understanding of the the key political dynamics that are underpinning the Post-2020 negotiations, and potentially undermining ambition levels. These dynamics pertain to the push for a stronger GBF that is sufficiently ambitious, science-based, rigorously implemented and duly synergized with other global processes. The dynamics also relate to the challenge of elevating the profile of nature throughout the UN system to ensure that nature recovery and restoration become mainstreamed in other policy spheres.

The Post-2020 Pavilion will be convened during the IUCN World Conservation Congress in Marseille, France from 3-11 September 2021. The Post-2020 Pavilion is a collaborative effort by an international partnership of many of the world’s largest environment and development NGOs, foundations, as well as several UN organisations and representatives of youth, Indigenous Peoples, Cities and Subnational governments and the business sector. The partners are united in their collective drive for transformative change to ensure that the GBF is sufficiently ambitious, scientifically grounded and mission-aligned.

Keynote speakers:

  • CBD Secretariat Marco Lambertini, Director General — WWF International
  • Johan Rockstrom, Director — Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research


  • Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, Ex-Executive Director — CBD Secretariat
  • Ruth Davis Deputy-Director — Global Conservation, RSPB
  • Li Shuo, Senior Climate and Energy Policy Officer — Greenpeace East Asia
  • Christian Schwarzer Co-Founder — Global Youth Biodiversity Network
  • Paul Matiku CEO — Nature Kenya
  • Martin Lok Deputy Director — Capitals Coalition


  • Noëlle Kümpel Head of Policy — BirdLife International
  • Johannah Bernstein Coordinator — Post-2020 Pavilion

The impacts of COVID-19 was also examined in terms of the correlations between nature loss and global pandemics and the transformative change needed to Healthy Planet and Healthy People.

This session was an important context setter for all of the Virtual Biodiversity Dialogues. In addition to the larger political dynamics, this session explored the areas of disagreement, especially as regards the fundamental goals, targets, drivers of loss, financing and most importantly the opportunity to chart a new course to reverse nature loss and ensure its full recovery. This session helped to frame the overarching messages that were be developed in the other sessions.

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