How can global conventions for biodiversity and ecosystem services guide local conservation actions?

Abstract : With global science-policy conventions for biodiversity and ecosystem services in place, much effort goes into monitoring and reporting on the progress toward policy targets. As conservation actions happen locally, can such global monitoring and reporting efforts effectively guide conservation. actions at subnational level? In this paper we explore three different perspectives: policy reporting for policy implementation; scientific knowledge for empowerment and actions; and from past trends to influencing the future. Using these three perspectives, we identify ways forward for both decision makers and scientists on how to engage, inform and empower a larger diversity of actors who make decisions on the future of biodiversity and ecosystem services at multiple scales Without doubt, scientific understanding of why and where biodiversity and ecological resilience are degrading is advancing [1",2]. In addition, there is enormous investment and engagement by both decision makers and scientists to maintain and raise the environmental stakes on international policy agendas in the face of worldwide economic, social and political challenges. Global biodiversity targets as set by the signatories to the Convention on Biological Diversity in 2010 (the Aichi targets), the 2013 European Union strategy on adaptation to climate change, and the Sustainable Development Goals, require short to medium term action in translating such targets to local conservation actions [e.g. 3], for instance at the level of protected areas, watersheds or a village [4]. With the first thematic, regional and global assessment reports of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) being published [5,6] or steadily advancing, it is timely to reflect on how the substantial scientific and political investments in monitoring and reporting on progress toward global biodiversity and ecosystem service targets can be used effectively for conservation actions. Taking the perspective of societal actors faced with subnational or site based conservation challenges, we explore the possible guidance that these global initiatives may provide. As the ultimate objective is to decrease biodiversity degradation [7], frequent back casting of the extent of biodiversity and ecosystem services loss for reporting does not necessarily provide guidance on what to do differently to curb downward trends in the future [8'']. A different approach is therefore required to obtain and use information from global conventions to enhance the effectiveness of so cietal actors in addressing local biodiversity degradation. A lack of information is only one of many factors mentioned when listing impediments to the impact of local conservation actions. Empowerment of local actors, multi-actor mobilization and addressing the impaired effectiveness of governance are measures that have been suggested as steps toward curbing current biodiversity trends [9,10'',11–13], steps which cannot be taken by decision makers, scientists or NGOs in isolation or bilaterally. In this paper we reflect on: policy reporting for policy implementation; scientific knowledge for empowerment and actions; and from past trends to influencing the future. From these three perspectives, we identify ways forward for both decision makers and scientists on how to engage with, inform and empower a larger diversity of actors that take decisions on the future of biodiversity and ecosystem services at local scales.
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Ilse Geijzendorffer, Astrid van Teeffelen, Hilary Allison, Daniela Braun, Katherine Horgan, et al.. How can global conventions for biodiversity and ecosystem services guide local conservation actions?. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, Elsevier, 2017, 29, pp.145 - 150. ⟨10.1016/j.cosust.2017.12.011⟩. ⟨hal-01783574⟩

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