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Embassy of Iceland in Beijing

UN Biodiversity Conference and COP15 in Kunming, China

At COP15, held this week in Kunming, China, the Minister for Environment and Natural Resources, Mr. Guðmundur Ingi Guðbrandsson, declared in an address to the convention that Iceland would support the content of the Kunming Declaration. The Minister participated online, while H.E. Thorir Ibsen, Ambassador of Iceland to China, participated in person at the UN Biodiversity Conference and COP15.  

In his address, the Minister noted the importance of cross boarder cooperation, but also the cooperation of different sectors of government, civil society, and business to incentivise action and implement agreements. He likewise noted that Iceland is currently working on a new policy and plan concerning the sustainable protection of biodiversity and that the government intends to finalize the policy work before the next session of the UN Biodiversity Conference next spring. The Minister made a point that Iceland is on way to fulfil the draft´s goals of nearly 30% protected area coverage, while admitting more would be needed in the case of oceanic areas. Finally, he mentioned that the Icelandic government had accepted the Bonn-challenge, where Iceland intends to triple its Birch-tree coverage before 2030, while also emphasising the protection and recovery of ecosystems and increasing research into carbon dioxide in soil, for the promotion of sustainable land use.  

At the end of the session the Minister spoke on behalf of the JUSCANZ country group. He thanked the Chinese organizers and emphasised that the work ahead was important, not only for us but also for the next generations.

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