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High Level Opening Session

Day 1 - 24 November

GGSD2020 green leafs

14:00 - 15:00 CET

Trends in natural capital erosion can profoundly affect the resilience of our societies, with biodiversity loss among the top global risks. As the international community strives to agree on the post-2020 global biodiversity framework under the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) at COP15, and prepare for UN Framework Convention on Climate Change at COP26, the 2020 OECD Green Growth and Sustainable Development Forum will focus on “Securing natural capital: Resilience, risk management and Covid-19”.

The Forum will explore the challenges for the agriculture and fisheries sectors in achieving  the SDGs, the progress towards securing life on land (SDG 14) and under water (SDG 15), how to better mobilise finance for biodiversity and how nature-based solutions can help to improve the resilience of our societies against the impact of climate change.  All these will be put in the context of how to orchestrate a “green recovery” from this crisis.

Securing natural capital on land

Day 1 - 24 November

GGSD2020 intense agriculture

15:00 - 16:00 CET

A transformative change in land use is needed to end hunger (SDG 2), ensure clean water for all (SDG 6), mitigate greenhouse gas emissions (SDG 13), and protect life on land (SDG 15).  Furthermore, the homogeneity of farmed crop and animal varieties increases the vulnerability of our food systems to shocks, such as new pathogens and invasive species imported through international trade.  Human encroachment into natural habitats and the competition between different land uses are expected to increase due to world population growth, urbanisation and changing consumption and dietary patterns.  This session will discuss the policies, business practices and political economy challenges to ensure a more sustainable use of natural capital on land. How can land use planning, payment for ecosystem services, sustainable agriculture, forestry and other policy measures help managing the synergies and trade-offs among competing land uses? The sudden outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic also created additional stresses on the global food system, requiring interventions by policymakers to guarantee the continued functioning of supply chains and to ensure access to food for vulnerable consumers. What are the distributional implications of such policies? The session will also explore the role of new technologies in addressing these long-standing challenges.

Securing ocean-based natural capital

Day 2 - 25 November

GGSD2020 Fish farm aerial

14:00 - 15:00 CET

The ocean economy spans multiple sectors – including fishing, aquaculture, tourism, transport and extractive sector – and is valued at USD 1.5 trillion. Yet marine and coastal ecosystems also provide invaluable – and in most cases ignored – services, such as climate regulation, pollution control, storm protection, shoreline stabilisation, and habitats for species – all of which are under severe pressure from economic activities. In addressing the economic recovery from the COVID-19 crisis, governments need to ensure not to encourage practises that could further undermine the sustainability of the ocean economy, such as overfishing, uncontrolled development of coastal zones, and pollution. This session will focus on best practices, opportunities and challenges for the greening of the ocean economy. The session will discuss the role of integrated approach to ocean management, such as Integrated Coastal Zone Management (ICZM) or Marine Spatial Planning (MSP), to ensure that multiple uses of the ocean are well aligned with the SDGs. How can marine protected areas ensure the sustainable use of marine resources? The debate will also discuss the distributional impact of necessary policy reforms, how these could be addressed and the role of new technologies for sustainable ocean use in the context of the upcoming UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030).

Financing for natural capital

Day 2 - 25 November

 GGSD2020 mountains and kayak

 

15:00 - 16:00 CET

Financial flows need to be diverted from unsustainable to “biodiversity compatible” economic activities in order to achieve the SDG targets on biodiversity and increase the resilience of our societies. However, progress in integrating biodiversity in investment decisions, through practices such as impacts and dependencies assessment, risk management, due diligence and disclosure remains limited. This session will reflect on the data gaps in biodiversity finance reporting, and the barriers and opportunities to develop internationally harmonised approach for tracking biodiversity finance. The debate will also explore the role of public and private initiatives to improve disclosure of biodiversity risk, and the challenges and opportunities that biodiversity loss creates for the insurance sector. The role of multilateral development cooperation institutions in mobilising private investments will also be discussed.

Measuring natural capital and biodiversity

Day 3 - 26 November

GGSD2020 Bridge in woods

14:00 - 15:00 CET

This session will focus on the recent progresses, outstanding challenges and prospects for the natural capita and biodiversity measurement agenda in light of the targets to be agreed at the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) COP15 to take place in 2021. A key challenge for measuring natural capital is that a suite of indicators is required (e.g. forest loss, number of threatened species), as opposed to climate change where the metrics are more easily measured. The recent development in the System of Environmental-Economic Accounting (SEEA) and the outstanding barriers to its widespread adoption will also be discussed. The session will also explore how environmental earth observation and big data could help to better measure changes in natural capital. Furthermore, the session will also discuss recent development in combining environmental data with socio-demographic data in the context of the strong emphasis of the UN Agenda 2030 on inclusiveness.

Addressing climate and biodiversity challenges: Nature-based solutions for risk management

Day 3 - 26 November

GGSD2020 Blue Butterfly

15:00 - 16:00 CET

The international community is increasingly recognising the potential of nature-based solutions to increase society’s resilience to the impacts of climate change, while maximising synergies between ecosystem stewardship and human wellbeing. For example, by investing in the restoration of forests in upper catchment areas not only protects communities downstream from the risk of flooding; it can simultaneously increase carbon sequestration, while protecting species habitat. However, despite their recognised role and potential, the application of nature-based solutions continues to be limited in numbers and scale. Nature-based solutions can help to improve the resilience of our societies to the impact of climate change, such as more intense rainfall, wildfires or heat waves, while simultaneously protecting biodiversity as well as mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. This session will discuss technical, institutional, and financial barriers to the adoption of nature- based solutions for climate change mitigation and adaptation, such as a perception of being “emerging technologies” and lack of expertise, and the benefits from their larger adoption. The debate will also discuss how to increase the coherence between disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation policies, especially in relation to infrastructure planning.

Closing Remarks

Day 3 - November 26

GGSD2020 Mountains and mist

16:00 - 16:15 CET

The Forum's key findings, identified knowledge gaps and future areas of work for the OECD will be provided by Mr. Masamichi Kono, Deputy Secretary-General, OECD