The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) coordinates international cooperation in the field of biodiversity for food and agriculture. Its central coordination and negotiating body is the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA). It is organised in intergovernmental technical working groups on various topics such as animal or plant genetic resources.
International cooperation for the conservation of microorganisms and invertebrates should be strengthened in the future. Its great importance was recognised at the 11th regular meeting of CGRFA 2007. Reports on status and trends of conservation and sustainable use will be prepared for the following topics:
• soil microorganisms
• biological pest control
• plant pathogens
• ruminant digestion
• agroindustrial processes
• food production
Convention on Biological Diversity CBD
The CBD (Convention on Biological Diversity) was adopted in 1992 and entered into force in 1993. It has three main objectives:
1. the conservation of biological diversity
2. the sustainable use of the components of biological diversity
3. the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources
The CBD thematic work programmes address agriculture, forestry and fisheries. Within these programmes, there are important cross-cutting initiatives for agriculture and food, including diversity of pollinators, soil diversity and nutrition.
In order to stop the progressive loss of biodiversity, the parties of the CBD adopted the "Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020" in 2010. It defines 20 concrete targets for action, the so-called Aichi biodiversity targets. The CBD Secretariat is based in Montreal, Canada. The agreement currently has 196 parties.
Coalition of the willing on pollinators
During the 13th CBD Conference of the Parties 2016 in Cancun, Mexico, the Coalition of the willing on pollinators was founded by initiative of the Netherlands. Germany is one of thirteen founding members.
The members of this coalition of the willing commit themselves to promote the protection of pollinators and their habitats, to regularly exchange experiences and support relevant actors as well as to promote research into the protection of pollinators. At the 6th plenary session of IPBES 2018 in Medellin, Colombia, other countries had already joined.
Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services IPBES
The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) was established in 2012. It is an intergovernmental platform for scientific policy advice. It is often compared with its elder sister IPCC on climate change. Its core task is to prepare reports on the current state and development of biodiversity and its ecosystem services. To this end, IPBES does not conduct its own research, but collects and evaluates available knowledge worldwide. The assessments are used to derive recommendations and options for action to protect biological diversity and to support political decision-makers in their work.
The four areas of responsibility of IPBES include:• The identification of scientific evidence needed by policy makers• Regular reports on the current state of knowledge on biodiversity and ecosystem services and their interactions• The identification of policy relevant instruments and methods to support the formulation and implementation of policy measures• Prioritising capacity building needs to further develop the political-scientific interface and to provide and raise funding and other support
The IPBES secretariat is located in Bonn.
IPBES assessment on pollinators
In February 2016, IPBES published its first assessment on the global situation of pollinators: "Indispensable helpers for global food security and stable ecosystems". The assessment compiles scientifically based information on status and trends and on causes for change. The resulting risks for pollinators, pollination and food production as well as policy options are pointed out.
The assessment with more than 800 pages shows scientifically founded and objective the high decline of pollinators in different regions of the world, which has continued for years. Based on the findings, the experts derive recommendations for the protection of pollinators and their habitats.