Immediate implementation is critical for the conservation efforts required in this decade
June 14, 2021, traditional unceded Algonquin Territory/Ottawa, Ontario – The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) welcomes the G7 Leaders’ 2030 Nature Compact released at the conclusion of their meeting in Cornwall, United Kingdom. The Compact commits G7 countries, including Canada, to a global mission to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by 2030, including by supporting a target of conserving or protecting at least 30% of global land and ocean by 2030 “as a critical foundation for the conservation and restoration efforts required this decade”. The Leaders also committed to implementing these targets at the national level, recognizing Indigenous Peoples as full partners.
“With the leaders of seven of the largest economies in the world committed to a global mission to reverse biodiversity loss this decade, we are more hopeful than ever that the need for large-scale action to save nature is finally being taken seriously,” said Sandra Schwartz, CPAWS National Executive Director.
In addition to supporting the 30% target, the agreement also recognizes the importance of implementing high-quality conservation measures, promising that G7 countries will advocate for improved quality, effectiveness, and connectivity of protected areas in the global targets as well.
“We are pleased the Nature Compact commits G7 countries to implementing ‘whole-of-government’ approaches to tackle the nature emergency,” noted Schwartz. “Protecting nature needs to be everyone’s business if we are to be successful in reversing biodiversity loss by 2030. It’s not just the responsibility of environment ministries.”
Commitments to mainstream biodiversity across G7 governments include ensuring nature is taken into account in economic and financial planning and decision-making, supporting sustainable supply chains, and redirecting subsidies and reforming policies away from those that harm nature towards supporting nature-positive actions.
“This G7 commitment reinforces and builds on Canada’s existing promise to protect at least 30% of its land and ocean by 2030 and, when implemented, will help enable the transformational change we need to successfully save nature and tackle climate change,” says Schwartz. “Now we need to hold leaders to account for their promises to implement this Compact and quickly move from commitments to action.”
— 30 —
- The protection of land and ocean is critical to halting the worldwide loss of wildlife habitat, which is the number one cause of population declines for species, in Canada and around the planet. In Canada, more than 600 species are listed as at risk of extinction.
- Global biodiversity loss, happening up to a thousand times faster than the background rate, threatens life on Earth and is now a top-five threat facing the global economy, according to the World Economic Forum. Recent estimates by the insurance firm Swiss Re suggest more than half of global GDP – $42 trillion USD– depends on high-functioning biodiversity and ecosystems.
- In May 2021, environment ministers of G7 nations, including Canada, announced their support for including a target of protecting at least 30% of land and ocean by 2030 in a new Global Biodiversity Framework expected to be finalized and adopted by Parties to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity in Kunming, China in October 2021.
- In October 2020, Canada joined the High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People, made up of more than 60 countries championing the 30X30 target.
- Also in October 2020, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau joined more than 80 world leaders in signing the Leader’s Pledge for Nature which includes commitments to put nature and climate at the heart of COVID-19 recovery strategies and investments.
- Parks and related visitor spending support 64,000 jobs in Canada, generate a return of six to one in GDP, and return 44% of government investment back in taxes. Canada’s parks and protected areas have become increasingly important for domestic tourism as COVID-19 restricts international travel.
- Effective Marine Protected Areas (MPAs) are a key component of a strong Blue Economy. Recent studies show that protecting 30% of Canada’s ocean in effective and well-managed MPAs can restore ocean health and produce an economic return on investments of ten to one.
- The Green Budget Coalition (GBC) includes 25 leading environmental organizations in Canada that analyze environmental sustainability issues and provide fiscal and budgetary recommendations to the federal government. Feature recommendations for nature and biodiversity conservation for the 2021 federal budget included: Nature-Based Climate Solutions and Creating and Managing Protected Areas, including Indigenous protected areas and Guardians programs, among other complementary nature conservation recommendations.
- Read our backgrounder on the Economic Benefits of Protecting Nature in Canada.
- Read our April 2021 news release welcoming the largest Canadian investment ever in nature as part of Budget 2021.
The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS) is Canada’s only nationwide charity dedicated solely to the protection of our public land, ocean, and freshwater, and ensuring our parks and protected areas are managed to protect nature. Since 1963, we have played a leading role in protecting over half a million square kilometres. Our vision is to protect at least half of Canada’s public land and water in a framework of reconciliation – for the benefit of wildlife and people. For more information about CPAWS and the work we do to safeguard Canada’s natural heritage, visit cpaws.org. Join our community on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. Donate today. Take action.
For more information, or to arrange an interview, please contact:
National Director, Communications and Development, CPAWS