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Section on Countries in Special Situations +66 2 288 1234 [email protected]

The overall progress on life on land is slow in Asia and the Pacific. Seven targets are currently measurable, and the region is likely to achieve only one of them (Official Development Assistance for biodiversity). Current trends in forest and biodiversity losses need to be reversed, because they are forecast to worsen in most countries in the region by 2030. To achieve its commitments to the 2030 Agenda, Asia and the Pacific must also increase its protection of terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems and improve forest management and the conservation of mountain ecosystems. Wildlife and ecosystem conservation is vital to prevent future pandemics and the transfer of diseases from animals to humans. The 2018 Intergovernmental Science Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) Asia-Pacific Regional Assessment states that “Direct drivers, such as unsustainable use, illegal trade in wildlife, conversion of habitats, invasive alien species, pollution and climate change, are combining with indirect drivers such as socioeconomic and demographic changes to create stress and risks to ecosystems, threatening livelihoods and food security for millions of people. Climate change will exacerbate these impacts, especially among indigenous and vulnerable communities.” Rural livelihoods are intimately connected with and negatively affected by the deteriorating health of terrestrial ecosystems. Similarly, women, who depend disproportionately on natural resources given their limited ownership of land and other productive assets, are more affected by the loss of forest land and other terrestrial ecosystems. Moreover, as evidenced by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, adverse impacts on biodiversity and ecosystems are also accompanied by increased health risks such as zoonotic diseases as the potential for people-wildlife and livestock-wildlife interactions are intensified. Lastly, a key challenge identified in the United Nations Economic and Social Commission on Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) multi-stakeholder 2021 survey was the need to ensure engagement of communities and indigenous peoples in biodiversity conservation and protection.

Contact
Section on Countries in Special Situations +66 2 288 1234 [email protected]