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22 September 2010 - High-level meeting on biodiversity - Speech by Mrs. Chantal Jouanno, Minister of State responsible for Ecology

(Unofficial translation)

Mr. President,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am very pleased to have the opportunity to speak before this assembly today. We are at a turning point; biodiversity is now a part of the political agenda. We do however acknowledge the failure of past actions. But today we are at the United Nations General Assembly and at the same time as the Summit on the Millennium Development Goals. A joint session would incidentally have been useful.

Biodiversity is a critical issue. It doesn’t just relate to the protection of varieties of flowers or animal species, but deals with all of life.

There are 3 key issues today:

- The establishment of the IPBES: this is the priority. We should consider changing its acronym if we want to make it popular. France would like to act as a facilitator in order to ensure that the IPBES is established as swiftly as possible, by the end of the year.

- We should also recognize the value of biodiversity; in addition I would like to pay tribute to the outstanding work of Pavan Sukdhev. We should in fact recognize the value of our natural heritage, and include biodiversity in our GDP.

- Lastly, the next deadline is the Nagoya Conference: we should adopt a strategic plan, objectives for 2020 and 2050, with in particular the creation of marine protected areas. The adoption of the Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Sharing of Benefits Arising out of their Utilization would ensure the recognition of biodiversity, and its role in growth. We should have a pragmatic vision and above all not waste another 10 years! That’s how we will succeed in mobilizing funding.

Thank you.

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Organisation des Nations Unies Présidence de la République France Diplomatie La France à l'Office des Nations Unies à Genève Union Européenne Première réunion de l'ONU