[Reader-list] Review of implementation biodiversity action plans went missing, definitions hijacked the agenda of CBD COP

Kabir Khan kabirkhan1989 at gmail.com
Mon Oct 6 23:48:35 CDT 2014

Review of implementation biodiversity action plans went missing,
definitions hijacked the agenda of CBD COP
*Dispatches from Pyeong Chang, S. Korea *

The weather in Pyeong Chang (S. Korea) is very cold. The participants of
Conference of Parties (COP) – 12 with their multiple agendas and
contestations, counter statements are keeping the negotiation rooms very
warm. The parties to convention are extremely thankful to Korean government
for warm hospitality irrespective of the fact that everyone is freezing in
plenary and working group tents. They are showing their deep gratitude by
opening each and every statement they make (intervention as it is called in
COP terminology), with ‘we show our gratitude to Korean Government for
being a warm host’…blah, blah, blah. I’m sure the Korean government must be
tired of listening to the same thing over again and again.  Ah! And then
they thank the elected chair and keep reminding her that they will be very

Last day I was following the Working Group –II (Convention on Biological
Diversity) where the first reading of decision draft text
undertaken with discussion on item number: 19 on the agenda of draft text
i.e. Article 8 (J).

Article 8 (J) which deals with the traditional knowledge, innovation and
practices of convention (on biological diversity) is one of the most
contested pieces where agreement was reached over a period of time.
Restating it in the archaic language of COP terminology- it has no Square
Brackets.  “Article- (8) *Each Contracting Party shall, as far as possible
and as appropriate: (J) Subject to its national legislation, respect,
preserve and maintain knowledge, innovations and practices of indigenous
and local communities embodying traditional lifestyles relevant for the
conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity and promote their
wider application with the approval and involvement of the holders of such
knowledge, innovations and practices and encourage the equitable sharing of
the benefits arising from the utilization of such knowledge, innovations
and practices;*”

In addition to the first reading of draft text, the parties were also
supposed to undertake the mid-term review of implementation of Article 8
(J) in their countries. While most countries from developing global south
very nicely avoided the review and came up with recommendation of replacing
the term ‘Indigenous and local communities’ to  a more ‘appropriate’ term
coined by UN Permanent forum of Indigenous Issues  ‘Indigenous Peoples and
Local Communities’. Continued here...



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