Today EU delegates are joining world experts and government representatives at the 10th Plenary of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) - the independent international body that provides decision makers with the most comprehensive scientific information on nature-related issues.
The Plenary, hosted by the United States of America and held in Bonn, Germany, will adopt a new assessment report on invasive alien species together with its Summary for Policymakers and is expected to conclude its works on 2 September.
EU and R&I contribution to IPBES and science cooperation for biodiversity
The European Union, in its EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030, wants to put Europe’s biodiversity on the path to recovery. Research and innovation is key to achieving the goals of the strategy, which is a cornerstone of the European Green Deal, and the commitments under the Kunming Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework adopted at the UN Convention on Biological Diversity COP 15 in December 2022.
In this context, the EU supports the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) with both funding and knowledge.
The European Union is a major donor of IPBES, with a total budget of € 9 million of contributions to its Trust Fund from 2019 to 2028 coming from the EU research and innovation funding budget, via the EU4IPBES project. In addition to this direct support, the European Union, through its research and innovation funding programmes (Framework Programme 7, Horizon 2020, Horizon Europe), has been financing impactful research projects on biodiversity that delivered many results relevant for IPBES. This included dedicated coordination and support actions filling critical knowledge gaps and delivering policy-relevant outcomes that inform the implementation of the European Green Deal and of the Global Biodiversity Framework.
On the occasion of the IPBES Plenary, DG Research and Innovation publishes a new analysis “Contribution of the EU R&I framework programmes to IPBES - Insights from the references of IPBES reports” showing how EU-funded research projects contributed to the work of IPBES in recent years. Among all the publications cited in the last three IPBES assessment reports (2019 to 2022), the analysis identified 691 publications linked to 388 EU-funded projects – funded under the 7th Framework Programme for Research (2007-2013) and Horizon 2020 (2014-2020).
Recognising the importance of science cooperation for biodiversity, Horizon Europe, the EU's research and innovation programme for 2021-2027, will invest over € 1 billion in this important research area. The results of this research will inform future IPBES assessments. Overall, 10% of Horizon Europe budget is devoted to tackling biodiversity, including via four EU Missions – Mission Adaptation to Climate Change, Mission Ocean and Waters, Mission Climate-Neutral and Smart Cities, and Mission a Soil Deal for Europe. These flagship initiatives anchored in EU Research and Innovation are paving the way to accelerate the implementation of the European Green Deal.
The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) is an independent intergovernmental body that provides decision makers with the most comprehensive scientific information on biodiversity. Established in 2012, the IPBES Platform is currently composed of 143 governmental representatives, hundreds of world experts and observers. The EU has had the status of IPBES enhanced observer since 2018 and it takes part in the IPBES Plenary represented by delegates of the European Commission. Thanks to its functions, IPBES:
- Provides objective scientific assessments on biodiversity;
- Helps to highlight and prioritise knowledge gaps and research needs on the topic of biodiversity;
- Enhances the capacity of institutions and the skills of scientists across Europe and beyond, thanks to scientific cooperation;
- Supports policymakers with tools and scientific methodologies;
- Enhances communication and outreach on biodiversity;
- Works on the improvement of the effectiveness of the IPBES itself.
Based on input from thousands of experts. IPBES’s reports are regarded as the most authoritative source of information on the science of biodiversity since they are subject to extensive review by experts and governments, ensuring the highest standards of quality and policy relevance. They inform the UN’s biodiversity negotiations and have played a critical role in shaping the global response to the nature crisis.
10th IPBES Plenary
While the 10th IPBES Plenary will mainly focus on the new assessment report on invasive alien species, it will also elect a new Bureau and a new Chair for the next three years and decide on future assessments to be undertaken. It will also continue its efforts to boost the engagement with its sister body, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), as the nature and climate crises are interlinked.
During the Plenary, IPBES will welcome 4 new members (Guinea, Namibia, Oman and Palau), meaning 143 countries are now members of the Platform, among which 23 EU Member States (Cyprus, Malta, Poland and Slovenia being observers).
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