Four steps for the Earth: mainstreaming the post-2020 global biodiversity framework

Elsevier, One Earth, Volume 4, 22 January 2021
Authors: 
Milner-Gulland E.J., Addison P., Arlidge W.N.S., Baker J., Booth H., Brooks T. et al.

The upcoming Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) meeting, and adoption of the new Global Biodiversity Framework, represent an opportunity to transform humanity's relationship with nature. Restoring nature while meeting human needs requires a bold vision, including mainstreaming biodiversity conservation in society. We present a framework that could support this: the Mitigation and Conservation Hierarchy. This places the Mitigation Hierarchy for mitigating and compensating the biodiversity impacts of developments (1, avoid; 2, minimize; 3, restore; and 4, offset, toward a target such as “no net loss” of biodiversity) within a broader framing encompassing all conservation actions. We illustrate its application by national governments, sub-national levels (specifically the city of London, a fishery, and Indigenous groups), companies, and individuals. The Mitigation and Conservation Hierarchy supports the choice of actions to conserve and restore nature, and evaluation of the effectiveness of those actions, across sectors and scales. It can guide actions toward a sustainable future for people and nature, supporting the CBD's vision. The adoption of the new Global Biodiversity Framework requires mainstreaming of biodiversity conservation into society. The Mitigation and Conservation Hierarchy places the Mitigation Hierarchy (1, avoid; 2, minimize; 3, restore; and 4, offset biodiversity impacts) within a broader framing encompassing all conservation actions. We illustrate its application by national governments, sub-national levels, companies, and individuals. This integrated framework supports the choice of actions to conserve and restore nature, and evaluation of their effectiveness, across sectors and scales.