Norway joins important biodiversity initiatives

2021 is an important year for nature and biodiversity worldwide. In connection with the international negotiations on a post-2020 global biodiversity framework, Norway has announced that it is joining two groups of countries that are working to save biodiversity.

Norway is joining two ambitious initiatives. The Global Ocean Alliance is led by the UK and is aiming for the protection of at least 30% of the global ocean by 2030. The High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People is co-chaired by Costa Rica and France, and is championing the goal of protecting at least 30% of the world’s land and ocean by 2030. Membership of these initiatives gives countries an ambitious joint platform for their work.

‘The loss of nature is one of the most serious international crises the world is facing, and can only be resolved through closer international cooperation. Norway has ambitious goals for safeguarding both nature in our own country and the state of the global environment, and it therefore makes sense for us to join both these initiatives,’ said Minister of Climate and Environment Sveinung Rotevatn.

‘Norway will play an active role in the negotiations, and we will do what we can to put in place ambitious international targets for biodiversity and a system for achieving them,’ said Mr Rotevatn.

Norway will use its membership of the two initiatives to focus attention on issues that it is vital to deal with between now and 2030. These include how the world can work towards more sustainable use of the ocean on the basis of the recommendations from the Ocean Panel, and environmental protection as an element of sustainable ocean management.

Both the Alliance and the Coalition are working towards the inclusion of a target of protecting at least 30% of land and ocean in the global biodiversity framework. Norway has also adopted this position in the negotiations.

‘There is clear scientific evidence that it is vital to protect at least 30% of the world in a natural state. This must be reflected in the post-2020 global biodiversity framework,’ said Mr Rotevatn. 

‘An important priority for Norway will be to work for the targets in the new framework to emphasise the protection of areas that are important for biodiversity and of a variety of habitats and ecosystems, sound management, and the development of well connected systems of protected areas,’ said Mr Rotevatn.

Read Norway’s letters to Costa RicaFrance and the UK.

Norway is already playing a leading role in developing an improved planning, reporting and review mechanism for the new post-2020 global biodiversity framework.

With a mechanism of this kind, it will be possible to review countries’ collective performance and progress towards the new global targets at regular intervals. 


  • Negotiations on a post-2020 global biodiversity framework are in progress under the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). According to plan, the framework will be adopted at the next Conference of the Parties (COP 15), which is being held in Kunming, China on 11–24 October this year.

  • Virtual preparatory meetings are being held between 3 May and 13 June.

  • The negotiations build on a scientific basis including assessments by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), which estimates that one million species are facing extinction and ecosystems are critically degraded. Land-use change and changes in use of the oceans are the greatest threat to biodiversity.

  • The most important task at COP 15 will be the adoption of the post-2020 global biodiversity framework. It is expected that more than 20 global targets will be adopted as part of the framework. Even though they will not be legally binding, countries will be expected to take action to achieve them. It is vital to ensure that indigenous peoples, local communities and other groups are consulted during the process.

  • Most countries, but not the US, are parties to the CBD.

  • Key topics to be discussed in the negotiations include:
    • a global target of protecting at least 30% of land and ocean by 2030;
    • a target for increasing the area, connectivity and integrity of natural systems;
    • making use of nature-based solutions, with safeguards for biodiversity, in climate change mitigation and adaptation;
    • sustainable use of biodiversity;
    • putting in place a system for regular review of countries’ collective performance and progress towards the new global targets.
  • More information about the High Ambition Coalition for Nature and People, which is co-chaired by Costa Rica and France: HAC for Nature and People