Nature-based Solutions: Harnessing the potential for ambitious post-2020 biodiversity outcomes


Bulkeley, H & Davis, M (2020). Nature-based solutions: Harnessing the potential for ambitious post-2020 biodiversity outcomes. Towards Post-2020: Expertise On #7. August 2020.

Recognition of the importance of nature has never been greater. A continuing decline in biodiversity, accelerating impacts of climate change, and the urgency of ensuring a sustainable and just recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic are generating unprecedented momentum behind the imperative of working with nature to address societal challenges. In this policy brief, McKenna Davis (Ecologic Institute) and Harriet Bulkeley (Durham University) highlight the importance of prioritizing nature-based solutions in the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework and supporting their uptake within and beyond the biodiversity community.

Nature-based solutions offer a tool to generate transformative change, align the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) mission with the UNFCCC, UNCCD and Sustainable Development Goals, and mainstream biodiversity across sectoral decision-making processes. They also provide an important means to engage with finance, business, and societal actors who increasingly see the biodiversity, climate, and sustainability challenges as one.

This policy brief outlines how nature-based solutions can drive transformative change, forge connections between people and nature, support CBD goals, and provide leadership through the post-2020 global biodiversity framework. Specifically, leadership can be demonstrated by:

  • Including a statement on the principles to be followed in the design, implementation, and stewardship of nature-based solutions in the
  • post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework;
  • Embedding nature-based solutions as a means through which multiple action targets can be realised;
  • Encouraging the uptake of nature-based solutions across all levels of government and by actors across the whole of society;
  • Mandating reporting on the progress and performance of nature-based solutions;
  • Ensuring that resources are allocated for building capacity, fostering exchange, and supporting the implementation of nature-based solutions.

The brief has been developed within the ‘Post-2020 Biodiversity Framework, EU Support’ project, which aims to facilitate and catalyse the engagement of various to work towards an ambitious Post-2020 Biodiversity Framework and its efficient implementation. This and other briefs in the project open a space for debate and foster common ground among all CBD meeting participants, and the broader biodiversity community.

The brief "Nature-based Solutions: Harnessing the potential for ambitious post-2020 biodiversity outcomes" [pdf, 2 MB, English] is available for download.

A short video introducing the brief can be viewed here:

The post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework has a unique opportunity to show the leadership required to ensure that nature-based solutions deliver a sustainable and just future for all.
Harriet Bulkeley (Durham University)
4 pp.
Table of contents
CBD, post-2020, biodiversity, nature-based solutions, climate change mitigation, climate change adaptation

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