Finalising the Global Biodiversity Deal – The Nordic Approach

03.05.22 | Declaration
The Nordic Ministers for the Environment and Climate approved the following Declaration at their meeting in Oslo on 3 May 2022.



The IPBES Global Assessment (2019) sent a clear message to the world of the unprecedented loss of biodiversity. The assessment highlighted land/sea use change, direct exploitation, climate change, pollution, and invasive alien species as the main direct drivers behind the loss. The global deal for nature must address all drivers to bring nature and its contributions to people on a path to recovery.

Alongside nature conservation and other effective conservation measures, the importance of sustainable use as a tool to reduce threats to biodiversity should be stressed. The development of sustainable use in sectors such as agriculture, aquaculture and fisheries based on renewable resources and land, freshwater or ocean management is key. Harvest levels and management practices in these sectors need to be sustainable.

As well, it is crucial to focus on win-win solutions for both biodiversity and climate. It is fundamental to safeguard biodiversity and ecosystems such as rainforests and mangroves to ensure climate resilient development. Nature-based solutions are according to IPBES estimated to provide 37% of climate change mitigation by 2030, with likely co-benefits for biodiversity.

By way of example indigenous peoples and local communities have managed their territories on land and sea in ways that are adjusted to local conditions and in a manner compatible with or supporting biodiversity conservation, as pointed out by the IPBES Global Assessment.

There is an urgent need for a structural and integrated approach to implement the global biodiversity framework at all levels and by all sectors of society, including measures and approaches to enhance transparency and comparability of national actions and ambitions, monitoring, reporting and review of implementation at the national and global levels. The approach should be future proof and create a collective push for steady progress towards the achievement of the goals and targets in the framework.

We, the Nordic Ministers for Climate and the Environment from Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland:


Recalling the Nordic Ministerial Declaration on Biodiversity, Oceans and Climate adopted in Helsinki 12 May 2021 and the Vision of the Nordic Council of Ministers that the region should become the most sustainable and integrated region in the world in 2030. A green Nordic Region is one of our three strategic priorities that promotes innovation and cooperation for sustainable use and conservation of our natural heritage;

Welcoming the GEF 8 replenishment and the increased allocation for biodiversity by 36%, which will raise the level of ambition and the financial means to progress towards the global goals and targets of the biodiversity framework;

Recognizing that urgent integrated action is needed for transformative change, to halt and reverse biodiversity loss through the sustainable management of land, freshwater and ocean;

Highlighting that nature-based solutions can play an important role in solving global challenges, such as biodiversity loss and ecosystems degradation, and contribute to, disaster risk reduction and climate change mitigation and adaptation;

Recognizing that security of tenure of lands and natural resources, by indigenous peoples and local communities in particular, is essential for biodiversity conservation and sustainable livelihoods.

Emphasizing the importance of incentivising land-owners and industry to conserve, maintain and sustainably use biodiversity and restore ecosystem functions whilst providing sustainable livelihoods and contributing to climate mitigation;

Agree to step up efforts for and mainstream biodiversity in the Nordic Region through sustainable consumption and production initiatives, reduced food and plastic waste, healthy oceans, nature-based solutions, financing biodiversity and promoting human livelihoods, including the traditional livelihoods of indigenous peoples and local communities;

Also agree to support global efforts to protect and restore biodiversity rich areas that capture and store carbon, and to prevent and reduce the impact of natural disasters to address the interlinkages between climate and biodiversity;

Further agree to scale up implementation of nature-based solutions, as defined by The United Nations Environment Assembly, that protect, conserve, restore, sustainably use and manage natural or modified terrestrial, freshwater, coastal and marine ecosystems, which address social, economic and environmental challenges effectively and adaptively, while simultaneously providing human well-being, ecosystem services and resilience and biodiversity benefits and thereby pursuing the leading role of the Nordic countries in implementing nature-based solutions across borders and regions;

Promoting ways for Nordic consumers to make healthy and sustainable choices, with joint efforts relating to sustainable consumption reducing by at least half the waste, including food waste, and eliminating the overconsumption of natural resources and strengthening sustainable production;

Welcoming the progress made at the Geneva Biodiversity Conference 14 – 29 March 2022, at the resumed 24th meeting of Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice, the third meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Implementation, and the third meeting of the Open Ended Working Group on the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework;

Urging Parties to the Convention on biological diversity to finalise the draft global biodiversity framework at the fourth meeting of the Open Ended Working Group in Nairobi, Kenya 21-26 June 2022, and adopt an ambitious and transformative global biodiversity framework at COP 15 (in Kunming, China), with emphasis on the following:

  • Adopt ambitious and measurable goals and targets on biodiversity in line with the three objectives of the Convention;
  • Underline the important role and contributions of indigenous peoples and local communities as stewards of biodiversity and ensuring their full and effective participation in decision-making related to biodiversity;
  • Furthermore respecting and ensuring the rights of Indigenous Peoples in accordance with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples;
  • Reduce our global ecological footprint to a level well within planetary boundaries;
  • Mobilize resources from all sources to achieve the goals and targets of the  global biodiversity framework, and put in place effective legal and policy measures to help achieve them, based on ecosystem approaches, environmental principles to produce gains for biodiversity and human health and well-being;
  • Align public and private financial flows with the goals and targets of the global biodiversity framework;
  • Conserve at least 30% of the ocean and land areas globally, including by use of other effective conservation measures by 2030;
  • Sustainably manage all areas used for agriculture, aquaculture, fisheries and forestry and other extraction and production activities;  
  • Ensure that all land and marine areas globally are under integrated biodiversity-inclusive spatial planning;
  • Enhance the integrity and connectivity of all ecosystems, supporting healthy, viable and resilient populations of all native species;
  • Emphasize that COP15 should agree on an ambitious target to ensure increased restoration of degraded freshwater, marine and terrestrial ecosystems, and recognize the role of restauration as key for 2030 achievements;
  • Promote urgent national action to halt biodiversity loss and strengthen policy measures to mainstream biodiversity into all sectors, and make significant progress in mapping, eliminating, reforming, redirecting or repurposing subsidies harmful to biodiversity in a just, effective and equitable way; 
  • Emphasize the importance of human rights and intergenerational equity, and recognising the role and participation of younger generations as drivers of transformative change;
  • Emphasize that a structured approach for planning, monitoring, reporting and review with a view to enhancing implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity should be part of the global biodiversity framework, including measures to enhance transparency and comparability at the national and global levels;


Agree to follow up COP15 in Kunming by, inter alia:

  • Conducting an analysis of the outcomes of COP15, focusing on how Nordic implementation can be enhanced through cooperation at the Nordic level;
  • Swiftly updating the national biodiversity strategies and action plans in accordance with the global biodiversity framework;
  • Promoting Nordic co-operation to ensure that nature-based solutions with safeguards support social, economic, and environmental dimensions through cost-effective measures;
  • Increasing knowledge and cooperation on how to incorporate the impacts of climate change in the integrated and ecosystem-based management of the marine environment. 
  • Promoting work on nature-related dependencies, risk assessments and impacts into the business and financial sectors through, inter alia, disclosure frameworks, reporting and risk management;
  • Promoting and supporting the full and effective participation of indigenous peoples and local communities in the implementation of the global biodiversity framework;
  • Promoting and supporting the full and effective participation of youth and other stakeholders in the implementation of the global biodiversity framework;
  • Enhancing conservation and sustainable management of all ocean areas;
  • Halting the loss and increase the extent and improve the condition of coastal and marine ecosystems, in particular critical ecosystems such as mangroves, seagrasses, salt marshes, kelp beds, sand dunes, reefs and deep sea ecosystems.


Espen Barth Eide 

Minister of Climate and Environment, Norway


Annika Strandhäll

Minister for Climate and the Environmental, Sweden


Guðlaugur Þór Þórðarson

Minister of the Environment, Energy and Climate, Iceland


Lea Wermelin 

Minister for Environment, Denmark


Emma Kari

Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, Finland


Kalistat Lund

Minister for Agriculture, Self-Sufficiency, Energy and Environment, Greenland


Magnus Rasmussen

Ministry of Environment, Industry and Trade, Faroe Islands


Alfons Röblom

Minister, Åland