Canada welcomes the world for COP15 to protect nature
December 6, 2022
From the red sand beaches of Prince Edward Island in the Atlantic, to the snow-capped Rockies in the West, to the permafrost that covers much of the Canadian Arctic – Canada is known for our landscapes. Nature is part of who we are as Canadians, but it is under threat. Today, we are welcoming the world to Canada to make sure nature remains part of who we will be for generations to come.
The Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, was in Montréal today to welcome delegates from around the world to the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP15) to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity. As a global leader in conservation, Canada stepped up to be the host location for COP15 from December 7 to 19, 2022, and renew the call for ambitious action to protect nature.
In his opening remarks, the Prime Minister highlighted Canada’s commitment to ensuring COP15 is a success by working with international partners to reach an agreement on an ambitious Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF). The GBF would provide a collective roadmap that will guide worldwide efforts on biodiversity conservation until 2030.
In support of this goal, Prime Minister Trudeau today announced that Canada will provide a new contribution of $350 million to support developing countries – home to the vast majority of the world’s biodiversity – to advance conservation efforts. This funding will support the implementation of the future GBF. This is in addition to the more than $1 billion Canada has already pledged to support climate action projects that address the effects of climate change on biodiversity loss in developing countries.
Today’s new investment further positions Canada as a global leader in protecting nature. It is in addition to billions of dollars in historic investments we have made since 2016 to conserve nature and biodiversity here at home and around the world. By stepping up and bringing the world together in Montréal, we can stop biodiversity loss and build a healthy planet for future generations.
“When people think of Canada, they think of our landscapes and the richness of our nature – parts of who we are. Today, we welcome the world to Montréal to continue working together to make sure the planet we leave to our kids and grandkids has clean air, clean water, and an abundance of nature to enjoy.”
The Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
“The fight to protect nature has never been more important than it is right now. With a million species at risk of extinction around the world, COP15 is a generational opportunity to work together to halt and reverse biodiversity loss and create a nature-positive world. Canada stepped up to welcome the world for this conference and sees it as an opportunity to rally federal, provincial, territorial, and Indigenous ambition to protect 30 per cent of our lands and waters by 2030.”
The Hon. Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change
- Canada has ambitious goals to protect 25 per cent of its lands and oceans by 2025, and 30 per cent of each – a land mass almost as large as the European Union – by 2030. At COP15, Canada will continue to push other countries to commit to conserving 30 per cent of the world’s land and oceans by 2030.
- Canada is already a leader in nature conservation:
- We have made the two largest investments to protect our lands in Canadian history since 2016: more than $1 billion for the Nature Legacy initiative, and $2.3 billion from Budget 2021 to protect nature, fight climate change, and create jobs.
- These investments include more than $440 million to support First Nations, Inuit, and Métis to protect nature and biodiversity through their unique rights and ways of knowing. It also is an important part of advancing reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples.
- In the weeks leading to COP15, Canada already announced over $185 million in funding for conservation initiatives here at home and important steps forward for species at risk, including:
- $109 million from the Nature Smart Climate Solutions Fund for 40 conservation projects across the country;
- More than $60 million through the Enhanced Nature Legacy initiative to support the recovery and protection of some of Canada’s most iconic species; and
- The launch of consultations on the assessment of the status of the Monarch butterfly and the Western Bumble Bee.
- The 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP15) to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity brings together nearly 20,000 delegates from more than 190 countries and member states to engage in important negotiations and dialogue around biodiversity conservation.
- The Canadian delegation at COP15 is led by the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Steven Guilbeault, and includes representatives from the federal, provincial, and territorial governments, Indigenous organizations, civil society organizations, non-governmental organizations, businesses, and youth.
- At COP15, Canada’s pavilion will showcase Canadian action and leadership on biodiversity conservation, promote partnerships and ambitious action, and amplify the voices of Indigenous Peoples, women, and youth. An Indigenous village will showcase the vital role of Indigenous Peoples as stewards of the land and offer a gathering space for Indigenous participants at the conference.