Dubai, Dec. 9, 2023 -- The following statement was issued today as ministers at the UN Climate Conference, COP28, signed a watershed “Joint Statement on Climate, Nature and People.”

The joint statement was launched by the UAE UNFCC COP28 Presidency and the People’s Republic of China CBD Presidency. The statement calls for adopting a synergetic approach, aligning national climate and biodiversity plans and strategies, to support the Paris Agreement and the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, as well as the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Said Joe Walston, Executive Vice President of Global Conservation Programs at the Wildlife Conservation Society:

“The Joint Statement on Climate, Nature and People is a landmark development as several countries have stepped up to align climate and biodiversity agendas to address the interconnected crises of climate, biodiversity loss and degradation. The ministers chose todayto break from traditional silos and to pursue strategies that put nature at the heart of climate change responses. The next two years are crucial for the world's biodiversity and climate agenda. Countries must align and integrate these strategies to achieve maximum impact on the goals of halting and reversing biodiversity loss and limiting global warming.

“We particularly welcomed in the joint statement the emphasis on ensuring the equitable representation and participation of Indigenous Peoples and local communities in all climate and nature planning processes.

“At WCS, we have long connected our climate and biodiversity strategies as an important approach to tackle the world’s existential crises. We remain committed to working alongside governments and partners to take the words in this joint statement today and put them into action.”