Increasingly, BirdLife Partners have contributed to the shaping of environmental conventions (CBD, CMS, Ramsar and others) both directly, and working through their governments. This process is slowly helping to secure the status of threatened birds and their habitats (including Important Bird Areas).
About 56% (n=108) of BirdLife Partners are in least developed and developing countries, also known as Development Assisted Countries (DAC countries) as designated by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development. A significant number of these countries are also signatories to international environmental conventions e.g. the Convention on Biological Diversity (n=58), Convention on Migratory Species (n=27) and the Ramsar Convention (n=54). However, their governments have not always been able to implement the national requirements of these conventions. Increasingly, the policy and advocacy capacity of the BirdLife Partners in several of these countries has helped their governments to deliver favourable outcomes, including through discussions at the crucial Conferences of Parties (COPs).
BirdLife Partners have regularly attended COPs as part of their government delegations, as part of a BirdLife team, or at times as individual observers, alongside other NGOs. Their contribution aims to raise the profile of threatened bird species and key sites (particularly Important Bird Areas), among other relevant issues. As a result of such work, substantial progress has been achieved at the national level. For example, Nature Uganda (the BirdLife partner in Uganda) worked with their government to nominate nine wetland IBAs for designation as Ramsar sites. This demonstrates how, working together, BirdLife Partners and governments can achieve important conservation outcomes (BirdLife International 2007).
The capacity for BirdLife Partners to participate in these high profile policy discussions is evident in the increased numbers that have attended the COPs over the years. There is also a gradual increase in participation at the COPs by Partners from DAC countries. It is expected this positive trend will continue and help to secure the future for threatened species and their habitats in most of the DAC countries, where a large proportion of these species and sites are found.
BirdLife International (2008) Partner inputs to environmental conventions help to secure the future for birds and their habitats. Presented as part of the BirdLife State of the world's birds website. Available from: http://www.birdlife.org/datazone/sowb/casestudy/204. Checked: 19/06/2013
|Key message: Working to fill gaps in coverage|