In 2010, the European Union missed its target to halt biodiversity decline because of weak implementation of legislation, lack of funding and a systemic failure to reform sectoral policies such as agriculture and fisheries. Recognising the urgency and importance of safeguarding our ecosystems, the EU has adopted a new 2020 headline target.
The 2020 headline target is accompanied by a 2050 vision; both do not only refer to halting biodiversity loss but also to the role of ecosystems and the need to restore them. The strategy includes six targets that reflect the main drivers of biodiversity loss that can be linked to EU policy.
The EU’s 2020 headline target was endorsed by the European Heads of States in March 2010. The EU 2020 Biodiversity Strategy, with its six targets, has been supported by the Environment Council and the European Parliament in 2011 and 2012 respectively.
However, targets and strategies are only as good as the action actually taken. Two years after the Nagoya summit, the European BirdLife Partnership has undertaken a first stocktaking exercise of progress made ‘on the road to’ the 2020 target and intends to repeat this assessment at regular intervals until 2020.