08/11/2013. In her first address to the GEF Council as UNCCD Executive Secretary, Monique Barbut announced her priorities for advancing the Convention’s implementation and underscored GEF’s role in "breaking the silos" impeding the pace of reporting and of implementation.
She underlined the gains of investing in sustainable land management as an efficient way to ensure comprehensive returns and urged the Council to consider the matter to enable the sixth GEF replenishment to allocate commensurate resources to the land degradation focal area.
Barbut was speaking at the 45th Session of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) Council meetings held on 5-7 November in Washington, DC, United States.
At a panel discussion with the GEF leadership, Council members and Executive Secretaries of the Biodiversity and Chemicals Conventions, which focused on how GEF-financed Conventions could assist Parties to harness synergies in fulfilling their reporting and implementing obligations, she highlighted the complementarities in the climate and biodiversity conventions.
She demonstrated the potential to use common indicators to show the relevance of the Biodiversity Convention’s Aichi Target 15 on land degradation and reclaiming degraded ecosystems for the UNCCD.
With regard to the Nairobi work program on impacts, vulnerability and adaptation to climate change, she stated that for developing countries in particular, any adaptation program will require sustainable land management, a core expertise of the Desertification Convention.
For many countries, addressing land degradation or biodiversity loss and adapting to climate change are part of the same sustainable development package, Barbut asserted.