Biodiversity Planning

© 2017 Richard J. Weller, Claire Hoch, and Chieh Huang, Atlas for the End of the World (CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0)

With its roots in the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (the Rio “Earth Summit”) the Convention on Biological Diversity (to which 196 nations are party and 168 are signatory, i.e., legally bound) is the world’s overarching biodiversity planning document. At the tenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties, held in 2010 in Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, Japan, the parties adopted a revised and updated Strategic Plan for Biodiversity, including most importantly the 20 Aichi targets. Under the convention parties are required to prepare National Biodiversity Strategy Action Plans (NBSAPs) and these should by now be updated to reflect the Aichi targets. At the time of writing, the CBD reports that of the 196 nations who are party to the convention 185 have submitted NBSAPs. The dates of publication and the status of these NBSAPs are available on the National Performance Index. 1

Under their NBSAPs nations are encouraged by the convention to extend their national plans to the sub-national, regional, and city level, at which scale the convention recommends “holistic landscape management approaches” and “biodiversity friendly city design”. 2

Of the 142 Nations who preside over the hotspots three do not have NBSAPs in progress: Kosovo, Palestine, and the United States. Of those that do, only 46 of these NBSAPs have been published after 2010, meaning that almost two thirds of the nation’s responsible for the hotspots do not have planning which reflects the global protected area target increase from 10% to 17% in the Aichi targets. Additionally, insofar as we can tell from a desktop analysis, only 16 of the 142 nations presiding over the hotspots have anything resembling land-use plans which make clear spatial commitments to protecting and connecting biodiversity.

1 Convention on Biological Diversity, “National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPSs),” (accessed June 1, 2016).

2 Convention on Biological Diversity, “COP 10 Decision X/22,” (accessed June 1, 2016).

Map created by Richard Weller, Claire Hoch, and Chieh Huang using data/information from the following sources:

1. National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans

Convention on Biological Diversity, “Latest NBSAPs,”

2. Hotspots

Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund, “The Biodiversity Hotspots,” (accessed July 1, 2014). Data made available under the Creative Commons BY-SA 4.0 License: