Kok, M., Rankovic, A., Löwenhardt, H., Pattberg, P., Prip, C., Widerberg, O, Laurans, Y. (2018). From Paris to Beijing: Insights gained from the UNFCCC Paris Agreement for the post-2020 global biodiversity framework. PBL Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency, The Hague, PBL publication number: 3412, 26 p.


Negotiations have started on a new global framework for biodiversity. In 2020, in Beijing, a new international biodiversity framework will be agreed under the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). This policy brief provides relevant insights for the CBD negotiations gained from an analysis of the Paris Agreement. Three elements of the Paris Agreement receive specific attention: the shift in governance that took place in the UNFCCC between Copenhagen and Paris, the architecture of the Paris Agreement, and the role of non-state actors within the climate regime. The policy brief, furthermore, addresses the required cooperation between the UNFCCC and CBD.

Key Messages

  • The climate regime has undergone a paradigm shift after the failed negotiations at the UNFCCC COP15 in 2009 in Copenhagen. The climate negotiations moved from a ‘regulatory’ model of binding, negotiated emissions targets to a ‘catalytic and facilitative’ model that seeks to create conditions under which actors progressively reduce their emissions through coordinated policy shifts.
  • The Paris Agreement and other pillars of the ‘Paris Package’ provide a coherent set of features that combines a top-down and bottom-up approach and legally binding and non-binding elements in its logic of change.
  • To increase the effectiveness of the CBD, elements from the Paris Agreement that could be considered for the new global biodiversity agreement include long-term targets that operationalise the current 2050 vision, national, non-state and subnational commitments towards achieving those targets and procedural obligations to ensure commitment levels are adequate.
  • For the CBD, there are potential benefits of starting a process similar to the Global Climate Action Agenda of the UNFCCC. For the CBD, the main challenges to strengthen non-state action are related to possible coordination of non-state and sub-national action in relation to national action.
  • Close collaboration between the CBD and the UNFCCC is required in the implementation of the Paris Agreement and the new global biodiversity framework.
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