Mind the Compliance Gap: How Insights from International Human Rights Mechanisms Can Help to Implement the Convention on Biological Diversity

Summary

Humanity is at a crossroads in addressing biodiversity loss. Several assessments have reported on the weak compliance with the Aichi Biodiversity Targets by the parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). To address this lack of compliance, the challenges in implementing and enforcing CBD obligations must be understood. Key implementation challenges of the CBD are identified through a content analysis of policy documents, multi-stakeholder interviews, and participant observation at the recent CBD Conference of the Parties. Building on this analysis, the article explores the extent to which the review mechanisms of international human rights law, with their various strategies for eliciting compliance, can help to improve CBD mechanisms. The findings of this article reveal insights that the CBD can draw from international human rights law to address these compliance challenges, such as facilitating the participation of civil society organizations to provide specific input, and engaging independent biodiversity experts to assess implementation. The article concludes that insights from human rights review mechanisms are useful for improving the emerging peer review mechanism of the CBD, which is important for strengthening accountability within the post-2020 global biodiversity framework.

Information

Link to centre authors: Hahn, Thomas, Koh, Niak Sian
Publication info: Koh, N., Ituarte-Lima, C., Hahn, T.. 2021. Mind the Compliance Gap: How Insights from International Human Rights Mechanisms Can Help to Implement the Convention on Biological Diversity. Transnational Environmental Law. http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/s2047102521000169