TRAFFIC Recognises Importance of Sustainable Use for Pandemic Recovery

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TRAFFIC has released a new article discussing the need for biodiversity to be a part of COVID-19 recovery strategiesas well the importance of sustainable use in such strategies going forward.

The statement comes just before the start of the United Nations’ High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) on sustainable development, which will look to address the recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic in a way that promotes sustainable development.

To achieve this, TRAFFIC has urged the HPLF to consider mechanisms for strengthening multisectoral and multidisciplinary collaboration that will integrate health, food security, and biodiversity approaches to reduce the risk of future pandemics.

Multilateral negotiations such as the draft post-2020 global biodiversity framework was given as a successful example of this in practice, with particular mention to targets that recognise the benefits to conservation and humans that are derived from the sustainable use of wild species.

In addition, TRAFFIC noted that the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which will be reviewed during the HLPF, also has a renewed focus on sustainable use as part of their Targets and SDGs.

This announcement by TRAFFIC is not the first time we have seen the COVID-19 pandemic mentioned in reference to wildlife management policy. Last year, the Collaborative Partnership on Sustainable Wildlife Management (CPW), of which the CIC is a member, proposed guiding wildlife management principles that were designed to limit the spread and emergence of zoonotic diseases.

Once again, this announcement by TRAFFIC highlights the complex relationships between pandemics and various other aspects of our lives, rather than just linked to “wildlife trade” as some have suggested.

The CIC joins TRAFFIC in stressing the importance of multidisciplinary collaboration if we are to build towards a safer more sustainable future. To effectively support sustainable development, it is vital that the sustainable use of wildlife is implemented with issues such as health, food security and biodiversity in mind.