IUCN and CBD Secretariat sign invasive species agreement

08 November 2011 | News story

A supplementary agreement for the implementation of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 regarding invasive species has been signed by Jane Smart, Global Director, Biodiversity Conservation Group, of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and Ahmed Djoghlaf, Executive Secretary of the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).

Invasive species are recognized as a major threat to biological diversity and ecosystem services. The threat of invasive species is likely to increase with growing trade and travel so more action is needed. However, the capacity of many countries to manage and improve border control and quarantine invasive species is not yet sufficient to achieve the Aichi Biodiversity Target 9 – ‘By 2020, invasive alien species and pathways are identified and prioritized, priority species are controlled or eradicated, and measures are in place to manage pathways to prevent their introduction and establishment.'

“Invasive alien species are a global issue; however, existing capacity at the local level is not adequate enough to stop it,” says Ahmed Djoghlaf, CBD Executive Secretary. “Both IUCN and the CBD are strongly committed to assist Parties in gaining the tools and training to halt biological invasions.”

To support the effort against invasive species, IUCN and the CBD have recognized that scientific data and cooperation is needed for the early detection and rapid response to invasive species. Therefore the IUCN Species Survival Committee Invasive Species Specialist Group and IUCN Invasive Species Initiative have agreed to work together with the Secretariat of the CBD to promote the achievement of Target 9 and support initiatives concerning invasive species.

“Invasive species are a sinister and significant threat to the biodiversity and ecosystem services of this planet, causing serious harm to human health and development,” says Jane Smart, Director, Biodiversity Conservation Group, IUCN. "Yet by working together with the Secretariat of the CBD and governments worldwide there is much that can be done to bring their insidious spread under control.”