Information brief

Role of protected areas in climate change mitigation and biodiversity conservation

There is general consensus that biodiversity loss and climate change are twin crises requiring integrated, comprehensive and holistic approaches. As aptly articulated by António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations, the twin global challenges of climate change and biodiversity loss have to be tackled in a more coordinated manner: “climate change threatens to undermine all efforts to conserve and sustainably manage biodiversity and [that] nature itself offers some of the most effective solutions to avert the worst impacts of a warming planet”. 

Key Messages

  • Widespread consensus has emerged that biodiversity loss and climate change are twin crises that must be addressed together to achieve success in either one.
  • Protected and Conserved Areas (PAs) are the most effective tool to address both biodiversity loss and climate change within a time-frame that reflects the required urgency.
  • New PAs, the expansion of existing PAs and support for OECMs can target places where carbon richness and high biodiversity overlap to create ‘carbon stabilization’ areas.