UNEA6 side-event: Join us when we Unleash the Power of GBF Targets 15 and 16
The Sustainable Consumption for Biodiversity: Unleashing the Power of GBF Targets 15 and 16 event will be held online in the context of the 6th UN Environment Assembly. This side event will emphasize the urgent need for a shift towards sustainable consumption patterns to address the underlying drivers of biodiversity loss.
The event is organized by Consumers International, in partnership with the Consumer Information for Sustainable Consumption and Production Programme of the One Planet network, Forest Stewardship Council and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development BioTrade Initiative.
The Sustainable Consumption for Biodiversity: Unleashing the Power of GBF Targets 15 and 16 event aims to highlight the transformative potential of the Global Biodiversity Framework.
As a reminder, Target 15 aims for businesses to assess, disclose and reduce biodiversity-related risks and negative impacts. Target 16 aims for enabling sustainable consumption choices to reduce waste and overconsumption.
Target 15 holds an untapped power to drive the necessary transformation of businesses, particularly large and transnational companies and financial institutions, towards sustainability. This target addresses the core need to develop policies, legal frameworks, and administrative measures that enable businesses to drastically reduce their impact on biodiversity. By effectively implementing this target, we can shift towards an economic system that respects planetary boundaries, ensures a sustainable future for all, and promotes the responsible provision of goods and services.
Target 15 serves as a crucial stepping stone towards the realization of Target 16, paving the way for a sustainable system that empowers consumers from all walks of life to have and to make sustainable consumption choices. By taking legal, administrative, and policy measures to encourage and enable businesses, including large and transnational companies and financial institutions, to monitor, disclose, and reduce their impacts on biodiversity, we lay the foundation for a transformative shift in our consumption patterns. This means empowering consumers to make sustainable choices that align with their values and contribute to a more sustainable future. This enables us to collectively reduce the global footprint of consumption, ensuring that all people can live well in harmony with our planet.
The event will discuss the role of governments and businesses in providing information to consumers and enabling well-informed choices for more sustainable consumption. Its main objectives are to:
- Raise awareness of the link between consumption and its impact on biodiversity and ecosystem services.
- Discuss and present solutions for mitigating the impact of human activities on biodiversity and ecosystem services.
The event is structured around:
- Existing and forthcoming tools, resources, and capacity-building opportunities,
- Action in practice: case studies of government policies and business action on consumer information,
- Recommendations for effective implementation of GBF Targets 15 (b) and 16.
The session will be in the form of a panel discussion, moderated by Martina Fleckenstein, WWF Global Policy Director from WWF International.
18:30 – 18:35 hrs EAT: Opening of the session
18:35 – 18:45 hrs EAT: Firestarter discussion on the challenge of implementing GBF target 15 and 16 of the Montreal-Kumin Agreement.
18:45 – 19:25 hrs EAT: Panel discussion involving:
- Mr. Peter Andrews, Sustainable Consumption for All, Consumer Rights, Innovation & Impact at Consumers International
- Ms. Bettina Hedden-Dunkhorst, Head of Division of International Nature Conservation at the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation
- Mr. Harrison Ochieng Kojwang, Senior Affairs & Engagement Advisor, FSC International
- Mr. Dr. Taye Teferi, Interim Senior Regional Director for Africa at TRAFFIC
- Mr. Jan Christian Polania Giese, Senior Project Manager at adelphi
19:25 – 19:35 hrs EAT: Q&A with the audience
19:35 – 19:45 hrs EAT: Closing remarks
Peter is the Director of Consumer Rights, Innovation & Impact at Consumers International, the membership organization for consumer groups around the world. As part of the Leadership Team, he is responsible for developing and delivering innovative and impactful programs through the organization's Change Agenda, bringing together consumer rights and system insight. Prior to this he was Head of Sustainability Policy at the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and was responsible for the development and delivery of the industry's sustainable and ethical trade policies. He is a Trustee of charity Focus on Labour Exploitation (FLEX) and has had additional external roles including co-chair of the UK Home Office's Modern Slavery Strategy and Implementation Group on Transparency in Supply Chains.
Sheila brings to this position more than 30 years of management and technical expertise from a range of institutions. Sheila was the Director of the Green Climate Fund and Global Environment Facility operations at the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). She has previously served as an Environmental Specialist at a U.S. State Department of Environmental Protection, as well as at the Environment Liaison Centre International and the Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. At UNEP, she held positions ranging from Senior Advisor in the organization’s Strategic Implementation Team to Acting Director of the Policy and Programme Division and Deputy Director of the GEF Coordination Division. Under Sheila’s leadership at IUCN, she grew the programme from the two largest global environmental funding mechanisms five-fold, increasingly bringing in actors from the banking, investment and insurance sectors alongside those from sectors such as energy and agriculture.
Bettina Hedden-Dunkhorst heads the Division of International Nature Conservation at the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN). Her work focuses on the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services at a global scale. This includes promoting sustainable and nature-friendly consumption through various research and development projects that BfN supports in close cooperation with the German Environment Ministry. Bettina Hedden-Dunkhorst holds a doctorate in agricultural economics.
Dr Kojwang’s professional career started in academia where he spent 5 years teaching at Moi University in Kenya (1989 - 1994), before transitioning into a public service post as Director of Forestry in Namibia from 1994 and 2001.Thereafter, he joined the Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF) as Regional Representative for Southern Africa (2001 to 2009). After his stint in WWF, he pursued a successful consulting career for 10 years with various national, regional and international organizations, before joining the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) as an Africa Regional Director in 2019, then from 2023 as a Senior Affairs & Engagement Advisor for FSC International.
Taye is a conservation scientist with over 40 years of international experience working in the biodiversity conservation and sustainable development sectors across Africa, Canada and the USA with additional exposures to Europe, Asia and Latin America. With a Ph.D in Zoology, he has worked for governments, Academic institutions as well as large international NGOs at a Senior Executive level. He has extensive experience working with the Multi-Lateral Environmental Agreements such as CBD, CITES, CMS, UNFCCC, UNCCD and the Ramsar Convection. He has been with TRAFFIC since 2016 working as the Policy and Partnership Coordinator for Africa. Currently, Taye oversees TRAFFIC’s work across Africa as the acting Senior Regional Director.
Jan Christian Polanía Giese is a Senior Manager and heads the Sustainable Consumption team with Lena Domröse. Their work enables scientifically sound consumption policy and supports this through specific implementation projects involving a wide range of stakeholder groups. For Jan Christian, the design and application of effective instruments to inform consumers about sustainable consumption patterns and lifestyles is critical, particularly in an e-Commerce setting. His geographical scope is national as well as global. “Consumption-oriented sustainability policy cannot replace production-related regulatory measures, but rather supplement them in a variety of ways. Through my interdisciplinary work at adelphi, I keep an eye on the wishes and needs of citizens and can help prepare the ground for the urgently needed, profound changes to our lifestyles.”
Martina Fleckenstein is the Global Policy Director of the Food Practice for WWF International. Martina has more than 25 years of experience in national and international environment and development policy and has many years of expertise in implementing projects related to sustainable land use and agri-food systems in different geographies.