The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) was signed in 1992 at the 1992
UN Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro and ratified
The CBD is a comprehensive, binding agreement covering the use and conservation
of biodiversity. It requires countries to develop and implement strategies for
sustainable use and protection of biodiversity, and provides a forum for continuing
international dialogue on biodiversity-related issues through the annual conferences
of the parties (COPs).
The Jakarta mandate
But the 1992 document contained no specific article on marine and coastal biodiversity.
Instead the 1995 Conference of the Parties dealt with these issues in two decisions.
One (II10) was a policy decision now known as the Jakarta Mandate
on the Conservation and Sustainable Use of Marine and Coastal Biological Diversity
containing basic principles and thematic areas. These provisions
were to be implemented through a multi-year programme of work described in the
second decision (IV5).
The Regional Seas Conventions and Action Plans are considered to have a major
role to play in the promotion of the Jakarta Mandate at the regional level.
The CBD already enjoys close cooperation with the Cartagena Convention in the
Caribbean and the Permanent Commission for the South Pacific (CPPS) in the South-East
Pacific. Negotiations are under way with other regional bodies, such as the
Regional Organization for the Conservation of the Environment of the Red Sea
and the Gulf of Aden (PERSGA), the Regional Organization for the Protection
of the Marine Environment (ROPME) and the Regional Coordinating Unit for the
East Asian Seas Action Plan (EAS/RCU).
The regional programmes also have much to contribute to the CBD work programme
as it relates to guidelines on integrated marine and coastal area management,
criteria for protected marine and coastal area establishment and management
and guidelines for ecosystem evaluation, including indicators.
Visit the website of the Convention on Biological
Read more discussion about biodiversity conservation and the CBD on the website
of the Caribbean
The CBD builds on the Law of the Sea Convention by extending protection to
biodiversity located within the 12-mile limit zones areas not directly protected
under the LOS provisions.