MUSCAT: The Sultanate, represented by the Environment Authority, has submitted its sixth national report on biodiversity to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (UNCBD), within the framework of the national reporting on biodiversity status in the Sultanate which is considered among the basic obligations that should be met by the member states routinely every two or three years.
In comments to Oman News Agency (ONA), Engineer Saleh bin Nagmoosh al Saadi, Director of Biodiversity Department at the Environment Authority, said that this report is one of the tools used for evaluating progress in the implementation of the national goals and International Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. He noted that such reports are considered as one of the mechanisms for measuring success and challenges facing countries in the implementation of their national plans and programmes for biodiversity and help them identify the scientific and technical needs and build their capacities.
Al Saadi added that the Sultanate submitted its first report to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity in 1998, after joining the convention on December 7, 1994 as per the Royal Decree No 119/94. All previous reports focused on the implementation of the national goals and global strategic plans prepared every 10 years by the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity and are adopted by member states through the Conferences of the Parties.
The officials stressed that Oman Vision 2040 addressed the axis of environmental protection and the preservation of natural resources as one of the government’s priorities which aims to achieve sustainable development goals and protect people from harmful environmental effects, generate economic opportunities through benefitting from the environment and effectively managing the environment. He noted that among the most important objectives of the biodiversity axis from the strategic perspective of the vision is the optimal and balanced use of natural resources and their sustainability in support of energy security and the national economy and reaching food and water security based on renewable resources and advanced technologies and the optimal utilization of the strategic location and biodiversity of the Sultanate.
As for the adoption of the national goals related to the conservation of biodiversity and the preservation of natural resources, Al Saadi said that the draft national strategy and the biodiversity action plan for the Sultanate has been finalized in accordance with the International Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. However, owing to the CBD’s trend during this year or next year to adopt a new ten-year strategic plan (the post-2020 global strategic plan), in addition to the Environment Authority’s trend to develop Oman’s environmental strategy, the Authority decided to include all national strategies and plans concerned with the environment into a single framework. He added that a national plan for biodiversity is devised every 10 years and that the next national plan will be prepared in line with the framework of the post-2020 global strategic plan for biodiversity. — ONA