To address the issues of land degradation and desertification, for the first time, India will host the 14th session of the Conference of Parties (COP-14) of United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) in September 2019. It will be held between September 2 and 13, 2019 at the India Expo Center and Mart, New Delhi. COP-14 will review the reports submitted by COP to convention and look into the details like how they carry out their commitments.
i. The conference will be hosted by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change of India.
ii. 5,000 delegates from nearly 197 countries will be participating in the event.
iii. India will take over the COP presidency from China for the next two years till 2021 until the next COP. Last Conference was held from 6-16 September 2017 in Ordos in the People’s Republic of China.
iv. The 3 major Conventions of the United Nations (UN) are UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and UNCCD.
Flagship Project of India:
i. Ahead of COP-14 Union Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change (MoEFCC) Prakash Javadekar launched a flagship project. It is a part of a larger international initiative ‘Bonn Challenge’. It will increase India’s capacity for Forest Landscape Restoration (FLR).
ii. The project is implemented by MoEFCC in partnership with the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
iii. During the pilot phase of the project, initial 3.5 years, it will be implemented in Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Nagaland and Karnataka. It is aimed to develop and adapt best practices and monitor protocols for country, and build capacity .
About ‘Bonn Challenge’:
i. It is a global effort to bring 150 million hectares of the world’s degraded and deforested land under restoration by the year 2020 and 350 million hectares by 2030.
ii. India had joined the voluntary Bonn Challenge pledge at COP-13 (2015) in Paris. It had committed to restore 13 million hectares (MH) of degraded and deforested land by 2020, and an additional 8 million hectares (MH) by 2030. It is one of the largest pledges in Asia.
♦ Headquarters: Bonn, Germany
♦ Parties: 197 (196 States + European Union)