Looking ahead

Our current work to date, together with our planned outputs, will seek to provide ideas for several high level political events.

First, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA 74), due to be hosted in New York later this year, will include a high-profile Climate Summit and a High-level Political Forum on Sustainable Development.

Second, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Conference of Parties (COP) 15 will be in China in 2020. In advance of this, the UK Government is pushing for a high-ambition global biodiversity deal – a new Paris Agreement for biodiversity.

Finally, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) COP 2020 that will most likely be hosted jointly by the UK and Italy. For this, the UK Government is looking to champion nature-based solutions – especially afforestation and the restoration of natural carbon-rich habitats like mangroves - through diplomacy and UK Official Development Assistance (ODA).

On top of these major events, if and when the UK leaves the EU, the Government will be prioritising the signing of new Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) with countries around the world. It will be critical to provide evidence and encouragement for the UK Government to enhance environment standards through them, in a context where there will be strong incentives and voices for diluting such standards. On domestic conservation, the Department for Environmental, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) is busy formulating post-Brexit legislation: the Environment Bill and Agriculture Bill.