COP14 on United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification
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New Delhi is going to host COP14 on United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification(UNCCD) in which the representatives of the different countries will take part. Over 3,000 participants from all over the world are expected to participate in COP14 (Conference of Parties).

The Parties to the Convention will agree on the actions each will take over the next two years and beyond to get on a sustainable development path.

What is UNCCD & COP

UNCCD is the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification and COP is the Conference of Parties – working together of different nations in order to achieve the target of UNCCD at the regional level.

UNCCD is the most comprehensive global commitment to achieve Land Degradation Neutrality (LDN) in order to restore the productivity of vast expanses of degraded land, improve the livelihoods of more than 1.3 billion people, and reduce the impacts of drought on vulnerable populations to build

History of UNCCD

In 1992, The Rio Conference called on the United Nations General Assembly to establish an Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INCD) to prepare, by June 1994, a Convention to Combat Desertification, particularly in Africa.

The Convention was adopted in Paris on 17 June 1994 and entered into force on 26 December 1996. The Conference of the Parties (COP), which is the Convention’s supreme governing body, held its first session in October 1997 in Rome, Italy.

At UNCCD COP13 that took place on September 2017 in Ordos, China, the countries have agreed on a new global roadmap to address land degradation.

The Objectives of UNCCD

The main objective of UNCCD are:-

  1. to avoid, minimize, and reverse desertification/land degradation and mitigates the effects of drought in affected areas at all levels,
  2. to achieve a land degradation-neutral world consistent with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The Convention’s 197 parties work together to improve the living conditions for people in drylands, to maintain and restore land and soil productivity, and to mitigate the effects of drought.

The UNCCD is particularly committed to a bottom-up approach, encouraging the participation of local people in combating desertification and land degradation.

The UNCCD secretariat facilitates cooperation between developed and developing countries, particularly around knowledge and technology transfer for sustainable land management.

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The Headquarter of UNCCD

The permanent secretariat of the Convention was established in Article 23 of the UNCCD. It has been located in Bonn, Germany since January 1999.

In line with Article 23 of the UNCCD, the key function of the secretariat is to service the sessions of the COP and its subsidiary bodies. This includes a multitude of tasks, ranging from the preparation of substantive documentation to logistical arrangements for the sessions.

The role of regions under the UNCCD

The implementation of the UNCCD is organized around the Five world regions – Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), Northern Mediterranean, Central, and Eastern Europe.

The Convention Text includes five annexes, which each concern one of these world regions. The annexes specify how the Convention will be implemented for each region and set the focus and content of regional and subregional action programs.

These action programs provide a framework for regional coordination and collaboration. Though the country Parties of the regions define together how the UNCCD will be implemented, most action takes place at the national level.

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