Summary for Palestine
the Applied Research Institute- Jerusalem (ARIJ)
18th October 2012
World Wide Views on Biodiversity (WWViews on Biodiversity) is a global democratic deliberation on biodiversity. It gathered citizen views on international biodiversity policy issues and disseminated them to policymakers involved in the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). It is the second of its kind (the first was on global warming in 2009) and part of efforts to close a widening democratic gap between citizens and policymakers as policymaking grows increasingly global in scale.
The WWViews on Biodiversity citizen consultation is part of the UN Decade on Biodiversity and a step towards reaching Aichi Biodiversity Target 1 of the Convention on Biological Diversity’s Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020, which includes making people aware of the values of biodiversity. World Wide Views on Biodiversity aims to involve citizens around the world in the design of global biodiversity policy and to understand perspectives on biodiversity from young people and adults all over the world. By introducing the views of citizens into these discussions, policymakers will have a better basis for making decisions that are in tune with informed public opinion.
WWViews on Biodiversity involved 3,000 citizens in 25 countries spanning five continents (See Below). The citizens gathered in their countries on September 15th, 2012 to discuss some of the core issues at stake in the ongoing, international discussions and negotiations on how to stop the decline in biodiversity and fulfill the Global Strategic Plan for doing so. They received balanced information about biodiversity, discussed the issues with fellow citizens, and voted individually on the questions presented to them. The results of the citizens’ votes were collected on the WWViews website, where it is possible to compare the results from different countries and continents. The results will be presented at COP11 (CBD-Conference of Parties number 11) in India in October 2012 and will give decision-makers a unique opportunity to get an insight into the views and perspectives of citizens worldwide on biodiversity policies.
The Applied Research Institute – Jerusalem (ARIJ) is the national partner representing the Palestinian Territory in the WWViews project. ARIJ, in cooperation with the Palestinian Ministry of Environment (MoE), prepared and conducted the consultation event on September 15th 2012 in the Palestinian Territory (PT) and reported the Palestinian voting results to the DBT – WWViews project coordinator and COP 11 Palestinian delegates. Relevant Palestinian organizations worked with ARIJ on facilitating the WWViews event day including the Biodiversity and Environment Research Center (BERC), the National Agriculture Research Center (NARC), the International Center for Agricultural Research in Dry Land Areas (ICARDA), the Land Reclamation Centre (LRC), the Economic and Social Development Centre of Palestine (ESDC), and Al Quds University. On the event on 15th September 2012, 104 Palestinians participated from the all over the West Bank Governorates; representing the different geographical areas, gender, age groups, education levels, and occupation.
The results from the Palestinian citizens’ consultation on biodiversity were compatible with the results of the global consultation event, showing strong public support for taking further political action in order to halt the decline in biodiversity. The WWViews citizens expressed great concern over the loss of biodiversity and this concern is clearly reflected in the support for protective measures at the expense of economic aims. There is widespread willingness to share the costs of biodiversity protection although citizens also believed that developed countries should make larger financial contributions than developing countries. There is general support for expanding international biodiversity regulation and therefore the extent to which burdens and benefits are shared.
World Wide Views on Biodiversity Voting Results