Regional observatories in Africa, Caribbean and Pacific in support of the Global Biodiversity Framework implementation

1 February 2023

BIOPAMA hosted a side event at the CBD COP 15 to raise awareness about existing operational structures that can act as “regional cooperation support centres” in support of the implementation of the new targets adopted in the post 2020 Framework. Testimonials and support from CBD Parties (Ethiopia, Samoa, Guinee, Belize), intergovernmental regional organisations (COMIFAC, SPREP and the EU) and the CBD Secretariat demonstrated the value of the five regional observatories in supporting CBD Parties achieve their commitments.

About the BIOPAMA-established regional observatories

The BIOPAMA-established regional observatories support collation of data on protected and conserved areas and biodiversity, which can make a direct contribution to the monitoring of the Global Biodiversity Framework. For Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific, these regional observatories are ideally placed to be advanced options for establishing the proposed “regional cooperation support centers”.

Mandated by regional organizations, BIOPAMA has established five regional centres for biodiversity and protected areas management or “regional observatories” that serve 79 countries in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific regions. These are:

  • Caribbean Protected Areas Gateway (CPAG),
  • Regional Observatory for Biodiversity and Protected Areas in West Africa (OBAPAO), hosted by the CSE Consortium under the WAEMU institutional lead,
  • Central Africa Forest Observatory (OFAC) hosted by the Commission of Central Africa Forests (COMIFAC),
  • Regional Resource Hub (RRH) hosted by the Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD), and
  • Pacific Islands Protected Area Portal hosted by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP).

The mission of these regional centers includes:

  • Information and knowledge management: data collection, current and complete data, analysis, monitoring and reporting;
  • capacity development for staff and organizations to manage this information and provide policy guidance for better decision making on biodiversity conservation; and
  • networking and communication.

These Regional Observatories help to achieve:

  • Improved decision-making at local and national levels by collating and managing high quality and verified biodiversity datasets and information.
  • An open-data practice as a global resource by making these data and information available freely and by promoting and encouraging their use.
  • Effective tracking of progress against global, regional and national biodiversity goals such as the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020, progress towards the Aichi Targets and the Sustainable Development Goals, and the forthcoming Global Biodiversity Framework.


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