Explanation of Position by Courtney Nemroff, Counsellor, U.S. Mission to the UN, on a UN General Assembly Resolution Titled, "Report of the Governing Council of the United Nations Environment Programme on its Eleventh Special Session"

Courtney Nemroff, Counsellor, U.S. Mission to the UN
New York, NY
December 1, 2010


A decision to endorse the establishment of an Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystems Services was high among U.S. priorities for this year’s Second Committee. We believe that the IPBES is such an important issue that it deserved a resolution of its own. However, we welcome language on IPBES in the UNEP resolution. This language clearly endorses the establishment of an IPBES and provides guidance on next steps consistent with governments' agreement, as reflected in the Busan Outcome.

As we have consistently noted throughout these negotiations, we believe the principles contained in the Busan Outcome are the best guidance for the development of IPBES. IPBES is, first and foremost, a scientific entity under the direction of experts. To be credible, IPBES must adhere to basic scientific tenets, as set out in the Busan Outcome. Further, relevant international organizations, notably UNEP, UNDP, FAO, and UNESCO, should all be engaged in the development of IPBES, according to their comparative expertise.

We welcome broad participation in the governmental meeting to determine “modalities and institutional arrangements” for IPBES. It is our clear understanding that funds for participation will not come from UNEP’s Environment Fund.


PRN: 2010/302