No-Go Motion 026

MOTION 026 Adopted by IUCN World Conservation Congress on 9 September 2016

Protected areas and other areas important for biodiversity in relation to environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure development

NOTING that we share a universal responsibility for protecting Earth’s vitality, variety and beauty;

RECALLING the following Resolutions and Recommendations, which address the negative impacts of environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure development projects in, on, or otherwise affecting protected areas: Resolution 1.51 Indigenous Peoples, Mineral and Oil Extraction, Infrastructure and Development Works (Montreal, 1996), Resolution 2.34 Multilateral and bilateral financial institutions and projects impacting on biodiversity and natural features (Amman 2000), Recommendation 2.82 Protection and conservation of biological diversity of protected areas from the negative impacts of mining and exploration (Amman, 2000), Recommendation 3.087 Financial institutions and the World Commission on Dams recommendations (Bangkok, 2004), Recommendation 4.087 Impacts of infrastructure and extractive industries on protected areas (Barcelona, 2008), Resolution 4.088 Establishing the IUCN Extractive Industry Responsibility Initiative (Barcelona, 2008) and Recommendation 4.136 Biodiversity, protected areas, indigenous people and mining activities (Barcelona, 2008);

RECALLING relevant recommendations of the IUCN World Parks Congress 2014, including the call to apply “no-go” policies to priority conservation sites for environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure, the recommendation that protected areas should progress and not regress, and that a step increase is necessary in the scale of protected area investment to deliver conservation goals;

RECALLING the request by IUCN members “to assert ‘No-Go Areas’ for mining and other extractive industries and destructive activities threatening World Heritage Sites, and protected areas, including ICCAs and sacred natural sites and territories” (Plenary Resolution #12, 10th World Wilderness Congress, 2013);

RECOGNISING that there are six IUCN Protected Areas Management Categories and four Governance Types[i] and these identify activities and infrastructure consistent with IUCN’s Guidelines for Applying Protected Area Management Categories;

RECOGNISING that the concept of areas being “no-go”, or off-limits, to environmentally damaging industrial activities, including mining, oil and gas, and agriculture, and environmentally damaging infrastructure, such as dams, roads and pipelines, is integral to conservation policy for protected areas and other sites of known importance for biodiversity and ecosystem services;

RECOGNISING the adoption of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and its Aichi Biodiversity Targets, and the findings of Global Biodiversity Outlook 4 that the loss of biodiversity continues despite these efforts;

ALSO RECOGNISING the adoption in 2015 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and the essential role that protected areas and other areas of particular importance for biodiversity continue to play in achieving many of these goals;

FURTHER RECOGNISING the 2015 Paris Agreement on Climate Change, and the essential part played by protected areas and other effective area-based conservation measures to achieve climate change adaptation and mitigation;

ACKNOWLEDGING the decisions of the World Heritage Committee that environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure developments are incompatible with World Heritage status, and the responsibility of States Parties to avoid negative impacts on World Heritage Sites from such activities outside their boundaries (e.g. Decisions 39COM7A.4 and 34COM7A.2);

CONCERNED by the continued rapid growth of environmentally damaging industrial activity and infrastructure development that causes irreparable damage, and that impacts directly or indirectly on protected areas and other areas of particular importance for the conservation of biodiversity identified as essential to achieving the Aichi Targets;

RECOGNISING the development of conservation-based business practices, including International Finance Corporation Performance Standard 6 on Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Management of Living Natural Resources; and

STRESSING that many governments still do not have adequate laws, policies and measures in place to ensure the integrity of protected areas, as well as other areas of particular importance for the conservation of biodiversity or ecosystem services essential to achieving the Aichi Targets, so that they are not compromised by environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure development;

[i] Dudley, N. (Editor) (2008). Guidelines for Applying Protected Area Management Categories. Gland, Switzerland: IUCN. x + 86pp. http://data.iucn.org/dbtw-wpd/edocs/PAPS- 016.pdf

The World Conservation Congress, at its session in Hawai‘i, United States of America, 1-10 September 2016:

  1. REAFFIRMS the six IUCN Protected Area Management Categories and four Governance Types (Resolution 035 Facilitating protection through the establishment of protected areas as specified by Target 11 of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011–2020, Jeju, 2012) and the importance and relevance of IUCN’s existing resolutions and recommendations regarding environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure projects located in, around or otherwise negatively affecting any protected areas;
  1. RECOGNISES that environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure impede achievement of the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020 and the Aichi Targets, as well as the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals;
  1. CALLS ON governments to prohibit environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure development in all IUCN categories of protected area, and to take measures to ensure that all activities are compatible with the conservation objectives of these areas, through appropriate, transparent and rigorous pre-emptive appraisal processes, such as international best practice environmental and social impact assessments, strategic environmental assessments, and appropriate regulation;
  1. FURTHER CALLS ON governments, decision makers, community and private landowners to give high priority to avoiding environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure development that impact sacred natural sites and territories and areas conserved by indigenous peoples and local communities (ICCAs), noting the ICCA Registry maintained by the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre. The aim is to ensure that all activities are compatible with the conservation outcomes of these areas through appropriate, transparent and rigorous pre- emptive appraisal processes, such as international best practice environmental and social impact assessments, and via free, prior and informed consent, in line with the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples;
  1. CALLS ON governments not to de-gazette, downgrade or alter the boundaries of all categories of protected areas to facilitate environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure development;
  1. CALLS ON governments and relevant authorities when preparing development plans and plans for infrastructure, to adopt and implement policies that restrict environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure development that may have negative impacts on protected areas, or on any areas of particular importance for biodiversity and ecosystem services that are identified by governments as essential to achieving the Aichi Targets;
  1. CALLS ON the business community to respect all categories of protected areas as “no-go” areas for environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure development, to withdraw from those activities in these areas, and not to conduct future activities in protected areas; and
  1. URGES companies, public sector bodies, financial institutions (including development banks), relevant certification bodies and relevant industry groups to not conduct, invest in or fund environmentally damaging industrial activities and infrastructure development within, or that negatively impact protected areas or any areas of particular importance for biodiversity and ecosystem services that are identified by governments as essential to achieving the Aichi Targets, and to make public commitments to this