Health Day at the 2018 UN Biodiversity Conference


Woman in a Field

Session 1: Creating healthy and resilient societies: Local Perspectives

Healthy ecosystems and bio-cultural diversity nurture life on Earth and enhance human health and well-being. The relevance of biodiversity and traditional knowledge to modern health care delivery is evident in the diverse community based practices that sustainably manage natural resources to support healthier, more resilient communities. The relevance of access to health care of communities in economically disadvantaged and/or relatively isolated regions of the world is fundamentally connected to their very survival. Use of biodiversity and ecological resources to support community health has been developed in different bio-cultural ecosystems in communities around the globe.

Session 2: Harnessing local and national commitments to achieve Planetary Health

Mainstreaming biodiversity and health for sustainable development requires collaboration across all levels of governance and sectors of society. Drawing on recent examples led by partners at the local, national and regional levels, partners will present innovative cross-sectoral work undertaken to bridge the science-policy gap at the intersection of global environmental changes and human health and stimulate discussion on approaches and modalities for building a community of practice for biodiversity and health to support the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity, the Sustainable Development Goals and 2030 agenda for sustainable development.

Garden in Sydney

Session 3: Official launch of the Healthy Urban Microbiome Initiative and 2020 Challenge!

Green spaces have long been thought healthy places within stressful urban environments that are restorative of human health. These urban oases range from remnant natural vegetation to community-inspired urban food gardens that contain a broad range of macro-biodiversity, but poorly studied microbiomes. This event will launch an innovative new 2020 challenge aimed at bringing together 20 cities from 20 countries by COP 15 in 2020.

Session 4: Healthy Food Systems for a Sustainable Future

Feeding the world sustainably while protecting biodiversity and promoting good nutrition is one of the greatest challenges of our time. Climate and environmental changes further threaten ecosystems resilience, health and food security and nutrition of millions of the most vulnerable populations. Food and nutrition security are intimately interconnected with biodiversity and the health of our ecosystems and there are many co-benefits to transforming the global food system through innovative partnerships, sustainable practices and healthy diets. These will be explored in the context of the SDGs.

Produce Market

Session 5: Linking public health and ecosystem approaches for the prevention of infectious diseases

The operationalization of integrative approaches such as One Health have successfully engaged different sectors to jointly address challenges associated with land use change, ecosystem degradation, and disease emergence. Opportunities, best practices and tools to strengthen cross-sectoral integration & support will be presented.

Session 6: A Post-2020 Biodiversity Framework for a healthy and resilient future

This closing session brought together leaders from the international community to provide insights on how countries and partners can meaningfully contribute to the dialogue on the post-2020 global biodiversity framework, to ensure key issues at the intersection of biodiversity and health are well-embedded and aligned with global commitments for sustainable development, including the Sustainable Development Goals and 2030 agenda for Sustainable development.


Session 6: The Post-2020 Biodiversity Framework for healthy and resilient societies

From L-R: Jamison Ervin, UNDP; Verónica Ruíz García, IUCN

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With gratitude

Health Day 2018 would not have been possible without the presence of numerous institutional partners and participants.

We also wish to acknowledge, with gratitude, Indigenous and local community participants and government representatives from Kenya, Liberia, Finland, Philippines, Sri Lanka, Turkey and the United Kingdom who shared their national experiences on our Health Day panels and in side events convened under the CBD-WHO joint work programme.

©2018 Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity.
CBD-WHO joint work programme on biodiversity and health

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