Two years ago, ISO convened a group of international experts to develop standards on biodiversity. According to Caroline Lhuillery from the French national standards body AFNOR and the manager for the group, “the desire is to turn the tables to create a healthier relationship between our economies and our ecosystems, a relationship that encourages the preservation of biodiversity while creating opportunities for sustainable development.”
While there has been a growing number of national and proprietary standards for biodiversity, these and scientific knowledge – as well as global needs – have now evolved to the point where international harmonization would be highly beneficial.
One of the many aims of the standards ISO is creating is to support the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), developed by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and intended to provide a foundation for protecting the diversity of life on Earth. Sadly, most news about biodiversity speaks of declines. Yet standards are already playing a part in protecting and enhancing biodiversity and ISO’s role in this field will grow rapidly.
Nature’s dangerous decline
Biodiversity embraces all life. Without it, there is no food, clean air, natural resources such as wood, nature-based flood defences and a viable climate. The CBD has three core objectives to help achieve this. These are the conservation of biological diversity, its sustainable use, and a fair, equitable sharing of the benefits of genetic resources.
Biodiversity embraces all life.