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Accelerating action around land for enhanced climate action

The Commonwealth Secretariat and the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification are organising a high-level side event in the margins of the United Nations General Assembly.

The event will be an opportunity for member nations of the Commonwealth to explore new ways to deliver ambitious, coordinated and accelerated action that will help achieve a land-degradation neutral world and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and support the Paris Agreement on climate change.

This event aims to:

  • Showcase how climate vulnerable member countries are responding to land degradation, biodiversity loss and climate change.
  • Identify options for joint action and synergy among Commonwealth members and the Rio Conventions.
  • Forge a positive, action-based agenda in support of nature-based solutions in the run-up to the ‘Super Year for Nature’, which includes key global summits such as the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (June 2021), United Nations Biodiversity Conference, CBD COP15 (May 2021) and United Nations Climate Change Conference, COP26 (November 2021).

Watch the highlights video


Opening remarks

  • Commonwealth Secretary-General, Patricia Scotland
  • United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) Executive Secretary, Ibrahim Thiaw

Keynote address

  • UN Special Adviser and Assistant Secretary General for Climate Action, Selwin Hart (Keynote Speaker)

High-level panel

  • Minister of Environment of Namibia, Pohamba Penomwenyo Shifeta
  • Minister of Environment of Nigeria, Mohammad Mahmood Abubakar
  • Minister-in-Charge of Climate Change of Pakistan, Malik Amin Aslam
  • Minister for Economic Development, Housing, Urban Renewal, Transport and Civil of St Lucia, Herod Stanislas
  • Deputy Minister of Environment, Forest and Climate Change of Bangladesh, Begum Habibun Nahar
  • Minister of Environment and Tourism of Rwanda, Jeanne d'Arc Mujawamariya


  • Minister of State for the Environment and the Pacific of the United Kingdom, Zac Goldsmith
  • United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (UNCBD) Executive Secretary, Elizabeth Mrema
  • United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Executive Secretary, Patricia Espinosa

Moderated by Ruth Kattumuri, Senior Director - Economic, Youth and Sustainable Development Division, Commonwealth Secretariat.

For more information, please contact: [email protected]

Photo: IRRI. Creative Commons CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 (cropped).