Tibet’s biodiversity challenges provide insights that can help shape a practical, inclusive and accountable Global Biodiversity Framework, the International Campaign for Tibet says in a new briefing paper.

The paper, titled “Tibet-informed recommendations for the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework,” goes into detail about the environmental dangers facing Tibet, which supports some of the greatest biological diversity in the world but is warming nearly three times faster than the global average.

The paper also provides general and specific recommendations for the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, which the countries that are party to the Convention on Biological Diversity are currently negotiating.

The parties expect to complete the framework in October in Kunming, China.

Environmental destruction in Tibet

China annexed Tibet in 1959 and continues to rule over the historically independent country in the Himalayan region with repressive and totalitarian policies.

As ICT’s briefing paper notes, China’s policies in Tibet are making climate change worse, with the Chinese government allowing unchecked infrastructure development and excluding Tibetans from the management of their own land.

This is despite the fact that Tibetans’ knowledge of the local terrain and their traditional beliefs in living nonviolently and harmoniously with the environment make them ideal stewards of the ecosystem.

The environmental destruction in Tibet will impact the wider world, as Tibet is home to more than 45,000 glaciers and provides water to more than 1 billion people in Asia.

ICT recommendations

ICT advocates for a rights-based approach to environmental management in Tibet will empower the Tibetan people and allow the Tibetan plateau to continue supporting biodiversity and serving as one of the world’s most vital ecosystems.

Based on the lessons learned from Tibet, ICT’s briefing paper provides recommendations for the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework, including paying more attention to the drivers of biodiversity loss, fostering diverse visions of a good quality of life and more.