Nexus Area: Climate and Biodiversity

Nexus Area: Climate and Biodiversity

Climate change and biodiversity have been named as twin-crises, and it has become increasingly evident that climate change and biodiversity are interrelated. Climate change is expected to be the main driver of biodiversity loss by the end of the century, and it is expected to cause significant disturbances to ecosystems. It has already altered ecosystems, species loss, and increased diseases. This threatens the economy, food security, medicine availability, water quality, and more. The climate and biodiversity nexus is therefore an area of increasing interest where additional support and guidance would be beneficial for both newcomers and more experienced SAIs and auditors.

At the same time, biodiversity loss can further accelerate climate change and undermines nature’s ability to regulate greenhouse gas emissions and protect against extreme weather events. On the other hand, mitigating climate change can help to conserve biodiversity, while protecting biodiversity and/or reversing biodiversity loss can help to mitigate climate change. Nature-based solutions, such as conserving or restoring habitats can remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, thus helping to address climate change by storing carbon. Addressing this nexus will require coordinated, global efforts as well as national and local action.

Although there are policies and international regimes that address climate change and biodiversity, there is a lack of policies that address these issues simultaneously. Many countries have made commitments nationally and internationally and allocated funding to these issues. Performance audit can help determine if countries are meeting these commitments and support continual improvement. Therefore, it is important that future audit criteria on these issues are designed in a way that does not exclude climate change or biodiversity but understands the fundamental interconnections between these crises.

This project aims to increase awareness and understanding of the interconnectedness of biodiversity and climate change among SAIs and the key stakeholders from the international organisations ranging from the UN to regional NGOs. The key outputs include a literature review on nexus area, a webinar and brief video presentations. The key publication will also include an elaborated list of criteria, tested in different types of environmental contexts. These criteria would help auditors to consider in an audit on climate change also the impacts of climate measures on the biodiversity. The main methodological development will be connected to systems change. A systems approach also enables integrating besides climate and biodiversity further areas into consideration, such as water or soils.


Project Lead:

SAI Canada

Project Group

SAIs of Czech Republic, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, Maldives, and Morocco

Main Goal

Enhanced awareness and understanding of the environmental auditors, SAIs and other key stakeholders on the interconnectedness of biodiversity and climate change.

Key Outcomes: 

  • Literature review on the nexus area: biodiversity and climate
  • Research report on nexus dynamics from SDGs perspective, inc. i.e. (background, links with other WGEA work, systems thinking and policy coherence, list of audit criteria and questions, case studies of audits, available tools, relevant sources of information)
  • Webinar with an expert panel in the nexus area of biodiversity and climate

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