International Day for Biodiversity 2024: Message from CITES Secretary-General Ivonne Higuero

Updated on 22 May 2024


International Day for Biodiversity 2024

Message from CITES Secretary-General Ivonne Higuero

22 May 2024


Happy International Day for Biological Diversity!

This year we celebrate biodiversity under the theme "Be Part of the Plan," which resonates deeply with the work we've been undertaking at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (or CITES). 

CITES ensures that international trade in endangered species is conducted sustainably, legally, and in a traceable manner. This is achieved through key partnerships, a science-driven regulatory framework and enforcement mechanisms. CITES’ 184 Parties engage with observer organisations, academia, youth, and indigenous peoples to ensure the legal wildlife trade is sustainable and develop tools to combat illegal trade in wildlife. 

Our planet is facing evolving challenges, from climate change to habitat loss to wildlife crime and overexploitation. Yet there are great opportunities for synergy and innovation in conserving our natural heritage for generations to come. 

The Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework adopted by the Convention on Biological Diversity is a plan where all environmental treaties can contribute to its objectives. 

Two targets in particular underscore CITES commitment to life on Earth. Target 5 emphasizes ensuring sustainable, safe, and legal harvesting and trade of wild species. This includes preventing overexploitation and reducing the risk of pathogen spillover. Target 9 focuses on managing wild species sustainably to benefit people. This includes economically, environmentally and in harmony with the customary sustainable use by indigenous peoples and local communities. 

Our efforts can only succeed with the active participation of each and every one of you. Whether you are a government official, a conservationist, a business leader, a youth or a nature lover like me, join us this International Day for Biological Diversity. Be a part of the plan to build a future of prosperity for biodiversity, for all life on Earth!