The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) entered into force on 29 December 1993. It has 3 main objectives:
- The conservation of biological diversity
- The sustainable use of the components of biological diversity
- The fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources
The Conference of the Parties is the governing body of the Convention, and advances implementation of the Convention through the decisions it takes at its periodic meetings.
To date the Conference of the Parties has held 14 ordinary meetings, and one extraordinary meeting (the latter, to adopt the Biosafety Protocol, was held in two parts). From 1994 to 1996, the Conference of the Parties held its ordinary meetings annually. Since then these meetings have been held somewhat less frequently and, following a change in the rules of procedure in 2000, will now be held every two years.
The Fifteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 15) has been organised in two phaes, one virtual and a second one in Montreal, Canada. Phase one took place virtually, from 11 to 15 October 2021 and will include a High-Level Segment from 12 to 13 October. Phase two will be an in-person meeting in Montreal, Canada, from 7 to 19 December 2022.