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Why does biodiversity, focusing on forest and grassland ecosystems, matter?

Biodiversity underpins the ecosystem processes and functions that provide critical services to society. In turn actions that help conserve, restore or sustainably make use of biodiversity and ecosystems can provide adaptation benefits while also contributing to multiple facets of sustainable development. These include climate change mitigation, disaster risk reduction, and the maintenance of essential ecosystem services.

Forest and grassland ecosystems provide floodwater retention and slope stabilization and serve as windbreaks, while also providing food, fodder and innumerable recreational and cultural services. Actions to restore and conserve forest and grassland biodiversity and ecosystems also provide co-benefits to human health and well-being, including reducing the risk of disease transmission by reducing contact and the exchange of pathogens between humans and wildlife.

Closing knowledge gaps through partnership with the NWP expert group on biodiversity

Biodiversity, including forests and grasslands, is one of the priority areas under the Nairobi Work Programme (NWP) as mandated by SBSTA 48 and SBSTA 50. In response to the mandates provided to the NWP, twenty-five expert organizations were invited to join thethematic expert group on forest and grassland biodiversity and climate change adaptation

The knowledge-to-action methodology

The NWP uses a knowledge-to-action methodology (see figure below) that guides knowledge co-development through partnerships. This collaborative approach responds to the adaptation needs of Parties, with an emphasis on developing countries, and supports the formulation of national adaptation plans and relevant mandates of UNFCCC constituted bodies. The approach has been refined over the years incorporating lessons learned.​


​Steps ​Activities Outputs
​1) Scoping
  • Draft an initial paper to review and synthesize existing knowledge on biodiversity and climate change adaptation, with an emphasis on forest and grassland ecosystems
​2) Engage with expert groups
  • ​Form an expert group on biodiversity and climate change
  • Convene the first expert group meeting in July 2020 to examine knowledge gaps to address strategies to better integrate biodiversity and ecosystems into adaptation planning
​3) Refinde knowledge
  • Develop a draft scoping paper with technical guidance from the expert groups and constituted bodies
  • Organize a webinar to showcase findings from the draft scoping paper 
​4) Co-design actions
  • Convene the second meeting of the expert group, including constituted bodies to co-design and implement collaborative actions to address identified knowledge gaps
​5) Report and disseminate findings
​6) Facilitate partnerships to mobilize support
  • Publish the summary report of the 14th Focal Point Forum on biodiversity and climate change adaptation​ 
​7) Implementing action (more details)

Next steps

​Timeline ​Action

​Until end-of 2023 ​Strengthening Capacity for Long-Term Monitoring, Evaluation & Learning for Ecosystem-based Adaptation. To be published in 2023

Find out more​ & get involved 

  • Learn more​ about our collaborative actions and be part of the solutions.​

  • Share your knowledge resources on biodiversity and climate change adaptation with a focus on forests and grassland ecosystems on the Adaptation Knowledge Portal including case studiestools and methods, and other resources

  • Make an action pledge to support adaptation planning and implementation related to oceans and climate change adaptation

  • Send us news about upcoming publications and events at

  • Become a NWP partner organization​