Aspen Declaration provides new momentum for mountains
©Matt TenBruggencate/Earth Negotiations Bulletin29 September 2022, Aspen – Delegates from 97 mountain countries around the world endorsed the Aspen Declaration today during the closing ceremony of the Sixth Global Meeting of the Mountain Partnership in Aspen, United States of America.
The Mountain Partnership is the United Nations voluntary alliance of partners dedicated to mountain peoples and environments, and its secretariat is hosted by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
The outcome document of this week’s meeting, the Aspen Declaration, promotes cooperation among mountain countries on a wide range of issues including the economy, social development, environment, culture, science and education, as well as the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
“The adoption of the Aspen Declaration provides Mountain Partnership members a new momentum to place sustainability and resilience of mountain ecosystems and communities at the centre of international processes, policies and investments of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” said Rosalaura Romeo of the Mountain Partnership Secretariat.
By endorsing the Aspen Declaration, Mountain Partnership members commit to contribute to implementing the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration 2021-2030 and building on the outcomes of the 2021 UN Food Systems Summit for the development of more sustainable food systems in mountains.
Jointly organized by the Mountain Partnership, the State of Colorado, the City of Aspen, the Aspen Institute and the Aspen International Mountain Foundation (AIMF), the two-and-a-half-day event established the Mountain Partnership agenda and high-level advocacy goals for the next four years. It also celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Mountain Partnership and the International Year of Sustainable Mountain Development 2022.
Challenges for mountain regions
Mountains are home to around 1.1 billion people according to the latest figures. However, biodiversity loss, climate change, land degradation and pollution are severely and increasingly affecting mountain ecosystems and life.
The Mountain Partnership was founded in 2002 to address the challenges facing mountain regions by tapping into the wealth and diversity of resources, knowledge, information and expertise of more than 460 members, including national and local governments, intergovernmental organizations, civil society organizations and private sector.