Sixth National Report
Section I. Information on the targets being pursued at the national level
National Target 01. Increasing Public awareness: By 2020, public awareness to the existence values of biodiversity, its contribution to human wellbeing, and public action towards biodiversity conservation and sustainable use - will be increased. ()
All the national targets were formulated in accordance with Aichi Targets, and adapted to the Israeli circumstances. All the national targets still require official approval by the government.
Israel vision is that by 2040, biodiversity in Israel will flourish and become respected by the public for its own value and its importance to human well-being, thus it will be protected, restored and managed sustainably for the benefit of present society and future generations. This will be achieved by stopping the deterioration of biodiversity, ecosystem services and natural assets, through adopting sustainable development principles by 2025.
This national target focuses on mainstreaming the importance of biodiversity and its benefits across society.
National Target 02. Action plan: By 2017, Israel will develop, adopt as a policy instrument, and commence the implementation of an effective, participatory, and updated national biodiversity strategy and action plan. ()
A biodiversity strategic plan was approved by the Environmental Protection Minister in 2010. This national target focusses on the preparation of the conceptual framework and the actual steps required to achieve this vision, in line with the strategic plan and with the Aichi Targets.
National Target 03. Incorporation in governmental policy: By 2025, considerations of biodiversity conservation and of its benefits will be incorporated in the policies of relevant ministries and authorities, the planning system and local governance. ()
This national target focuses on the implementation of the NBSAP policy and principles in all relevant ministries and administrations, at all levels – national, regional, and local.
National Target 04. Economic incentives: By 2025, economic incentives that harm biodiversity will be significantly reduced, and positive incentives to protect biodiversity and its sustainable use will be implemented. ()
This national target focuses on restructuring the economic incentives, so as to reduce their (mostly unintended) negative consequences for biodiversity and promote biodiversity-positive economic activity.
National Target 05. Green Growth and its implementation in the business sector: By 2020, the governmental resolution on Green Growth will be implemented, and biodiversity considerations will be incorporated in the business sector, so that use of natural resources will be within safe ecological limits. ()
This national target specifically focuses on the business sector, recognizing the central role it needs to play in promoting sustainability and biodiversity conservation.
National Target 06. Knowledge base: By 2020, the scientific knowledge base related to the various aspects of biodiversity, including ecosystem services, will be expanded and improved, and so will the national monitoring system, the accessibility to information and its assimilation in the management of biodiversity and in decision making. ()
This national target is one of the key tool for successful implementation of the NBSAP – knowledge. All other national targets depend on reliable, updated and comprehensive data and its analysis, in order to be accomplished.
National Target 07. Reduced land-use change of open landscapes: By 2025, the rate of conversion of natural habitats and all open landscapes will be reduced by half, reducing new low-density housing construction, and conversion of agricultural land to constructed areas. ()
Reduction in natural habitats and open spaces Healthy ecosystems require landscapes that are large enough to support their function and resilience. The aim of this national target is to make sure that the diverse Israeli ecosystems will remain large enough to support their structure and function in a sustainable way.
National Target 08. Fisheries: By 2020, fishing in the Sea of Galilee and the Mediterranean Sea will be sustainable, avoiding overfishing and damage to protected natural assets, endangered species and marine ecosystems. ()
The two leading threats for marine biodiversity are overfishing and pollution. This national target focuses on the former. Until recently, both commercial and recreational fishing were not sustainably managed. This target aims to transform fishing into a sustainable sector. As most of the Israeli Red Sea waters are protected, and because Israel's national target 13 deals specifically with the Red Sea coral reefs, national target 8 deals only with the Mediterranean Sea and the Sea of Galilee.
National Target 09. Forest management: By 2020, planted forests will be sustainably managed according to the new forest management policy of the body in charge of afforestation. ()
In the last decades, Israel underwent large scale afforestation. Hence, this national target focuses on a specific issue – planted forests management, mostly managed by KKL-JNF, the body in charge of afforestation.
National Target 10. Agriculture: By 2020, agricultural areas (including mariculture) will be managed sustainably, ensuring conservation of biodiversity. ()
This national target focuses on the agricultural sector. In Israel, agriculture is a major land use, directly effecting biodiversity of many ecosystems.
National Target 11. Pollution Reduction: By 2025, pollution of the sea and wetlands by hazardous materials and surplus of nutrients will be reduced to levels that are not detrimental to the function of ecosystems and biodiversity. ()
This national target focuses on the ecosystems for which pollution is identified as one of the most critical direct pressures on biodiversity in Israel.
National Target 12. Invasive species: By 2020, broad legislative measures will be developed and implemented to prevent introduction of invasive alien species to Israel. Regarding existing invasive species, a prioritization list for treatment will be established and implemented. ()
In Israel, invasive species adversely affect terrestrial, aquatic, and marine ecosystems. Yet, considerable gaps in the legislation on alien species introduction have been identified, and national-scale prioritization for treatment of existing invasive species is lacking. This target aims to minimize the impact of invasive species on biodiversity and ecosystems.
National Target 13. Coral reef of Eilat: By 2020, the anthropogenic stresses on the coral reefs in the Gulf of Eilat will be reduced. ()
Israel’s coral reefs in the Gulf of Eilat (also known as the Gulf of Aqaba), along the coast of the Red Sea are in the northern hemisphere limit of coral reef distribution and hence are of global importance. Yet, they are located adjacent to a substantial urban and tourist area and the port of Eilat, thus exposing that fragile ecosystem to various anthropogenic stresses.
National Target 14. Protected area representativeness: By 2025, representativeness of the protected areas in Israel will be improved so that all the natural terrestrial, aquatic and marine ecosystems will have a viable protected area. ()
This target was derived from Aichi target 11, however since Israel harbours a wide diversity of ecosystems over a small area and the ecosystems range widely in their size, it was concluded that setting a single numerical representativeness target might be insufficient, especially for ecosystems with small total areas.
National Target 15. Connectivity: By 2020, ecological connectivity between protected areas will be improved by ecological corridors, wildlife passages and other measures. ()
This target was derived from Aichi target 11, as a complementary step to the previous national target (#14), regarding steps that will ensure the viability of Israel’s important ecosystems. Since fragmentation is a major threat to Israel ecosystems, and might also affect inter-continental connectivity, it was decided to dedicate a separate goal to connectivity.
National Target 16. Management: By 2020, protected areas will be managed by the adaptive management approach, based on best and up-to-date available scientific knowledge, derived from ongoing research and long-term monitoring. ()
National Target 17. Endangered species: By 2020, the status of threatened and unique species including endangered species, endemic species, species at the periphery of their distribution range and key species for ecosystems, will be improved. ()
This target was derived from Aichi target 12, regarding the necessary steps required to improve the condition of endangered and sensitive species.
National Target 18. Restoration of ecosystems: By 2025, restoration of wetlands in critical state, including streams and winter ponds, will be accomplished, and the restoration of underrepresented ecosystems– will become a standard management routine. ()
This target directly refers to Aichi targets 14 and 15, regarding the restoration of degraded ecosystems. Its successful implementation depends on many other targets, such as sustainable management of agriculture and forests, pollution minimization and containment of invasive species. Upon its successful implementation, a significant contribution to other Aichi targets, such as the conservation of important ecosystems that are currently under-represented in Nature Parks, and improvement in the condition of endangered species- will also be achieved.