A Summary: “Breaking Barriers” Event in Berlin Convenes Decision-makers, Scientists, and Implementers on Biodiversity Conservation as Part of a One Health Approach, Oct. 16, 2023, Berlin
Breaking Barriers Breakout Sessions: Key Outcomes Report
Breaking Barriers Summary Videos: (4-minute version) (8-minute version)
Background: In 2019, representatives from governments, civil society, and scientists from around the world, came together at the “One Planet, One Health, One Future” conference in Berlin, to collaboratively develop an updated framework for the One Health approach. A key outcome of the event was the Berlin Principles, which reaffirm the importance of undertaking an interdisciplinary approach to health, underpinned by a shared understanding that healthy and intact ecosystems provide a critical foundation for present and future health and wellbeing. It is essential to build on the momentum of Conferences of the Parties for the global Conventions on climate (CoP27) and biodiversity (CoP15) in 2022 by garnering commitments for global collaboration and action and meaningfully integrating the environmental perspective in One Health initiatives. With the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF), some progress towards commitments that relate to OneHealth –including the environmental perspective– was made, but decision-makers, donors, and practitioners needed to come together to outline practical ways to move forward.
Thus, the Breaking Barriers event brought together scientists, decision-makers, and implementers related to the environmental pillar of the One Health approach to revisit the Berlin Principles and push the agenda toward action. A major aim of the event was to help "break barriers" by encouraging cross-sectoral collaboration, demystifying questions and concerns about the One Health approach, and informing and inspiring decision-makers and implementers alike. Discussions drew on insights from the Quadripartite’s One Health Joint Plan of Action and the One Health High-Level Expert Panel (OHHLEP), and especially focused on biodiversity conservation and prevention of pandemics at source. The meeting provided a space for cross-sectoral connections to review the status of implementation of the environmental pillar of a One Health approach, showcase expertise and experiences gained (including challenges, success stories, ongoing questions, and lessons learned), identify guidance for the next steps towards action, and shed light on important topics that receive less attention. The event also emphasized economic approaches to valuing environmental assets and health and economic drivers of challenges.