Introduction: Abram Bicksler, FAO
Please allow me to introduce myself- My name is Abram Bicksler and I am the new FAO focal point for pollinators and am resident in the Ecosystem Management and Agroecology team (AGPME) at headquarters in Rome. It is a great honor to be in this role and to see the excitement and urgent need surrounding the conservation and sustainable use of pollinators.
As part of the Ecosystem Services and Agroecology team at FAO, my role includes collaboration, resource creation, technical backstopping, and project implementation in the areas of pollinators, ecosystem services, and agroecology. Building off the work of the first International Pollinators Initiative, and infused with a new work plan mandate from the CBD SBSTTA Rec 22/9 concerning the conservation and sustainable use of pollinators, I am excited to pursue the coordination and implementation of a new International Pollinators Initiative (IPI 2.0) over the coming years. The main elements of this plan are to:
1) Support the implementation of coherent and comprehensive policies for the conservation and sustainable use of pollinators at the local, subnational, national, regional, and global levels, and to promote their integration into sectoral and cross-sectoral plans, programs, and strategies;
2) Reinforce and implement management practices that maintain healthy pollinator communities, and enable farmers, beekeepers, foresters, land managers, and urban communities to harness the benefits of pollination functions and services for their productivity and livelihoods;
3) Promote education and awareness in the public and private sectors of the multiple values of pollinators and their habitats, improve the tools for decision-making, and implement practical actions to reduce and prevent pollinator decline; and,
4) Monitor and assess the status and trends of pollinators, pollination, and their habitats in all regions and to address gaps in knowledge, including by fostering relevant research.
This is a big task ahead of us, but I am delighted to be in touch with the Coalition of the Willing on Pollinators and appreciate the collective resolve the Coalition has for advocating and implementing actions to advance pollinators and their crucial role in food and agriculture. To that end, I look forward to our collaboration to implement actions for the conservation and sustainable use of pollinators. Together we can help to ensure that wild and managed pollinators thrive for the benefit of the planet and humans alike.
Please reach out to me at GlobalAction-Pollination@fao.org and keep your eyes open for changes and additions to the FAO Global Action on Pollination Services for Sustainable Agriculture website.
Thanks and best regards,
Abram J. Bicksler