Canada prepares to welcome the world to the UN Conference of the Parties on Biological Diversity: COP15

News release

December 1, 2022 – Montréal, Quebec

With up to one million species currently at risk of extinction worldwide, the decline of biodiversity has critical implications for humanity, from the collapse of food, economic, and health systems, to the disruption of entire supply chains. The world cannot afford to wait any longer for global action on nature protection.

In a global effort to halt and reverse biodiversity loss, Canada is welcoming the world to Montréal this month for the 15th Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (COP15). This landmark international nature conference, the largest in a generation, will see thousands of delegates from around the world gathered in Montréal to take action on protecting nature. Today, a flag-raising ceremony took place outside the conference venue, symbolizing the hand-over of the space to the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity.

As delegates from around the world begin to arrive, the Government of Canada is seizing this opportunity to showcase the country’s incredible artistic talents, focused on the theme of biodiversity. Art is an important lens influencing reflections on how people can act to preserve and protect the planet and strengthen connections to nature and the land.

Working with the Canada Council for the Arts, Telefilm Canada, the National Film Board of Canada, Canada’s National Arts Centre, and the Quartier des spectacles in Montréal, the Government of Canada will showcase and share the richness of Canada’s culture and heritage.

A varied cultural program will be offered to both international delegates and the general public in Montréal around three main components:

  • Films and virtual reality: Telefilm Canada and the National Film Board of Canada will partner to present screenings of Canadian biodiversity-related films to the public and COP15 delegates at the National Film Board of Canada headquarters, in downtown Montréal. Virtual reality experiences prepared by Canadian artists and filmmakers will also be available for the public at the same location.
  •  Musical arts: Canada’s National Arts Centre will present a broad spectrum of artists to COP15 delegates, highlighting the breadth and diversity of Canadian and Indigenous music. The National Arts Centre is also partnering with the Quartier des spectacles Partnership and the Marché de nuit Montréal to present Karen Tam’s outdoor winter light installation in Chinatown, created especially for the occasion, and to support interactive arts during COP15.
  • Visual arts: The Canada Council for the Arts will present a thematic display of 40 works of art from its Art Bank collection to COP15 delegates. The works explore the intricate relationship between humans and nature from a visual artist’s point of view, and highlight some of the key themes being addressed at COP15. These displays will be located at the Canada Pavilion and on the ground floor of the convention center.

This cultural program complements activities that will be offered free of charge in the COP15 Public Action Zone, located in the Port of Montréal. Hosted by Réseau Environnement, the COP15 Public Action Zone will be a space for the public to take part in the COP process and engage in the themes of COP by meeting with Indigenous peoples; civil society, including youth and women-led initiatives; academics; artists; families; businesses; and community groups from across Canada and abroad.


"As we prepare to welcome the world to Montréal for COP15, the Government of Canada will support and showcase Canadian artists, while offering opportunities for Montréalers and visitors to immerse themselves in the beauty of nature and biodiversity through arts and culture."

– The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

Associated links


Kaitlin Power
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change

Media Relations
Environment and Climate Change Canada
819-938-3338 or 1-844-836-7799 (toll-free)

Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Twitter page

Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Facebook page

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