It’s International Day For Biodiversity & The 25th Anniversary of It’s Convention; Celebrating The Rich Variety of Life on Earth!
Image from Himalayan News Express
Today marks the 25th anniversary of the entry into force of the Convention on Biological Diversity, an international treaty for “the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources.”
Since its inception, the Convention has been sanctioned by 196 nations and has been implemented through the vision and leadership displayed by countries, non-governmental and inter-governmental organizations, indigenous peoples and local communities, the scientific community and compassionate individuals.
This year’s theme of International Biodiversity is “Celebrating 25 Years of Action for Biodiversity.”
“The rich variety of life on Earth is essential for the welfare and prosperity of people today and for generations to come,” Mr. António Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General said in a statement. “Protecting and restoring ecosystems and ensuring access to ecosystem services are necessary for the eradication of extreme poverty and hunger. Reducing deforestation and land degradation and enhancing carbon stocks in forests, drylands, rangelands, and croplands are needed for mitigating climate change. Protecting the biodiversity of forests and watersheds supports clean and plentiful water supplies. These are just some of the benefits of biodiversity.”
Yet, despite this understanding, Guterres notes that biodiversity loss sadly continues around the globe.
According to Guterres, the Convention is responding to this dilemma with a new plan to intensify efforts and build on successes.
“This year, Parties to the Convention will begin work on a new action plan to ensure that, by 2050, biodiversity is valued, conserved, restored and wisely used for the benefit of all people. The entire world needs to join this effort,” continued Guterres. “On this International Day for Biological Diversity, I urge governments, businesses, and people everywhere to act to protect the nature that sustains us. Our collective future depends on it.”
David Morgan, Officer in Charge, Secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) concurs in a statement that conveys “While we are still facing tremendous challenges, with the political will of the world’s governments, we can protect the world’s biological diversity. We, at CITES, will continue our collaboration with CBD to save our common heritage for this and future generations.”
WAN encourages everyone to take time today to reflect on how they can contribute to help in the conservation of biological diversity. Perhaps research some programs dedicated to preserving endangered species or habitats and how to help them, watch a film or documentary on environmental issues, take a hike and appreciate nature, or even better, plant a tree or raise awareness to the importance of biological diversity by sharing packets of seeds for others to plant.
A list of some of the ways 16 of the Convention countries are honoring this special day can be found HERE!
Sadly, the list is small while the issue remains monumental.