MAB and the 2013 International Year of Water Cooperation (IYWC)
The United Nations has declared 2013 as the International Year of Water Cooperation (IYWC) in order to raise awareness, both of the potential for increased cooperation, and of the challenges facing water management in light of the increase in demand for water access, allocation and services. UN-Water has called upon UNESCO to lead the 2013 United Nations International Year on Water Cooperation, in particular because of the Organization’s unique multidisciplinary approach which blends the natural and social sciences, education, culture and communication.
Water, in particular, and ecosystems, in general, do not recognize political borders, and they often occur across national boundaries and may be subject to different, or even conflicting, management and land-use practices.
The Man and the Biosphere Programme encourages international, regional, sub-regional and ecosystem-specific networking, as well as South-South and North-South cooperation among Member States to ensure environmental sustainability, reduce the rate of loss of biodiversity and related ecosystem services, and achieve sustainable development on appropriate levels.
Transboundary Biosphere Reserves
Transboundary Biosphere Reserves (TBR) provide a tool for common management. A TBR is an official recognition at an international level and by a UN institution of a political will to co-operate in the conservation and sustainable use through common management of a shared ecosystem. It also represents a commitment of two or more countries to apply together the Seville Strategy for biosphere reserves and its objectives. It corresponds to the increasing recognition of the appropriateness of the ecosystem approach, for conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity.
As of December 2012, twelve Transboundary Biosphere Reserves have officially been designated