17.06.2011 - UNESCOPRESS

UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Programme: 40 years of sustainable development

Launched in 1971, UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Programme (MAB) is celebrating its 40th anniversary. To mark the occasion, an international conference, “For life, for the future. Biosphere reserves and climate change” will be held on 27 and 28 June in Dresden, Germany. It will be followed from 28 June to 1 July by the 23rd session of the MAB International Coordinating Council, during which new biosphere reserves will be designated.

“For life, for the future. Biosphere reserves and climate change” will be opened on 27 June by the Director-General of UNESCO Irina Bokova, the German Federal Minister for Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety Norbert Röttgen, and the Secretary of the MAB programme Natarajan Ishwaran.  The conference will assess the pioneering achievements of the programme, which seeks to promote a harmonious balance between environmental preservation and human activity. Topics on the agenda include biosphere reserves as implementing instruments for climate change policy, green economies, and land-use for climate change adaptation and mitigation.

The 23rd session of the International Coordinating Council of the Man and the Biosphere Programme (MAB-ICC) will follow from 28 June to 1 July. It will decide on new biosphere reserves and take note of recommendations on periodic review reports of existing sites.

There are currently 563 Biosphere Reserves in 110 countries. These are sites recognized under UNESCO's Man and the Biosphere Programme that seek to reconcile biodiversity conservation and socio-economic development. Local communities are active in management, research, education and training projects in the Biosphere Reserves, making them sites of excellence for experimentation in sustainable development.

A press conference to announce the new Biosphere Reserves will be held on 30 June at noon (Convention Centre of the Radisson Blu Park Hotel, Meeting room MAB Bureau, Dresden Radebeul, Germany).


                                                  Media contacts :

                                   Agnès Bardon, UNESCO Press Office.

       Tel : +33 (0) 1 45 68 17 64 and from June 28th : +33 (0) 6 31 54 30 36. 

                                         Email : a.bardon(at)unesco.org


                       Markus Neitzer; c/o iserundschmidt GmbH, Bonn - Berlin
                                                 Tel.: +49 (0)228 55525-22
                                     Email: mab40-presse(at)unesco.de


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