Mountains

©UNESCO/T.Schaaf

Sustainable mountain resources management via research, conservation and information sharing

Mountain regions represent about one quarter of the Earth's terrestrial surface, and are home to approximately 25% of the global population. Mountains are crucial for life. They offer a wealth of ecosystem functions and services (freshwater, biodiversity, forest products, minerals, habitats for threatened species), and landscapes and cultures of exceptional value.

Yet, such wealth is fragile. Threatened by global and climate change, mountain regions face loss of rare and endangered species, modified water balances (including glacial melt), and changing land use modifying socio-economic conditions and livelihoods of people. UNESCO-MAB assesses the impacts of global and climate change on fragile mountain ecosystems using mountain biosphere reserve as study and monitoring sites, notably through:

  • Project GLOCHAMORE (Global Change in Mountain Regions) and the GLOCHAMORE Research Strategy
  • Project GLOCHAMOST (Global Climate Change in Mountain Sites -  Developing Adaptation Strategies for Biosphere Reserves)
  • International conferences and workshops on global and climate change in mountains
  • Two UNESCO Chairs in Sustainable Mountain Development (Kyrgyzstan; United Kingdom)
  • Publications on mountain relevant issues (see column on the right hand side).


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