Sector-based approach to science policy for biodiversity

Crops using a solar-powered pump (Mali)

There is a growing recognition of the essential role agricultural biodiversity plays in meeting basic human food security and nutritional needs; we will consequently need to develop a new “agro-culture” which maintains diversity and achieves sustainability. UNESCO also contributes to the Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research.

The UNESCO-IHP Ecohydrology Programme focuses on an integrated understanding of biological and hydrological processes at a catchment scale in order to create a scientific basis for a socially acceptable, cost-effective and systemic approach to the sustainable management of freshwater resources.

Groundwater dependent ecosystems
A better understanding of water as both an abiotic resource and a service delivered by ecosystems is needed. This understanding would make it possible not only to identify and quantify the critical linkages that regulate the interrelationships of hydrology and biota, but also to see how the control of these linkages may contribute to environmental sustainability. Today, the management approach has to go beyond protection and restoration and recognize the carrying capacity of ecosystems in the face of increasing human impact, find ways of improving and transferring solutions across a variety of environments.

Sustainable tourism
Linking biodiversity conservation and sustainable tourism at world heritage sites.
The World Heritage Tourism Programme has launched several projects and initiatives dealing with sustainable tourism and biodiversity conservation. The programme encourages sustainable tourism actions at World Heritage sites and develops policies and processes for site management and for the state parties to the Convention to address this increasingly important management concern.

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