MAB Issues in Latin America and the Caribbean


Latin America and the Caribbean have ecosystems of global importance, including five of the ten countries that have the greatest diversity of the planet (Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico and Peru). It also includes the eastern side of the Andes, the area with the greatest biological diversity in the world.

Through the World Network of Biosphere Reserves, UNESCO is committed to preserving biodiversity and its related values through diverse strategic partnerships and plans of action.

Ecosystem services

Biosphere reserves present some important ecosystem services that maintain/support, either directly or indirectly, our quality of life. The ecosystems form a natural capital that we must preserve to be able to rely on those services that have consequences on the prosperity of human society, not only on its economy but also on health, social relations, freedoms and security. 

Governance and participatory management

Speaking of Biosphere Reserves, there is a large range of governance modalities, created and perfected to enable bottom-up and cross-sectional participatory management.

This participatory management that gives room to local populations, civil society and the public and private sector is one of the pillars of the MaB programme strategy to reach its goals in this field.

Climate change

Climate change must be tackled as a cross-curricular issue about the impact of human activity on natural resources and its consequences. The Man and the Biosphere Programme (MAB) is engaged in this environmental challenge and recognizes biosphere reserves as being an efficient element against the mitigation of climate change and for constituting a model to adjust to its consequences.

Sustainable Development

In order to solve the issues related with development, UNESCO focuses on promoting sustainability science in Biosphere Reserves, in order to understand and face the current and future economic, environmental, ethical and social challenges. With the same goal, BR are also working on fostering education for sustainable development (ESD) by addressing the interconnected issues of preservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, the mitigation of the effects of climate change and its adaptation process, and the cultural and socioeconomic welfare of human communities.

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