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Message from Antonio Guterres for the 50th anniversary of UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Programme

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During the past half-century, UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Programme has promoted a more harmonious relationship between humanity and nature.  In marking the 50th anniversary of the Programme and the 75th anniversary of UNESCO, we celebrate the efforts of the Man and the Biosphere community to find local solutions that balance biodiversity conservation with inclusive sustainable development.

For 50 years, the Man and the Biosphere Programme has built a community of 290 million people living in 727 biosphere reserves in 131 Member States.  The World Network of Biosphere Reserves is inspiring cooperation between scientists and local communities to define a more respectful, ethical and wise way of living with nature.

As humanity’s climate, biodiversity and inequality crises worsen, our global response will demand unprecedented effort and imagination.  The experience and know-how of Man and the Biosphere communities can provide invaluable models for sustainable living and connecting people and nature.

I congratulate the entire Man and the Biosphere community on this anniversary, and I urge you to use the celebrations to broadcast your accomplishments as examples of how we can build a better, more inclusive and green future for all people, and especially those who depend so closely on nature’s resources.