International Day for Biological Diversity

22 May

Biodiversity is the living fabric of our planet. It underpins human wellbeing in the present and in the future, and its rapid decline threatens nature and people alike. According to the Global Assessment Report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services released in 2019 by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) at UNESCO, the main global drivers of biodiversity loss are climate change, invasive species, over-exploitation of natural resources, pollution and urbanization. The Global Report demonstrated the responsibility of human activities in the loss of biodiversity, which amounted to 75% for terrestrial ecosystems. This assessment also indicated that solutions existed and that it was not too late to act.


To halt or reverse this decline it is vital to transform people’s roles, actions and relationships with biodiversity. Many solutions exist: UNESCO’s diverse networks, programmes and partners have observed positive and inspiring seeds of change around the world. UNESCO also accompanies Member States and their people in their efforts to halt biodiversity loss by understanding, appreciating, safeguarding and using biodiversity sustainably.

Now is time to act for biodiversity! The United Nations has proclaimed May 22 The International Day for Biological Diversity to increase understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues.

We have barely 3 years left to preserve the hospitality of our world and the diversity of the species that inhabit it. A radical change in our relationship with nature and other living beings is needed – in order to design and build a truly shared world.
UNESCO Director-General
Audrey Azoulay Director-General of UNESCO
Message from Ms Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of UNESCO, on the occasion of the International Day for Biological Diversity, 22 May 2022

What UNESCO does for environmental protection

UNESCO's commitment to biodiversity
Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme
Indigenous Knowledge and Biodiversity
The links between Biological and Cultural Diversity

Conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity: designated sites

Biosphere Reserves
Natural World Heritage
UNESCO Global Geoparks (UGGp)


Ocean Biogeographic Information System
UNESCO x Guerlain - Women for Bees
UN website about this day
Past Edition