Unicef to mark 50th anniversary of the Man and the Biosphere Programme “It’s about life”

UNESCO will this Wednesday celebrate the 50th Anniversary of its Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme with renowned primatologist Dr Jane Goodall, photographer Sebastião Salgado, artist and UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador Vik Muniz, indigenous peoples’ climate advocate Hindou Oumarou, youth representatives and partners from around the world.

UNESCO is also hosting an exhibition, It’s about Life, showcasing collective work by people from over 30 of Biosphere Reserves to mark the anniversary.

Established by UNESCO in 1971 as an intergovernmental scientific programme, MAB pioneered the idea of biodiversity conservation and sustainable development. Today, its World Network of 727 Biosphere Reserves in 131 countries, occupying more than 6% of the earth’s landmass.

At the forefront of the sustainable development movement, Biosphere reserves were established as ‘petri-dishes’ for finding the optimal balance between the needs of local people and those of their environments. They are a testimony to UNESCO’s innovation in creating sustainable livelihoods for local populations, safeguarding biodiversity, and promoting peace between communities in conflict over natural resources.

Highlights of the day: 

2021 Sultan Qaboos Prize for Environmental Conservation award ceremony.

Intergenerational dialogue between youth spokespersons, biodiversity experts, indigenous representatives and artists.

Handover of drones to facilitate the protection of African Great Apes and their habitats.

Launch of a water quality monitoring tool for the Lake Chad Basin.

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