Biosphere Reserves share their solutions for people and nature to thrive together

06 June 2018

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© Gouritz Cluster Biosphere Reserve
© Gouritz Cluster Biosphere Reserve

In the isolated town of Van Wyksdorp, South Africa, a project to restore degraded ecosystems using an indigenous plant is creating jobs while addressing climate change. Organic coffee production in El Triunfo, Mexico, is protecting local biodiversity while boosting the local economy. In Moen, a Danish island, natural spawning habitats were recreated to support the fish populations, which have a high economic value. Similar projects are taking place in biosphere reserves all around the world with the same goal: to ensure a more sustainable future by connecting people and nature.

These initiatives, implemented by the local communities together with experts and managers, are a testament of the unique role played by biosphere reserves in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, and to the commitment of the people living in these special areas. There are currently 669 biosphere reserves in 120 countries, each working towards local solutions to address global challenges. These communities are proud to share their experience in a new series of videos, each showcasing one of the many ways they are making a difference.

UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme and its World Network of Biosphere Reserve (WNBR) organized the campaign “#ProudToShare” and selected 30 videos, released at a special event during the multi-stakeholder Forum on Science, Technology and Innovation for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the Technology Facilitation Mechanism in New York on 5 June 2018. They show how positive actions in biosphere reserves are contributing to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda as a whole, and are now available online.

The side event provided an opportunity to show the impact of biosphere reserves efforts to achieve the SDGs, with the presentation of case studies from Mount Hakusan and Tadami Biosphere Reserves (Japan), Luquillo Biosphere Reserve (United States of America) and Magaliesberg Biosphere Reserve (South Africa).

The videos will also be displayed during the upcoming High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (New York, 16-18 July 2018) and the next International Co-coordinating Council of the MAB Programme (Palembang, Indonesia, 23-28 July 2018).

The World Network of Biosphere Reserve is #ProudToShare these solutions and stories that demonstrate the creativity and diversity of their communities.

Case studies: