The 4th World Congress of Biosphere Reserves ended on 17 March in the capital city of Peru with the adoption of a Declaration and a new ten-year Action Plan for UNESCO's Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme and its World Network of Biosphere Reserves.

On a positive note the Action Plan encourages a 'wider and more active role' for local communities in the management of the reserves along with greater involvement of citizen groups and organizations.  The plan also encourages partnerships between science and policy, between national and local governance, public and private sector actors.

Johan West of Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve reports that plotting out of a ten-year global roadmap for the protection of biodiversity is considered key to the Sustainable Development Goals and the agreements reached at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP21).

'Biosphere reserves provide the United Nations with a unique model for the hands-on realization of sustainable development' 

MAB Strategy 2015-2025

The Strategy foresees that the MAB Programme will –

  • concentrate its support to Member States and stakeholders in conserving biodiversity, restoring and enhancing ecosystem services, and fostering the sustainable use of natural resources;
  • contribute to sustainable, healthy, and equitable societies, economies and thriving human settlements in harmony with the biosphere;
  • facilitate biodiversity and sustainability science, education for sustainable development and capacity building; and
  • support mitigation and adaptation to climate change and other aspects of global environmental change.

The focus on environmental change expands the previous focus areas expected of Biosphere Reserves. The additional requirement will have to be taken into consideration as the Management Plan of the Magaliesberg Biosphere has not addressed this directly. 

 Magaliesberg Biosphere

© 2015 Magaliesberg Biosphere - A Section 21 Company. All Rights Reserved.  Logo and Slogan are copyright protected.
All images and content © the original authors/owners as stipulated.