Biodiversity

Coral Reef Tourism in Danger as Reefs Struggle to Adapt to Warming

A recent UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) report on world heritage sites in danger from climate change received widespread media attention after the Australian government requested the removal of a chapter on the Great Barrier Reef.

World Oceans Day – A Death Sea Called Mediterranean

While the United Nations identifies 17 major regional seas in its planning, the Mediterranean is perhaps the most dramatic case as it has gone from being the so-called cradle of civilization to be a cemetery for thousands of asylum-seekers and migrants. And it is most probably also the most polluted water basin the whole world. See this report.

Mega Dams Remain Controversial Source of Energy

Although mega dams can have devastating impacts on ecosystems and indigenous communities, many of the world’s poorest countries still see them as a way to fill gaping holes in their energy supplies.

Wildlife Trafficking Needs to Be a Policy Priority in Asia Pacific Before It Is Too Late

This year’s World Environment Day on June 5 puts the spotlight on the illegal trade in wildlife. The problem has particular significance in Asia, which is the destination for most of the ivory taken from 20,000 to 25,000 elephants and the horns of more than 1,200 rhinos killed in Africa every year. Demand in the region is driven by fast growing middle and upper classes with an appetite for exotic pets, décor, food and fashion.

Closing the Gaps in Fight Against Wildlife Trafficking in Latin America

Although it violates the international conventions that regulate the wildlife trade, it is possible to go online and find websites to buy, for example, axolotl salamanders (Ambystoma mexicanum) or spiny softshell turtles (Trionyx spiniferus).

New International Accord to Tackle Illegal Fishing

A new international accord to tackle illegal and under-reported fishing will come into force on June 5.

Natural Capital Investment Key to Africa’s Development

Plugging Africa’s funding gaps to accelerate social and economic development requires a fresh approach to using its natural capital, environment experts said on Monday.

Prickly Pears Drive Local Development in Northern Argentina

Family farmers in the northern Argentine province of Chaco are gaining a new appreciation of the common prickly pear cactus, which is now driving a new kind of local development.

Why Mainstreaming Biodiversity Is the Call for the Day

We have become familiar with the term biodiversity today due to the Convention of Biological Diversity [CBD] that was accepted by the UN Council on December 29, 1993, after which many nations, including Bangladesh, started becoming its signatories. As biodiversity is the foundation of life and is essential for the services provided by ecosystems, this year's theme of the International Biodiversity Day is “Mainstreaming Biodiversity; Sustaining People and their Livelihoods.”

Bangladesh’s Urban Slums Swell with Climate Migrants

Abdul Aziz, 35, arrived in the capital Dhaka in 2006 after losing all his belongings to the mighty Meghna River. Once, he and his family had lived happily in the village of Dokkhin Rajapur in Bhola, a coastal district of Bangladesh. Aziz had a beautiful house and large amount of arable land.

Species Loss, the Migration Hiding in Plain Sight

Two months ago, I was in Agadez, a city in the middle of the famous Ténéré Desert of Niger. Agadez has become a major transit point on a hazardous journey for the hundreds and thousands of desperate people from all over West Africa trying to make it to the Mediterranean coast every year.

Indigenous Peoples Inclusion at United Nations Incomplete

The United Nations Indigenous Forum is one of the UN's most culturally diverse bodies yet its inclusion within the overall UN system remains limited.

Bees and Silkworms Spin Gold for Ethiopia’s Rural Youth

Beekeeping and silkworm farming have long been critical cogs of Ethiopian life, providing food, jobs and much needed income.

Justice for Berta Caceres Incomplete Without Land Rights: UN Rapporteur

The murder of Honduran Indigenous woman Berta Caceres is only too familiar to Victoria Tauli-Corpuz, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Fund Launched to Help Mountain People Face Climate Change Threat

Jake Norton was on a glacier in northern India. A seemingly impenetrable fortress of sweeping ridges and towering walls of granite, capped by hanging glaciers. It seemed, he said, that nothing could touch it, nothing could beat it down.

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