While there is a growing recognition that biological diversity is a global asset of tremendous value to future generations, the number of species is being significantly reduced by certain human activities. Given the importance of public education and awareness about this issue, the UN decided to celebrate the International Day for Biological Diversity annually.
On the 2021 IDB day, UN Secretary-General – António Guterres stated, “We need to protect nature, restore ecosystems and establish a balance in our relationship with the planet. The rewards will tremendous. By reversing biodiversity loss, we can improve human health, realize sustainable development and address the climate emergency. Solutions exist to protect our planet’s genetic diversity on land and at sea. Everybody has a part to play.”
Opened for signature in 1992 at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, and entering into force in December 1993, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) is the international legal instrument for “the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources” that has been ratified by 196 nations.
Its overall objective is to encourage actions, which will lead to a sustainable future.
The conservation of biodiversity is a common concern of humankind. The Convention on Biological Diversity covers biodiversity at all levels: ecosystems, species and genetic resources. It also covers biotechnology, including through the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety. In fact, it covers all possible domains that are directly or indirectly related to biodiversity and its role in development, ranging from science, politics and education to agriculture, business, culture and much more.
In December 2000, the UN General Assembly adopted 22 May as IDB, to commemorate the adoption of the text of the Convention on 22 May 1992 by the Nairobi Final Act of the Conference for the Adoption of the Agreed Text of the Convention on Biological Diversity.
Each year, a theme is set to unite the celebration of the International Day for Biological Diversity in the 196 countries.
- Slogan,“We’re part of the solution” reminds us that our actions are needed to ensure that biodiversity is protected in order to ensuresustainable development.
- Sustainable lifestyle choices must be made available to everyone, everywhere.
- Solutions exist to protect Earth’s genetic diversity on land and sea, everybody has a part to play.
- Countries to adopt robust, ambitious post-2020 global biodiversity frameworkin October, relevant for both the post-pandemic period of reconstruction and in building the resilience needed in the face of growing environmental, health and development challenges.
“World leaders are presently embarking on a journey to negotiate an ambitious post-2020 global biodiversity framework that will be agreed later this year at COP-15 in Kunming, China.It is imperative that we get a compact that will support and enable transformative change and alter the behaviour of people, businesses and governments around the world.
Elizabeth Maruma Mrema, Executive Secretary, CBD
Biodiversity is declining at an unprecedented and alarming rate, with pressures intensifying. We are depleting resources faster than nature can replenish them. COVID-19 crisis highlights just how critical the health of nature is for human well-being and sustainable development.
By reversingbiodiversity loss, we can improve human health, realize sustainable development, and address the climate emergency.Solutions existto protect Earth’s genetic diversity on land and sea. Everybody has a part to play.Sustainable lifestyle choices are the key.
The choice to live sustainably must be made available to everyone, everywhere.Thismeans better policies that promote government, business and individual accountability.We all need to be part of a movement for change.This year, world leaderswill meet in Kunming, China, to agree on an ambitious post-2020 global biodiversity framework.Let us support their mission by advocating for nature. Let’sall be part of the solution.