The UN declared 2010 the International Year of Biodiversity (IYB). Throughout the year countless initiatives will be organized to disseminate information, promote the protection of biodiversity and encourage organizations, institutions, companies and individuals to take direct action to reduce the constant loss of biological diversity worldwide.
Objectives of International Year of Biodiversity
- Raise awareness of the importance of conserving biodiversity for human well-being and promote understanding of the economic value of biodiversity.
- Enhance public knowledge of the threats to biodiversity and means to conserve it.
- Engage an increasing number of people.
- Celebrate the achievements by governments and Countdown 2010 Partners.
- Report on possible failures to achieve the Target.
- Use momentum to trigger even more action for biodiversity.
- Begin to communicate the post-2010 target(s).
More than one decade after the implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the recognition of biodiversity loss has gained high political profile both at global, national and regional levels. This has resulted in ambitious commitments for action by heads of states, initiated in 2001 in the European Union.
The goal of halting the loss of biodiversity by 2010 is the subject of several key international agreements. Each recognises the rapid degradation of ecosystems and habitats, the increasing threat to many species populations and the urgent need to take action that will halt the decline in irreplaceable natural resources.
While at global level, the Target is “to achieve a significant reduction of the current rate of biodiversity loss”, the one addressed at EU and Pan-European level is even more ambitious as to “halt the loss of biodiversity”. Since 2007, the 2010 Biodiversity Target is fully integrated into the Millennium Development Goals.
In political terms, this commitment represents a radical departure from previous approaches. For the first time, an overall conservation target has been adopted rather than generally formulated objectives or specific measures that may or may not have the desired conservation effect. In that sense, the significance of this agreement cannot be overstated.
However, given the current rapid decline in biodiversity, both in Europe and worldwide, and the ever-increasing extent and intensity of many human activities, the objective of halting the decline in biodiversity by 2010 will require unprecedented efforts in adapting our activities to the needs of natural systems.
From the Countdown 2010 website
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What does this mean for ordinary people?
More about how you CAN make a difference for our biodiversity!