UNESCO African Network Discusses Aligning the Man and Biosphere Strategy to the SDGs

UNESCO10 December 2015: As part of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme, the 4th Session of the General Assembly of the African Network of Biosphere Reserves (AfriMAB) discussed aligning the MAB Strategy 2015–2025 to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Participants also discussed the Lima Action Plan of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves for 2016-2025, and held preliminary discussions on priority areas for AfriMAB.

During the session, which took place in Accra, Ghana, from 24-27 November 2015, Daniel Amlala, Executive Director, Ghana Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), noted the importance of the meeting, as it coincides with the implementation of the SDGs and the preparation for the 4th World Congress of Biosphere Reserves that is scheduled to take place from 14-17 March in Lima, Peru.

The meeting was attended by representatives from more than 20 countries including Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, the Central Africa Republic, Côte d'Ivoire, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, the Republic of Sao Tome and Principe, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo and Zimbabwe. Officials from UNESCO, the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) and the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) were also present.

The AfriMAB network is a regional network of the Man and the Biosphere programme. It was created by the 'Regional Conference for Forging Cooperation on Africa's Biosphere Reserves for Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Development' in Dakar, Senegal, in 1996. The network aims to promote regional co-operation in the fields of biodiversity, conservation and sustainable development through trans-border projects, which are primarily based in biosphere reserves. [UNESCO Press Release] [Ghana News Agency Press Release] [AfriMAB Webpage] [Man and the Biosphere Programme Website]