RBINS Joins Global Coalition for Biodiversity

#Biodiversity2020 logo (© Karikatūra.Lv)
04/03/2020
RBINS Joins Global Coalition for Biodiversity
post by
Kelle Moreau

On the occasion of the World Wildlife Day, the European Commission launched a new global coalition for biodiversity in Monaco on Tuesday March 3th, 2020.  The Commission is calling on all world national parks, aquariums, botanic gardens, zoos, science and natural history museums to join forces and boost public awareness about the nature crisis, ahead of the crucial CoP 15 of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Kunming (China) in October 2020. During CoP 15, the 196 Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity are expected to adopt a new global framework to protect and restore nature, as much-needed as the Paris Agreement focusing on the climate crisis.

European Commissioner for Environment, Oceans and Fisheries Virginius Sinkevičius said: « It is crucial that all of us learn just how real the nature crisis has become. We urgently need to take global action to protect and restore biodiversity. Otherwise much of the nature we love, and depend on for our food, health, and economy, is in danger of disappearing forever. Millions of people visit natural history museums, botanic gardens, national parks and similar institutions every day. With their collections, education and conservation programmes, they are the best ambassadors to raise public awareness about the crisis looming over all of us, if we do not act now. If our only chance of seeing a species is in these institutions, then we will all have failed. »

As the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences (RBINS) is both a natural history museum and a scientific institute, that observes the declining biodiversity first-hand through both research and collections, it is an essential part of our role to be advocates for nature and stay true to our motto « Bringing nature into everyone’s life ».

RBINS also serves as the National Focal Point for the Convention on Biological Diversity and is well embedded in the Belgian Biodiversity Platform hosting the Belgian Focal Points for the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity Ecosystem Services (IPBES), the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and co-coordinating the pan-European BiodivERsA Partnership and the EKLIPSE knowledge and learning mechanism on biodiversity and ecosystem services. It is therefore part of a large network of Belgian organisations whose work is strongly related to biodiversity, both at the policy level and in the field. As such, we are joining forces and investigating potential cooperations and initiatives to amplify the message on the biodiversity crisis, as well as inform people on how to turn the tide. To be continued!

More information on the #Biodiversity2020 communication campaign can be found in the full EC press text on ec.europa.eu/commission/presscorner/detail/en/ip_20_348.

 

Text of Pledge

 

UNITED FOR #BIODIVERSITY

 

We,

World National ParksAquariumsBotanic GardensZoosNatural History and Science Museums,

Join forces for nature.

Our collections show the diversity of life on Earth.

Our conservation programmes help preserve endangered animals and plants.

Our education programmes underline the importance of nature for our existence.

Today the world is facing a planetary emergency,

A nature crisis fueled by human impacts, including climate change.

Science is warning that one million species are at risk of extinction,

Not in a distant future, but within a few decades.

As signatories to this pledge, we support the call

By the European Commission

For decisive global action to halt biodiversity loss.

We urge all governments to agree on ambitious policies to restore and protect the ecosystems on which we all depend.

We invite all national, regional and local authorities to take urgent measures on the ground.

We call on all business leaders to acknowledge their dependence and impact on nature and to commit to sustainability.

And we appeal to all our visitors to raise their voice for nature.

We belong to nature, we need nature, and nature now needs us like never before.

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