20 Nov 2008
International workshop on Research Strategy on Global Change in Mountain Biosphere Reserves concludes
More than 40 representatives from global conservation organisations in 15 countries met at a workshop organised by UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) and the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in Kathmandu, Nepal, to discuss a strategy for coordinated research on global change in mountain biosphere reserves, and especially the possibilities for implementing the ‘Global Change in Mountain Regions’ research strategy (GLOCHAMORE) at different sites around the world, particularly in the Hindu Kush-Himalayan region. This type of coordinated research will help scientists to assess the impacts of global climate change on the livelihoods of mountain people as well as on the environment. By using a common strategy, results can be compared from different regions and can feed into global assessments. The assembled experts, protected area managers, and scientists used global case studies to analyse effective ways to implement the research strategy to gather information on the impacts of global change in the mountains. The participants agreed that they would have to set priorities, and decided to focus on (a) changes in biodiversity (animals, plants, and others); (b) water systems in and deriving from mountain protected areas; and (c) livelihoods of the people living in and around mountain biosphere reserves and other protected areas. They stressed that exchange of information between the different mountain biosphere reserves must be given high priority.
As explained by Dr Thomas Schaaf, Chief of the Ecological Sciences and Biodiversity Section at UNESCO’s MAB programme, the principal purpose of the workshop was to agree on a common focus within the research strategy to add value to the analysis of the results reached within the mountain biosphere reserve network.
With this event, a two week long series of international meetings on mountain biodiversity at ICIMOD was concluded. All the meetings highlighted the extremely important role of mountain biodiversity not only for the sustainability of local livelihoods but for the whole world. This biodiversity must be maintained for the future.
Read more on the GLOCHAMORE project at http://www.unesco.org/mab/ecosyst/mountains/gcmbr.shtml
For further information contact:
Dr. Michael Kollmair, Programme Manager
Sustainable Livelihoods and Poverty Reduction
GPO Box 3226, Kathmandu, Nepal
Fax: +977 1 5003299