06 November 2023 to
10 November 2023
Organisers: ICIMOD, Chengdu Institute of Biology
ICIMOD and Chengdu Institute of Biology (CIB) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), China are organising a stakeholder workshop on biosphere reserves and other effective area-based conservation measures (OECMs) in the Hindu Kush Himalaya (HKH) region. The joint workshop aims to discuss the potential, challenges, and opportunities for biosphere reserves and OECMs, and initiate dialogue to establish a regional network for sharing learnings and good practices in the context of implementation of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework in the region. In doing so, it aims to advocate inclusive landscape governance mechanisms where the rights of Indigenous people and local communities (IPLCs) are secured and their traditional access to resources are strengthened through biosphere reserves and OECMs. Additionally, the workshop aims to share progress and plans related to National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plans (NBSAPs) and discuss the opportunities to highlight the mountain agenda in NBSAPs and at the 16th meeting of the Conference of Parties to Convention on Biological Diversity (CoP16) to be held in 2024.
ICIMOD’s eight RMCs – Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Nepal, Myanmar, and Pakistan – have adopted the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework and committed to contribute to Action Target 3 of the GBF by expansion and effective management of protected areas (PAs) and OECMs, popularly known as “30×30”. OECMs contribute to Action Target 3 and provide opportunities for inclusive conservation by formally recognising areas outside the state-run PAs, managed by Indigenous peoples, local communities, and private sector or other stakeholders. OECMs have been considered to advance equitable and effective conservation, which recognise the rights of the local and Indigenous peoples and promote principles of social equity. OECMs provide diverse opportunities for conservation and development. Among others, biosphere reserves are considered important for OECMs.
UNESCO launched the ‘Man and the Biosphere’ programme (MAB programme) in 1971, and the World Network of Biosphere Reserves is an important implementation platform for the MAB programme. Against the backdrop of the continuous intensification of global climate change, imbalanced regional development, and limited international scientific and technological cooperation, it is urgent to identify the problems in the management of biosphere reserves, formulate constructive and targeted optimization strategies to improve their governance in the HKH region, and promote harmonious coexistence between people and nature.
ICIMOD, with its regional mandate, and building on decades of experience and strong partnerships in transboundary landscape management with partners across the HKH, including with CAS, aims to further strengthen transboundary cooperation for sustainable landscape management through biosphere reserves and OECMs in the region. ICIMOD aims to assist its RMCs, rights holders and stakeholders, including Indigenous peoples, local communities, and their institutions, and private individuals and institutions, to contribute to Action Target 3 through inclusive mechanisms where the rights of the IPLCs are secured and their traditional access to resources is strengthened.