World on track to meet conservation targets

Around 15 per cent of the world’s land surface are now designated ‘protected areas’, as are over 7 per cent of the world’s oceans, putting the world squarely on track to meet its conservation targets.

According to the latest Protected Planet report, more than 20 square kilometres of the earth’s land surface and nearly 27 square kilometres of marine areas are now protected.

“The continued growth in protected areas around the world is essential for the future of biodiversity,” said Neville Ash, director of the UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre, adding that this is thanks to the strong collaboration between countries, NGOs and international organizations.

The Protected Planet report reviewed the progress of Aichi Biodiversity Target 11, which aims for the effective and equitable management of 17 per cent of terrestrial and 10 per cent of coast and marine areas by 2020.

“It is clear that there remain significant challenges to achieve all elements of Aichi Biodiversity Target 11, but this report points out the substantive and important strides that have been made, and focuses attention on the gaps and opportunities, said Trevor Sandwith, director of IUCN’s Global Protected Areas Programme, which produced the report together with the UN Environment World Conservation Monitoring Centre and the National Geographic Society.

“Among these are the need to fully recognize and support the efforts being made by indigenous peoples and local communities, as well as private actors who conserve critical areas.”

By July 2018, around 15 per cent of the earth’s land surface and more than 7 per cent of marine areas have been designated as ‘protected areas’, which means that they receive protection to achieve the long-term conservation of nature. This represents an increase in 0.2 per cent of terrestrial and 3.2 per cent of marine areas since the last report was published in 2016.

Image credit: Ishan @seefromthesky via Unsplash

 

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