UNEP Magazine ‘Our Planet’ Focuses on Protected Areas, Biodiversity and Climate Change
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The November issue of the UN Environment Programme's (UNEP) ‘Our Planet' magazine focuses on interactions between biodiversity, climate change and protected areas under the heading ‘Climate for Life.' The issue contains 11 feature articles and provides highlights of UNEP's work as well as country-level action on climate change mitigation and environmental conservation.

UNEPNovember 2014: The November issue of the UN Environment Programme’s (UNEP) ‘Our Planet’ magazine focuses on interactions between biodiversity, climate change and protected areas under the heading ‘Climate for Life.’ The issue contains 11 feature articles and provides highlights of UNEP’s work as well as country-level action on climate change mitigation and environmental conservation.

UN Environment Programme Executive Director, Achim Steiner, opens the publication with a message on the importance of protected areas to climate change mitigation as well as to achieving food security, protection from natural disasters and biodiversity goals and targets. He cites the upcoming World Parks Congress and its expected outcome ‘The Promise of Sydney’ as pivotal input to a 2015 agreement on climate in Paris, France.

In a feature article on biodiversity and climate change, Ali Bongo Ondimba, President of Gabon, explores his country’s advances in the transition to a green economy. He explains how the realization that “climate change is perhaps the greatest common threat that we face” led to the re-evaluation of Gabon’s development strategy and the adoption of the principle of low-carbon development.

Anote Tong, President of Kiribati, calls attention to the health of the oceans and explains how “green-blue growth is imperative for managing climate change and maintaining the world’s ecosystems.” He argues that, while the UN Secretary-General’s Climate Summit 2014, held in September 2014, in New York, US, gave a “glimmer of hope” to those on the front line of climate change, the commitments and announcements made need to be translated into national policies and international action.

Razan Khalifa Al Mubarak, Secretary General of the Environment Agency, Abu Dhabi (EAD), the United Arab Emirates (UAE), explains how the ‘Abu Dhabi Blue Carbon Demonstration Project,’ initiated in 2012, which measured carbon sequestration and storage in coastal areas with salt marshes, mangroves and seagrass beds, has provided UAE policy-makers with a sound basis for informed decision-making with sustainability at its core. She explains how the resulting data was incorporated into the development of national policies, including on climate change, and how the Agency views the project’s outcomes as a first step in overall ecosystem-based management in Abu Dhabi.

Other feature articles in the November issue discuss, inter alia: Australia’s policies and actions to protect the Great Barrier Reef; green economy transition challenges and strategies in Indonesia; land degradation and conflict; actions by Pacific countries to protect oceans and fish stocks; protected areas as natural solutions to mitigating climate change; and building momentum through key international conferences for a successful climate change agreement in Paris, France in 2015. [UNEP Publications Webpage] [Publication: Our Planet: Climate for Life]

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