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Europa

2003-05-22

EUROPE/ITALY - BIO-DIVERSITY AND RELIEF OF POVERTY – CHALLENGES FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT FOR INTERNATIONAL BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY DAY

Rome (Fides Service) – UNEP, the United Nations Environment Programme, as made 22 May International Biological Diversity Day ” to spread awareness and knowledge on questions related to bio-diversity. The theme this year is “Bio-diversity and poverty relief – a challenge for sustainable development». Kofi Annan says that biological diversity is fundamental for human life and it plays a crucial role in sustainable development and the elimination of poverty. Bio-diversity sustains millions of people, it helps to guarantee food security. It is also a rich source for traditional medicine and modern pharmaceutics. The Convention on biological diversity signed in 1992 in Rio de Janeiro came into force in 1994 and 186 countries have ratified it. Its main objective is the preservation of biological diversity; sustainable use of its components; equal distribution of the advantages deriving from the exploitation of energy resources. The meeting in Rio in 1992 focused on the environmental aspects of sustainable development. At the 2002 meeting in Johannesburg, governments looked at the situation of the planet and the consequences of the process of globalisation in recent decades on the choice and actuation of policies for sustainable development. Social and economic problems were given priority attention. The ensuing Action Plan focuses on three key questions: eliminating poverty, sustainable use and protection of ecosystems (struggle against deforestation and spreading of desert). As well as various other collateral themes dealt with in preparatory meetings: water, energy, health, farming, bio-diversity. AP (Fides Service 22/5/2003 EM lines 26 Words: 307)

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