Nations back UN biodiversity panel

More than 90 states lend support to creation of body to help protect world's ecosystems.

    Tigers have been hunted extensively, putting
    them on the brink of extinction [AFP]

    The panel will peer-review science research on biodiversity and ecosystems to ensure that governments are receiving the best information and advice, and are able to act more decisively to reverse various trends in the natural world.

    'Timely and vital'

    The creation of such a body has, according to many experts, become vital.

    The current rate of species extinction as a result of human activity is more than 100 times faster than the rate of natural extinction, according to the UN.

    More than 16,000 species are threatened with extinction, almost wholly as a result of human action, including habitat destruction, global warming, over-exploitation and pollution.

    "We must be fully aware that the disappearance of biodiversity plays a decisive role in development," said Chantal Jouanno, the French secretary of state for ecology.

    "The stakes for the future of humanity" are high, she said.

    The panel will also focus on poverty alleviation, human well-being and sustainable development.

    The UN general assembly will have to approve the decision to set up the panel at a meeting in September.

    It will then be put to environment ministers for endorsement at Unep's world ministerial meeting in February next year.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Visualising every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Visualising every Saudi coalition air raid on Yemen

    Since March 2015, Saudi Arabia and a coalition of Arab states have launched more than 19,278 air raids across Yemen.

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Lost childhoods: Nigeria's fear of 'witchcraft' ruins young lives

    Many Pentecostal churches in the Niger Delta offer to deliver people from witchcraft and possession - albeit for a fee.

    Why did Bush go to war in Iraq?

    Why did Bush go to war in Iraq?

    No, it wasn't because of WMDs, democracy or Iraqi oil. The real reason is much more sinister than that.