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Recommendations from UNESCO’s IYB Science Policy Conference Highlight the Climate-Stabilization Function of Biodiversity

February 2010: The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has published the statement and recommendations from the UNESCO International Year of Biodiversity (IYB) Science Policy Conference, which took place in Paris, France, from 25-29 January 2010. The Statement recognizes that biodiversity provides critical goods and services on which our lives depend, including the stabilization of climate.

It is further explained that conservation biogeography (the study of the spatial distributions of patterns and processes of life through time, in relation to threats and impacts at multiple and interlinked scales) is especially useful in informing policy makers on scales, dynamics and uncertainty surrounding biodiversity impacts from climate change and other anthropogenic forces in marine and terrestrial ecosystems. On the way forward, it is recommended that the full value of biodiversity, not least its role in ecosystem functioning and maintenance of ecosystem services, thus helping society adapt to climate change, underpinning food and health security and adding value to the global economy, be highlighted to decision makers and stakeholders. [The Recommendations]