The wonders of biological diversity
With Nature’s immense diversity of species, its bounty is overwhelming. Every organism genetically unique, and no ecosystem like any other. Biological diversity seems boundless.
Humankind is part of this. Not only are we surrounded by millions upon millions of microbes, plants and animals, we are all part of this web of life. This is true in the most physical sense, through what we eat or perceive, and through what our immune system repels. But for many societies, and especially for people living in rural areas, using the natural resources in their surroundings is vital to their livelihood and the only way to escape poverty.
Biological diversity is essential to humankind’s survival. And yet it is threatened by human activities around the world. The 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro – the Conference on Environment and Development – established a broad awareness of this issue. The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) that was adopted then commits the signatory states to conserve biodiversity, foster its sustainable use and ensure that the benefits from the use of genetic resources are equitably shared.
The 2010 biodiversity target
Ten years after Rio, the community of states reaffirmed this commitment by agreeing on the 2010 Biodiversity Target, with seven focal areas. Making use of pictures produced by renowned photographers from the feature magazine GEO, this exhibition provides a sensuous experience of what the 2010 Biodiversity Target is about.
The pictures are a celebration of pristine nature, but also of cultural landscapes. They tell tales of people contributing to the conservation of biodiversity. They encourage reflection on our own actions and show us how astonishing biological diversity is on Earth.
The “Nature – Our Precious Web” exhibition is a collaborative venture between:
- GEO, the feature magazine, Hamburg, Germany
- Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, Montreal, Canada
- IUCN, The World Conservation Union, Countdown 2010 Initiative, Gland, Switzerland
- GTZ, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit GmbH – German Technical Cooperation, Eschborn, Germany comissioned by the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development
- Supported by: UNDP, United Nations Development Programme