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30 Aug 2016   10:05:53 PM   Tuesday BdST A- A A+ Print this E-mail this

WildTeam, Bangladesh to make two presentations at IUCN Congress

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World’s leading conservationists are set to gather at the IUCN World Conservation Congress 2016 in Hawaii, USA, to devise ways of conserving natural forests, biodiversity and the global environment.   

Around 6,000 champions of nature from around the globe, including Bangladesh, are going to take part in the 10-day congress, beginning tomorrow (Thursday).

A delegation of WildTeam, Bangladesh, including its Chairman Enayetullah Khan and chief executive Prof Md. Anwarul Islam, and IUCN Bangladesh country representative Ishtiaq Uddin Ahmed will attend the world meet, reports UNB.

Ahead of the Congress, Prof Md. Anwarul Islam said the natural forests, which support safe haven to wildlife, are getting fragmented in the country day by day, putting flora and fauna at risk.

So, he said, the issues of rapid disappearance of natural forests and wildlife in Bangladesh will be highlighted in the global conservation meet.

WildTeam, a conservation organisation in Bangladesh, will make two presentations at the conference, highlighting the present status of Bangladesh’s natural forests and wildlife. It will also highlight USAID’s tiger-conservation activities, being implemented by WildTeam.

Experts in Bangladesh said the country’s natural forests are depleting at an alarming rate in the absence of effective conservation efforts, leading to the destruction of habitats of many rare plants and wild animals.

WildTeam Chairman Enayetullah Khan said any natural forest in a territory not only supports wildlife and biodiversity but also provides ecosystem services to forest-dwellers and local people, which has a high economic value.

“If the natural system of a forest is destroyed, the enabling lives, wildlife and biodiversity will disappear,” he added.

“Natural forest coverage is rapidly declining in Bangladesh, contributing to extinction of species of wildlife,” country representative of IUCN Bangladesh Ishtiaq Uddin Ahmed told the news agency.

The Congress is taking place at a time when the ecosystems across the world are collapsing and species are becoming extinct at an unprecedented rate in many countries, including Bangladesh. 

The conservation meet will bring together several thousand leaders and decision-makers from government, civil society, indigenous peoples, businesses, and academia, with the goal of conserving the environment and harnessing the solutions nature offers to global challenges.

A number of issues related to Asian flora and fauna are expected to be taken up in the sessions for discussion during the Congress being hosted by the State of Hawaii with support from the US State Department.

Issues such as climate change, habitat losses and conservation efforts to endangered species are also expected to come up.

The Congress theme – planet at a crossroads – frames the debate between meeting the immediate needs of human civilisation and the long-term impacts doing so may have on the planet’s capacity to support life.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is a high-profile parliament of nature-lovers. Though essentially a recommendatory body, the IUCN wields formidable influence on the wild-related lawmaking machinery of 166 member-nations of the Convention on International Trading in Endangered Species (CITES) of Wild Fauna and Flora.

Held once every four years, the Congress is the place where IUCN’s more than 1,200 member-organisations exercise their rights, influence the global conservation agenda and guide IUCN’s workplaces for the four years to follow.

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