JAPAN, OCTOBER 24, 2010

Dear Friends,

Greetings from Nagoya, Japan!

Please find below a Press Release, 'Global network needed for ecological research in
mountains' issued today in relation to the side event co-organised by the
International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), the United
Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and the World Conservation Union - World
Commission on Protected Areas (IUCN-WCPA) during the 10th Conference of the Parties
to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) on 22nd October 2010 at Nagoya,
Japan.

Feel free to disseminate it widely to your networks and others who may be interested
in the news.

Best regards,
Nira
=========

PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Global network needed for ecological research in mountains
(Kathmandu, Nepal, and Nagoya, Japan, 24 October 2010)

Conservation scientists emphasised the importance of biodiversity management in
mountain regions at Nagoya in a side event on 'Transboundary cooperation for
biodiversity conservation -- a strategy for an ecosystem approach and adaptation to
climate change'. Developing a global network for long-term ecological research in
mountain areas, combined with strong national institutions, is essential to reduce
scientific uncertainty. The network will help to harmonise research protocols and
standardise environmental monitoring to increase our understanding of changes and
needs in the different mountain regions of the world.

The side event was co-organised by the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD), the United
Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and the World Conservation Union - World
Commission on Protected Areas (IUCN-WCPA) during the 10th Conference of the Parties
to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) on 22nd October 2010 at Nagoya,
Japan, to raise awareness among the international community of the role of ecosystem
and landscape approaches for achieving global conservation targets in transboundary
areas in the mountains.

Professor Christian Koerner, Chair of the Global Mountain Biodiversity Assessment,
in his keynote address, drew attention to the fact that, "Mountains have always been
a place of survival due to their topographic richness". "The diversity of functions
provided by the rich mountain biodiversity is as important as the diversity itself,"
he added. Mountains provide opportunities for species to move vertically and
horizontally and to adapt in response to climate change. However, some species are
restricted to micro-climatic conditions, and those that cannot move further up are
likely to be trapped and lost.

Mr. Ibrahim Thiaw, Director of Policy at UNEP, stressed the importance of the
'ecosystem approach' in biodiversity conservation and management. This approach,
advocated by the CBD, looks at linkages between ecosystem resilience and the
sustainable use of biodiversity for and by the people. He appreciated the joint
ICIMOD and UNEP collaboration for a regional transboundary conservation initiative
adopting the ecosystem approach in the Kailash Sacred Landscape, in cooperation with
China, India, and Nepal.

Dr. Penelope Figgis from IUCN-WCPA stressed the significance of habitat connectivity
for maintaining a natural landscape, keeping the ecosystems intact, allowing species
to move and survive, interlinking protected areas, and restoring landscapes by
involving people across many tenures.

Dr. Andreas Schild, Director General of ICIMOD, emphasised the need for systematic
generation of data through scientific monitoring. Highlighting the trans-Himalayan
transect approach, he said, "The transect concept has enormous potential to meet the
challenges of climate change, particularly in relation to adaptation and
biodiversity conservation and management in the Hindu Kush-Himalayas." The regional
approach facilitated by ICIMOD can certainly achieve the long term goal of data
generating and sharing, provided the countries across the Hindu
Kush-[cid:image006.jpg@01CB7386.1974AD80]Himalayas join hands. He advocated for a
link between biodiversity conservation and poverty reduction. Biodiversity is not
hampering mountain communities; rather it is a prerequisite for strengthening their
resilience. The Kailash Sacred Landscape programme aims at developing and testing
this approach by implementing conservation and ecosystem management strategies, and
enhancing climate change resilience of communities.

Mr. Warren Evans, Director of Environment at the World Bank, in his closing remarks,
again emphasised the urgent need for data from the mountain regions adding that,
"The transect concept is a good way to fill the data gaps from the Hindu
Kush-Himalayan region,", and concluding, "Regional cooperation is expected to
enhance the inter-sectoral policy coordination that addresses regional and
transboundary issues."

[end]

For more information, please contact:
Dr. Eklabya Sharma, Programme Manager
Environmental Change and Ecosystem Services (ECES), ICIMOD
Email: esharma@icimod.org

Dr. Nakul Chettri, Biodiversity Specialist
Environmental Change and Ecosystem Services (ECES), ICIMOD
Email: nchettri@icimod.org
Tel. +977 1 5003222

Notes to Editor
ICIMOD www.icimod.org<http://www.icimod.org/>
The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development, ICIMOD, is a regional
knowledge development and learning centre serving the eight regional member
countries of the Hindu Kush-Himalayas - Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, China,
India, Myanmar, Nepal, and Pakistan - and based in Kathmandu, Nepal. Globalisation
and climate change have an increasing influence on the stability of fragile mountain
ecosystems and the livelihoods of mountain people. ICIMOD aims to assist mountain
people to understand these changes, adapt to them, and make the most of new
opportunities, while addressing upstream-downstream issues. We support regional
transboundary programmes through partnership with regional partner institutions,
facilitate the exchange of experience, and serve as a regional knowledge hub. We
strengthen networking among regional and global centres of excellence. Overall, we
are working to develop an economically and environmentally sound mountain ecosystem
to improve the living standards of mountain populations and to sustain vital
ecosystem services for the billions of people living downstream - now, and for the
future.

Nira Gurung (Ms), Communications Officer
International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development
GPO Box 3226, Khumaltar, Lalitpur, Kathmandu, Nepal.
Tel +977-1-5003222 Direct Line 5003310 Ext 115 Fax +977-1-5003277  Web
www.icimod.org<http://www.icimod.org>