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6 September 2012

The World Conservation Congress Opens

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The IUCN World Conservation Congress is the world’s largest and most important conservation event. Held every four years, it aims to improve how we manage our natural environment for human, social and economic development.

In 2012 it is being held on the island of Jeju, Republic of Korea. Leaders from government, the public sector, non-governmental organizations, business, UN agencies and social organizations will discuss debate and decide solutions for the world’s most pressing environment and development issues.

The Congress starts with a Forum where IUCN Members and partners discuss cutting-edge ideas, thinking and practice. The Forum leads into the Members’ Assembly, a unique global environmental parliament of governments and NGOs.

Effective conservation action cannot be achieved by conservationists alone. The 2012 IUCN World Conservation Congress is the place to put aside differences and work together to provide the means and mechanisms for good environmental governance, engaging all parts of society to share both responsibilities and the benefits of conservation.  The broadening of the congress to include themes such as people & governance, climate, development and food is not to all IUCN members’ tastes, however despite this discordance the conference is set to press forward

SIANI has seen that within this year’s congress the application of the word ‘conservation’ has been broadened out significantly and correctly to incorporate climate-food-development.  Our goal here is to both participate in discussion and listen to other delegates and report to our membership base. Through this process we hope to strengthen our own awareness of this sector and work with a better understanding of these complex issues that our use of the term ‘food security’.

Over the next three days we will be reporting back from sessions looking at soil and desertification, ecosystem based disaster risk reduction, nexus and the use of biodiversity in agriculture.

During the conference you can follow SIANI on twitter and also via the IUCN Twitter Hub.  It’s also interesting to know that SIANI advisory board member Anders Wijkman is up for election as the President of the IUCN. We wish him the best of luck.