Missouri Botanical Garden joins convention on biological diversity consortium of scientific partners

November 05, 2010

(ST. LOUIS): On October 19, 2010 during the United Nations International Year of Biological Diversity, the Missouri Botanical Garden has signed a Memorandum of Understanding joining the Convention on Biological Diversity's Consortium of Scientific Partners. The Convention is an international legally binding treaty with three main goals: conservation of biological diversity, sustainable use of its components, and fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from genetic resources.

The Memorandum of Understanding was signed at the 10th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity in Nagoya, Aichi Prefecture, Japan, by Ahmed Djoghlaf, executive secretary to the Convention on Biological Diversity, and Dr. Peter Wyse Jackson, president of the Missouri Botanical Garden. The Garden becomes the 12th member of the Consortium along with The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, The Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle de France, The Royal Botanic Gardens Kew, The German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, The Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, The National Commission for Wildlife Conservation and Development of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, The Mexican Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources, The Museums nature de Montréal, The Higashiyama Botanical Gardens, City of Nagoya, the Royal Botanic Garden of Edinburgh, and the Joint Nature Conservation Committee.

"The Missouri Botanical Garden is delighted to join the Consortium of Scientific

Organizations of the Convention on Biological Diversity," said Wyse Jackson. "A partnership approach to building capacity for the conservation of biodiversity is essential if we are to achieve the challenging targets we face in the decades ahead. The Missouri Botanical Garden is fully committed to supporting biodiversity conservation worldwide and in particular to helping to achieve the objectives of the Convention's Global Strategy for Plant Conservation."

The Global Strategy for Plant Conservation was first adopted in April 2002 and consists of a plan containing 16 strategies to address the loss of plant species around the world. At the meeting in Japan, an updated plan was adopted for the period of 2011 through 2020 with revised targets. The three objectives of the new Global Strategy for Plant Conservation are that plant diversity is well understood, documented and recognized; plant diversity is urgently and effectively conserved; and plant diversity is used in a sustainable and equitable manner. The Garden will play a major role in the achievement of many of its 16 targets and in particular in target one, to create an online flora of all known plants by 2020. The Garden's activities in species and habitat conservation, education and public awareness of plants, and in promoting sustainability around the world, will also contribute significantly to the achievement of many of the other targets.

Opened for signature at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, and entering into force in December 1993, the Convention on Biological Diversity is an international treaty for the conservation of biodiversity, the sustainable use of the components of biodiversity, and the equitable sharing of the benefits derived from the use of genetic resources. With 193 Parties (countries), the Convention has near universal participation among countries. The Convention seeks to address all threats to biodiversity and ecosystem services, including threats from climate change, through scientific assessments, the development of tools, incentives and processes, the transfer of technologies, and good practices. The Convention also seeks the full and active involvement of relevant stakeholders including indigenous and local communities, youth, NGOs, women and the business community. The Secretariat of the Convention is located in Montreal.
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With scientists working on six continents in 38 countries around the globe, the Missouri Botanical Garden has one of the three largest plant science programs in the world, along with The New York Botanical Garden and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (outside London). The Garden focuses its work on areas that are rich in biodiversity yet threatened by habitat destruction, and operates the world's most active research and training programs in tropical botany. Garden scientists collaborate with local institutions, schools, and indigenous peoples to understand plants, create awareness, offer alternatives, and craft conservation strategies. The Garden is striving for a world that can sustain us without sacrificing prosperity for future generation, a world where people share a commitment to manage biological diversity for the common benefit.

Missouri Botanical Garden

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