Second Asia Parks Congress kicks off in megadiverse Malaysia
KOTA KINABALU, Malaysia -- “Now is the moment to ensure a dignified existence for ourselves and future generations by preserving and protecting the global commons, which include the atmosphere, oceans, and ecosystems that support us.”
Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Hajiji Haji Noor, Chief Minister of Sabah emphasised the importance of nature protection during the opening ceremony of the Second Asia Parks Congress, which convened representatives from protected area authorities, other government agencies, NGOs, academia, youth, the private sector, indigenous peoples, and local communities from all over Asia.
The five-day Second Asia Parks Congress hosted by Malaysia, is anticipated to set the agenda for Asia’s protected and conserved areas for the next ten years. The online and on-site discussions are focused on the following thematic areas: nature-based solutions for health and wellbeing; governance of protected and conserved areas; connectivity and transboundary conservation; effective protected and conserved areas; economic and financial sustainability of protected and conserved areas; and urban conservation and a new generation.
Investing in the region’s natural capital, including strengthening protected and conserved areas, is poised to provide significant contributions to the pressing challenges today.
During the plenary discussion, Dr Madhu Rao, Chair of the World Commission on Protected Areas, further remarked that “protected and conserved areas are the critical piece linking the twin crises of biodiversity loss and climate change.” The declarations manifesting from the Congress are set to open opportunities and promising pathways towards recovery and resilience–building.
The ASEAN Centre for Biodiversity (ACB) leads a session that emphasises the diversity of governance mechanisms for protected and conserved areas in the region, as well as lessons from these grounded experiences.
ACB executive director Dr. Theresa Mundita Lim highlighted that “the region harbours more than 700 thousand and 300 thousand square kilometres of terrestrial and marine protected areas respectively.” She stressed that these areas are directly linked with the well-being of close to 700 million citizens of the ASEAN. Lim added that “as one of the most biodiverse regions in the world, the ASEAN presents rich perspectives and valuable lessons to the rest of Asia and the world.”
Congress participants can also experience the ACB’s physical and virtual exhibits that highlight the region’s flagship programmes: the ASEAN Heritage Parks and the ASEAN Green Initiative.
To know more about the ACB, log on to www.aseanbiodiversity.org. (ACB)
Click the link below to watch:
(opening ceremony) https://www.facebook.com/SbhParks/videos/515720620194723
(closing ceremony) https://www.facebook.com/SbhParks/videos/503391684904803