Biosphere Reserves

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What is a Biosphere Reserve?

Biosphere Reserves are areas of terrestrial and coastal/marine ecosystems, designated to reconcile the conservation of biodiversity with the quest for economic and social development and the maintenance of cultural values.

They are internationally recognised within the framework of UNESCO’s Programme on Man and the Biosphere. As of 2013, there are 621 Biosphere Reserves in 117 countries spread across the world ranging from rainforests and coasts to the fringes of cities.

 Image of Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere Reserve, UK  Image of Mont-Viso Biosphere Reserve, France/UNESCO Media Services
Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere Reserve, UK Mont-Viso Biosphere Reserve, France/UNESCO Media Services
 Image of  Bras D’Or Lake Biosphere Reserve, Canada/Bras D’Or Lake Biosphere Reserve Association  Image of Aya Biosphere Reserve, Japan/UNESCO Biosphere Reserves
 Bras D’Or Lake Biosphere Reserve, Canada/Bras D’Or Lake Biosphere Reserve Association  Aya Biosphere Reserve, Japan/UNESCO Biosphere Reserves

 

What are the functions of a Biosphere Reserve?

Conservation – to protect all the wildlife and their habitats, as well as the landscapes and natural resources that we rely on such as water, air and soil.

Development – to help develop the lives and economy of the people and businesses in the area in a way that is sustainable and doesn’t destroy our natural environment.

Knowledge – use the Biosphere Reserve to further environmental education, public engagement and research into our Biosphere and its importance to us all.

 

Image of a sealion

 Development/UNESCO Media Services

Image of Bull Island walk

Conservation Development/UNESCO Media Services Knowledge  

 

What does a Biosphere Reserve consist of?

Core Areainternationally and nationally important areas where the conservation of wildlife and natural resources is strictly protected.

Buffer Zone – the area that surrounds or adjoins the core areas where nature is conserved alongside compatible human uses of the land or water. These might include activities such as ecotourism, recreation, sustainable agriculture and forestry plus others.

Transition Zone – the wider area where people live and work that involves community participation and sustainable management of the Biosphere Reserve.

 

 Image of make-up o f a biosphere
 Biosphere Reserve zones/UNESCO UK MAB

 

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Chun físeán faoi chomarclanna bithsféir a fheiceáil cliceáil anseo

Biosphere Reserve Frequently Asked Questions

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