New plea for trans-boundary conservation sites

There is an urgent need to set up trans-boundary conservation sites to help protect endangered species in the Arabian Peninsula and maintain the area's natural resources, environmental balance and economic growth.

Abdul Aziz Abdulla Al Midfa, Director-General of Environment and Protected Areas Authority (EPAA), made this call in the First International Conference on Biodiversity Conservation in the Arabian Peninsula held at the American University of Sharjah last week, marking the year 2010 as the International Year of Biodiversity chosen by the United Nations Environment Programme.

Al Midfa identified the three potential sites at the boundaries of UAE, Oman and Saudi Arabia, Oman and Yemen, and Bahrain and Saudi Arabia as area for such conservation efforts.

He said His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, had recognised the trans-boundary nature of biodiversity issues, and that networking and information sharing are pivotal in addressing major regional and global challenges, such as biodiversity and climate change.

"That is why we had the first Conservation Workshop for the Fauna of Arabia in 2000 and the first-ever review of the amphibians and freshwater fish of the Arabian Peninsula in 2002. The first Population and Habitat Viability Analyses (PHVA) were done for the Arabian leopard and Arabian Tahr with an updated analysis and the issue of the First Arabian Leopard Study Book and the drawing up of general conservation strategies taken in 2008," he said. "Over the past 10 years, more than 320 experts from 41 different countries have assessed 215 species, including amphibians, birds, raptors and owls, fish, snakes of Arabia and Arabian leopards."

The AUS focuses on preparing the younger generations for the challenges of the future. Despite all the challenges that this and coming generations may face, none is greater or more important than working to preserve and stabilise the world's climate and ecology, said Dr Peter Heath, the Chancellor.

He said humankind is becoming the victim of its own technological success..

Prince El Hassan bin Talal of Jordan told the conference in a speech, read on his behalf by Dr Abdullah Al Moosa, former president of the University of Jordan: "If we are to improve the human environment, a synergy between energy and water is essential. Ambitious trans-regional co-operation is needed to foster a new chapter of international energy trade for clean, renewable energy.

 

Keep up with the latest business news from the region with the Emirates Business 24|7 daily newsletter. To subscribe to the newsletter, please click here.

 

Print Email