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बेसिक इंग्लिश का दूसरा सत्र (कक्षा प्रारंभ : 22 अक्तूबर, शाम 3:30 से 5:30)
International Day 2014 for Biological Diversity (World Biodiversity Day)
May 23, 2014

The May 22 is the International day for Biological Diversity, and this year the theme is Island Biodiversity. Islands house a disproportionate amount of the world’s biodiversity: although less than 5% of the world’s land area, they are home to over 20% of the planet’s terrestrial biodiversity, and in the last 500 years 80% of vertebrate extinctions have been on islands. Invasive species have been implicated in over half of these extinctions.

The Threatened Island Biodiversity database lists over 500 islands with critically endangered species (the highest level of threat on the IUCN red list), over 80% of which have invasive species present. Ten critically endangered insular bird species have been saved from extinction by direct conservation intervention, including the Tahiti monarch, coincidentally the 2014 winner of the first Birdlife International People’s Choice Award.

This year’s theme was chosen because 2014 is also the International Year of Small Island Developing States (SIDS). It is certainly not just coincidence that these two have occurred together. The fate of island biodiversity and small island states are intimately entwined, mutually reinforcing one another. Threats such as climate change do not discriminate between the livelihoods of humans, fauna or flora. To address such threats requires the empowerment of island communities, who can be confident they have the support of their big continental brothers and sisters, to work towards better livelihoods for themselves, and all the cultural and biological diversity under their custodianship.

Islands and their surrounding near-shore marine areas constitute unique ecosystems often comprising many plant and animal species that are endemic—found nowhere else on Earth. The legacy of a unique evolutionary history these ecosystems are irreplaceable treasures. They are also key to the livelihood, economy, well-being and cultural identity of 600 million islanders—one-tenth of the world’s population.

The theme Island Biodiversity was chosen to coincide with the designation by the United Nations General Assembly of 2014 as the International Year of Small Island Developing States . In addition, the theme was chosen to correspond with the timing of COP decision XI/15 paragraph 1(a) “to strengthen the implementation of the Programme of Work on Island Biodiversity.”

The United Nations General Assembly, by its resolution 55/201 of 20 December 2000, proclaimed 22 May as The International Day for Biological Diversity, to increase understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues. The date designated for the day was chosen to commemorate the adoption of the text of the Convention on 22 May 1992 by the Nairobi Final Act of the Conference for the Adoption of the Agreed Text of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

The day was first created by the Second Committee of the UN General Assembly in late 1993, and the UN General Assembly, by its resolution 49/119 of 19 December 1994, designated December 29 the International Day for Biological Diversity. However, it was difficult for many countries to plan and carry out suitable celebrations for the date of 29 December, given the number of holidays that coincide around that time of year.

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