African Reserves

UNESCO celebrates half-century of biosphere preservation |


“It’s really a program for people, because people are part of nature… so they are integrated into the protection of nature but also into the sustainable use of natural resources,” said Miguel Clusener Godt, from United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Secretary of the MAB program.

© UNESCO

Where we are

Today, 727 biosphere reserves integrate nature conservation and sustainable development in 131 countries, including 22 cross-border sites.

In Africa, there are 86 sites in 31 countries; Arab States, 35 sites in 14 countries; Asia and the Pacific, 168 sites in 40 countries; Europe and North America 306 sites in 24 countries; and 132 sites in 24 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean.

If the world’s bioreserves were to be built up, Godt said they would amount to about five percent of the world’s surface area, covering 6,812,000 km² or “about the size of Australia.”

Africa

The diverse vegetation and unique fauna of Gombe Masito Ugalla Biosphere Reserve in Tanzania is also home to the largest chimpanzee community in the country and includes Gombe National Park, forest land reserves and part of Lake Tanganyika.

Wildlife species in the region include African elephants, ornate frogs, and eight primate species.

The flora there includes a species discovered and named after Gombe, while the biodiversity of Lake Tanganyika includes more than 300 species of fish, 250 species of birds and reptiles, such as the water cobra and the snake of Tanganyika water.


The core area of ​​Gombe Masito Ugalla Biosphere Reserve in Tanzania is blessed with natural, scenic, cultural and social attributes, including the country's largest chimpanzee community.

© UNESCO

The core area of ​​Gombe Masito Ugalla Biosphere Reserve in Tanzania is blessed with natural, scenic, cultural and social attributes, including the country’s largest chimpanzee community.

Asia and pacific

The Maolan in China was classified as a biosphere reserve in 1996. It is located in the autonomous prefecture of Qiannan Buyi and Miao in the province of Guizhou and covers an area of ​​20,000 hectares, with a forest cover of 88.61%.

Known for its “hugging trees” which cling tenaciously to the rocks of the mountain landscape, the rich biodiversity also includes pheasants, orchids and magnolias.

The local indigenous peoples Yao, Buyi and Shui value the environment of their region and coexist harmoniously with nature. Because trees provide them with vital resources, for over 1,000 years local communities have performed ceremonies and rituals to care for the trees.


The Jabal Moussa Biosphere Reserve in Lebanon is a veritable mosaic of ecological systems.

Arab states

Located on the western slope of the Mount Lebanon range and overlooking the Mediterranean Sea, the 6,500 hectare Jabal Moussa Biosphere Reserve encompasses the “Mount of Moses” – an important site for Christian pilgrims – and its seven villages.

The landscape of Jabal Moussa, preserved over the centuries, conceals the marks of a region at the crossroads of civilizations, which archaeologists are still unearthing.

Just 40 km northeast of Beirut, the biosphere reserve is three times the size of the city and, together with the Chouf and Jabal Rihane Biosphere Reserves, forms an ecological corridor running along the mountainous backbone of Lebanon.

Latin America and the Caribbean

Located in southeastern Uruguay, Bañados del Este is home to a remarkable complex of ecosystems, including white sandy beaches, dunes, and lagoons along the Atlantic coast, and is home to diverse wildlife that remains almost untouched. both on land and at sea.

The biosphere reserve covers 12,500 km² of the eastern coast of Uruguay and is also home to the state’s highest peak, Cerro Catedral.

Hidden among the dunes, this tourist destination is among the most popular in the biosphere reserve and the perfect place to connect with nature. Due to its remoteness, there is no connection to the local network or landlines, but the local population can access mobile networks and the Internet.

Europe

In Spain, the transition to clean energy in the El Hierro Biosphere Reserve illustrates the continued efforts to live in harmony with nature.

The biosphere reserve covers the entire island and some of its waters, with 60% of the island being integrated into the core zone and buffer zones.

El Hierro aims to produce 100% of its electricity from renewable energies.

During this time, at least 2,604 species of flora and fauna have been recorded on the island, and the reserve is a haven for friendly marine mammal species.


El Hierro, a volcanic island in Spain, has an incredibly diverse landscape and a great variety of plant and animal life.

© UNESCO

El Hierro, a volcanic island in Spain, has an incredibly diverse landscape and a great variety of plant and animal life.