Joining the World Network of Biosphere Reserves
Application to UNESCO for official recognition of the Lake Tana region as a biosphere reserve
An area can only become a biosphere reserve once it has been officially recognised by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) as part of the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme. All of the biosphere reserves around the world form a global network, called the “World Network of Biosphere Reserves”. This network allows the exchange of information, personnel, knowledge and experience. Following its official recognition as a biosphere reserve, the Lake Tana region will become part of this global network of well over 500 biosphere reserves in over 100 countries. The World Network is governed by the “Statutory Framework” adopted by the UNESCO General Conference in 1995 which presents the definition, objectives, criteria and the designation procedure for biosphere reserves. The actions recommended for the implementation of biosphere reserves are set out in the "Seville Strategy" and were further developed in the “Madrid Action Plan” (2008-2013). Each biosphere reserve remains under the sovereign jurisdiction of the State in which they are situated.
NABU assisted the Ethiopian Government, represented by the project partners at Amhara National Regional State’s Bureaus, as specified in the project agreement as well as the federal ministry in charge, the Ministry of Science and Technology (MoST), to prepare, develop and submit the nomination of the proposed Lake Tana Biosphere Reserve.
The application will contain information indicating how the nominated area fulfils the functions and criteria for biosphere reserves required by UNESCO, and present a detailed description of the human, physical and biological characteristics as well as institutional aspects of the area.