Real-life laboratories for a green future
UNESCO biosphere reserves are natural or cultural landscapes recognised by UNESCO as model regions for sustainable development. Biosphere reserves are particularly well suited to balancing exploitation by humans and nature conservation efforts on a sustainable basis. The acceptance into the UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves is an important step towards the conservation of outstanding cultural and natural sites, while at the same time the economic development of the local people is promoted.
In Ethiopia, the concept has been in use since 2010, when the country’s first biosphere reserves were set up. NABU has been playing a key role in introducing and implementing it, for instance the Kafa Biosphere Reserve and Lake Tana Biosphere Reserve, since 2006. Ever since, NABU is supporting the administrative management, ecosystem restoration and development of local value chains in these reserves and supports two others.
At Sheka Forest Biosphere Reserve NABU is working towards forest landscape restoration, while at Yayu Coffee Forest Biosphere Reserve NABU is about to implement a project on coffee forest restoration and coffee value chain enhancement.
NABU’s work in these biosphere reserves is based on...
➣ community-management for ecosystem restoration and participatory resource management novation
➣ sustainable development fostering local value chains for instance on coffee and skills of indigenous groups or ecotourism
➣ capacity building, education and support to civil society organisations for improved biosphere reserve management and landscape conservation and restoration
➣ biodiversity assessments, monitoring in collaboration with science partners and species conservation programmes
The Kafa Zone still boasts large, overlapping areas of mountainous afromontane cloud forest. The region is one of the 36 “Biodiversity Hotspots” worldwide and is therefore of global significance for conservation. Around 100 woody plant and many bird and mammal species are recorded. more →