diversitas conference

October 16, 2009, 10:27
Filed under: Conference announcements, Key topics, Press releases

As we approach the 2010 Year of Biodiversity, the DIVERSITAS second Open Science Conference confirms that the fabric out of which the Earth system is woven is unravelling at an accelerating rate. At the same time, we are discovering ever more about biodiversity and the benefits it provides to people. It is clear that biodiversity loss erodes the integrity of ecosystems and their capacity to adapt in a changing world. It represents a serious risk to human wellbeing and a squandering of current assets and future opportunities.

The biodiversity scientists gathered here commit themselves to finding practical solutions to this problem. They will do so by: increasing shared knowledge of biodiversity and its functions; helping to develop systems for monitoring the biodiversity of the planet; and being responsive to the knowledge needs of society with clear communication of findings.

We welcome the proposed mechanism for the ongoing evaluation and communication of scientific evidence on these issues – the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). We call on governments to establish IPBES as soon as possible and we encourage all scientists to lend their full support. We urge policy-makers to act swiftly and effectively on the already-established and future findings relating to ways of limiting further biodiversity loss and restoring ecosystem services.

Meeting current and future human needs must make adequate provision for the complex web of life of which people are an integral part. People everywhere must give effect to their shared desire for a biologically-rich and productive planet through their individual decisions and actions.


October 4, 2009, 20:58
Filed under: Conference announcements

Please contact marina@southernscience.co.za if you are interested to register as a media representative (working journalist) for this conference. Also let me know if you can’t attend, but would like to receive the press releases and news from this event. Thank you, Marina Joubert

Biodiversity experts meet
September 29, 2009, 10:36
Filed under: Conference announcements

DIVERSITAS Open Science Conference:
600 global biodiversity experts meet in Cape Town Oct. 13-16

Amid deepening concern that the pace of biodiversity loss is worsening in many places, some 600 biodiversity experts will converge in Cape Town October 13-16 for the DIVERSITAS Open Science Conference.

Experts say changes to ecosystems and losses of biodiversity have continued to accelerate. Since 1992, the most conservative estimates suggest that total tropical rainforest greater than the size of California has been converted mostly for food and fuel. Species extinction rates are at least 100 times those in pre-human times and are expected to continue to increase. The focus of biodiversity science today, however, is shifting from simply describing problems to solving them.

The conference takes place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre. With an overarching theme of “Understanding connections, adapting to change,” the 25 conference symposia topics fall into three broad fields:
* Strengthening biodiversity science (including a new global monitoring system and the impacts of climate change, land use changes, biodiversity loss);
* Supporting the interface between science and policy making (including new information synthesis mechanisms, assessing progress towards the world’s 2010 biodiversity targets and the success of economic incentives for biodiversity preservation) and;
* African issues (including the reconciliation of biodiversity conservation and food production)

A detailed news release will be offered prior to the meeting with DIVERSITAS and other experts are available for advance interviews. Full conference details are online at http://www.diversitas-osc.org

For any media enquiries or to schedule an interview, please contact:
Terry Collins +1-416-538-8712; +1-416-878-8712 (m), tc@tca.tc
Marina Joubert, +27 83 409 4254, marina@southernscience.co.za