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Overseas Areas bring “Incredible Value” to Biodiversity Research and Management

18 Aug 2015
Overwhelming support for the continuation of the NetBiome network from the participants at a roundtable event during the 27th International Congress for Conservation Biology

 

 

José Azevedo presenting the NetBiome-CSA project. Photo: ©NetBiome-CSA

 

 

There was overwhelming support for the continuation of the NetBiome network from the participants at a roundtable event entitled  “European overseas: New frontier for biodiversity research”, co-organised by IUCN  and NetBiome during the  27th International Congress for Conservation Biology, which took place in Montpellier (France) from 2-6 August 2015.

 

 

 

Carole Martinez, IUCN Programme Coordinator of the Regional Seas and EU Outermost Regions (ORs) and Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs), first highlighted the global importance of biodiversity within European ORs and OCTs, as part of her presentation on the BEST (voluntary scheme for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services in Territories of European overseas) initiative.

 

José Azevedo, NetBiome-CSA coordinator, continued by emphasising Europe’s Overseas comparative advantages for biodiversity research, noting that the added value of ORs and OCTs to conservation biology lies in biodiversity research done over networks crossing geographical and political barriers. José presented the achievements of the NetBiome partnership and then opened the floor for discussion on the ways this partnership could be maintained and reinforced.

 

Among the 24 participants attending the roundtable were many researchers, but also representatives of NGOs and the European Commission. The comments received for the continuation of the network were overwhelmingly positive. Stephan Leiner, future Head of the Biodiversity Unit of DG-ENV, further acknowledged the “incredible value” that ORs and OCTs can bring to European research and management of biodiversity. Among the numerous ideas shared on the continuation of the NetBiome partnership were i) an increased support for young researchers and ii) the unique role of the European Overseas as test beds for new sustainable models of development.