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RCESD briefs; “Biodiversity and Sustainable Tourism”

The International Day of Biodiversity (IDB) was created by the second committee of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly in late 1993, 29 December which was the day of entry into force of the convention of Biological Diversity. In December 2000, the UN General Assembly adopted 22 May as IDB, to commemorate the adoption of the text of the Convention on 22 May 1992 by the Nairobi Final Act of the Conference for the Adoption of the Agreed Text of the Convention on Biological Diversity.

The theme has been changing over the past years. In 2015 it was Biodiversity for Sustainable Development; in 2016 it became Mainstreaming Biodiversity; Sustaining People and their Livelihood. This 2017 theme is Biodiversity and Sustainable Tourism. This theme has been chosen to coincide with the observance of 2017 as the International Year of Sustainable Tourism for Development as proclaimed by the UN General Assembly in its Resolution 70/193 and for which the UN World Tourism Organization is providing leadership.

Biodiversity, at the level of species and ecosystems provides an important foundation for many aspects of tourism. Recognition of the great importance to tourism economies of attractive landscapes and a rich biodiversity underpins the political and economic case for biodiversity conservation. Many issues addressed under the Convention on Biological Diversity directly affect the tourism sector.

Tourism in Cameroon is a growing industry. Cameroon is described as “Africa in miniature”, promoting its diversity of climate, culture, and geography. Cameroon’s wildlife draws both safari-goers and big-game hunters, as Cameroon is home to many of Africa‘s iconic animals: cheetahs, chimpanzees, elephants, giraffes, gorillas, hippopotami, and rhinoceroses.

A well-managed tourist sector can contribute significantly to reducing threats to, and maintain or increase, key wildlife populations and biodiversity values through tourism revenue.

 

By Dimo Cedrick

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