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Network of UN ecological reserves adds 22 new sites

July 06, 2005

New York City - Ranging from coastal mangrove forests to desert mountains chains, and stretching from Chile to Mongolia, 22 ecosystems have been added to a United Nations programme that promotes sustainable development on a scientific basis with the active involvement of local communities.

With the new additions, there are now 482 sites in 102 countries that make up the World Network of Biosphere Reserves, under the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) Programme of the United Nations Scientific, Educational and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

At each reserve, communities attempt to enhance their socio-economic development while also promoting biodiversity conservation. Community members also contribute to governance, management, research, education, training and monitoring at the sites, UNESCO says.

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