International Union for the Conservation of Nature | Wikipedia audio article
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International Union for the Conservation of Nature | Wikipedia audio article

September 11, 2019

The International Union for Conservation of
Nature (IUCN; officially International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources)
is an international organization working in the field of nature conservation and sustainable
use of natural resources. It is involved in data gathering and analysis,
research, field projects, advocacy, and education. IUCN’s mission is to “influence, encourage
and assist societies throughout the world to conserve nature and to ensure that any
use of natural resources is equitable and ecologically sustainable”. Over the past decades, IUCN has widened its
focus beyond conservation ecology and now incorporates issues related to sustainable
development in its projects. Unlike many other international environmental
organisations, IUCN does not itself aim to mobilize the public in support of nature conservation. It tries to influence the actions of governments,
business and other stakeholders by providing information and advice, and through building
partnerships. The organization is best known to the wider
public for compiling and publishing the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, which assesses
the conservation status of species worldwide.IUCN has a membership of over 1400 governmental
and non-governmental organizations. Some 16,000 scientists and experts participate
in the work of IUCN commissions on a voluntary basis. It employs approximately 1000 full-time staff
in more than 50 countries. Its headquarters are in Gland, Switzerland.IUCN
has observer and consultative status at the United Nations, and plays a role in the implementation
of several international conventions on nature conservation and biodiversity. It was involved in establishing the World
Wide Fund for Nature and the World Conservation Monitoring Centre. In the past, IUCN has been criticized for
placing the interests of nature over those of indigenous peoples. In recent years, its closer relations with
the business sector have caused controversy.IUCN was established in 1948. It was previously called the International
Union for the Protection of Nature (1948–1956) and the World Conservation Union (1990–2008).==History==
Establishment IUCN was established on 5 October 1948, in
Fontainebleau, France, when representatives of governments and conservation organizations
signed a formal act constituting the International Union for the Protection of Nature (IUPN). The initiative to set up the new organisation
came from UNESCO and especially from its first Director General, the British biologist Julian
Huxley. The objectives of the new Union were to encourage
international cooperation in the protection of nature, to promote national and international
action and to compile, analyse and distribute information. At the time of its founding IUPN was the only
international organisation focusing on the entire spectrum of nature conservation (an
international organisation for the protection of birds, now BirdLife International, had
been established in 1922.) Early years: 1948–1956
IUPN started out with 65 members. Its secretariat was located in Brussels. Its first work program focused on saving species
and habitats, increasing and applying knowledge, advancing education, promoting international
agreements and promoting conservation. Providing a solid scientific base for conservation
action was the heart of all activities; commissions were set up to involve experts and scientists. IUPN and UNESCO were closely associated. They jointly organized the 1949 Conference
on Protection of Nature (Lake Success, USA). In preparation for this conference a list
of gravely endangered species was drawn up for the first time, a precursor of the IUCN
Red List of Threatened Species. In the early years of its existence IUCN depended
almost entirely on UNESCO funding and was forced to temporarily scale down activities
when this ended unexpectedly in 1954. IUPN was successful in engaging prominent
scientists and identifying important issues such as the harmful effects of pesticides
on wildlife but not many of the ideas it developed were turned into action. This was caused by unwillingness to act on
the part of governments, uncertainty about the IUPN mandate and lack of resources. In 1956, IUPN changed its name to International
Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Increased profile and recognition: 1956–1965
In the 1950s and 1960s Europe entered a period of economic growth and formal colonies became
independent. Both developments had impact on the work of
IUCN. Through the voluntary (i.e. pro bono) involvement
of experts in its Commissions IUCN was able to get a lot of work done while still operating
on a low budget. It expanded its relations with UN-agencies
and established links with the Council of Europe. In 1961, at the request of United Nations
Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the United Nations Economic and Social Council,
IUCN published the first global list of national parks and protected areas which it has updated
ever since. IUCN’s best known publication, the Red Data
Book on the conservation status of species, was first published in 1964. IUCN began to play a part in the development
of international treaties and conventions, starting with the African Convention on the
Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources. Environmental law and policy making became
a new area of expertise. Africa was the focus of many of the early
IUCN conservation field projects. IUCN supported the ‘Yellowstone model’
of protected area management, which severely restricted human presence and activity in
order to protect nature. IUCN and other conservation organisations
were criticized for protecting nature against people rather than with people. This model was initially also applied in Africa
and played a role in the decision to remove the Maasai people from Serengeti National
Park and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area.To establish a stable financial basis for its
work, IUCN participated in setting up the World Wildlife Fund (1961) (now the World
Wide Fund for Nature WWF). WWF would work on fundraising, public relations,
and increasing public support. IUCN would continue to focus on providing
sound science and data, and developing ties with international bodies. Funds raised by WWF would be used to cover
part of the operational costs of IUCN. Also in 1961, the IUCN headquarters moved
from Belgium to Morges in Switzerland. Consolidating its position in the international
environmental movement: 1966–1975 Public concerns about the state of the environment
in the sixties and seventies led to the establishment of new NGOs, some of which (such as Greenpeace
and Friends of the Earth) also worked globally. Many of these new organisations were more
activist and critical of government than IUCN which remained committed to providing science-based
advice to governments. As a result, IUCN was criticized by some as
being old-fashioned and irrelevant. IUCN’s membership still grew (from 200 in
1961 to 350 in 1974) and its formal standing and influence increased. A grant from the Ford Foundation in 1969 enabled
it to boost its secretariat and expand operations. During the 1960s, IUCN lobbied the UN General
Assembly to create a new status for NGOs. Resolution 1296, adopted in 1968, granted
‘consultative’ status to NGOs. IUCN itself was eventually accredited with
six UN organizations. IUCN was one of the few environmental organisations
formally involved in the preparations of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment
(Stockholm, 1972). The Stockholm Conference eventually led to
three new international conventions, with IUCN involved in their drafting and implementation: Convention Concerning the Protection of World
Cultural and Natural Heritage (1972). IUCN co-drafted the World Heritage Convention
with UNESCO and has been involved as the official Advisory Body on nature from the onset. CITES- the Convention on International Trade
in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (1974) IUCN is a signatory party and the CITES
secretariat was originally lodged with IUCN. Ramsar Convention – Convention on Wetlands
of International Importance (1975). The secretariat is still administered from
IUCN’s headquarters.IUCN entered into an agreement with the United Nations Environment Programme
UNEP to provide regular reviews of world conservation. The income this generated, combined with growing
revenue via WWF, put the organisation on relatively sound financial footing for the first time
since 1948. This period saw the beginning of a gradual
change in IUCN’s approach to conservation. Ensuring the survival of habitats and species
remained its key objective, but there was a growing awareness that economic and social
demands had to be taken into account. IUCN started to publish guidelines on sustainable
development. In 1975 the IUCN General Assembly passed a
resolution to retain indigenous peoples and cater for their traditional rights in National
Parks and protected areas. As a result, IUCN became more appealing to
organisations and governments in the developing world. The World Conservation Strategy 1975–1985
In the late seventies, between its General Assemblies in Kinshasha (1975) and Ashkabad
(1978), IUCN went through a phase of turbulence in governance and management. Its work program continued to grow, in part
as a result of the partnership with WWF. In 1978, IUCN was running 137 projects, largely
in the global south. The involvement of representatives from the
developing world in the IUCN Council, Committees and staff increased. In 1975 IUCN started work on the World Conservation
Strategy. The drafting process – and the discussions
with the UN agencies involved – led to an evolution in thinking within IUCN and growing
acceptance of the fact that conservation of nature by banning human presence no longer
worked. (The debate about the balance between strict
nature protection and conservation through sustainable development would, however, continue
within IUCN well into the 1990s.) The World Conservation Strategy was launched
in 35 countries simultaneously on 5 March 1980. It set out fundamental principles and objectives
for conservation worldwide, and identified priorities for national and international
action. It is considered one of the most influential
documents in 20th century nature conservation and one of the first official documents to
introduce the concept of sustainable development. The Strategy was followed in 1982 by the World
Charter for Nature, which was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly, after preparation
by IUCN. In 1980, IUCN and WWF moved into shared new
offices in Gland, Switzerland. This marked a phase of closer cooperation
with WWF. It was the support of WWF that allowed IUCN
to weather a financial crisis in 1980–1982. The close ties between IUCN and WWF were severed
in 1985 when WWF decided to take control of its own field projects, which so far had been
run by IUCN. Sustainable development and regionalisation:
1985 to present day In 1982, IUCN set up a Conservation for Development
Centre within its secretariat. The Centre undertook projects to ensure that
nature conservation was integrated in development aid and in the economic policies of developing
countries. Over the years, it supported the development
of national conservation strategies in 30 countries. Several European countries began to channel
considerable amounts of bilateral aid via IUCN’s projects. Management of these projects was primarily
done by IUCN staff, often working from the new regional and country offices IUCN set
up around the world. This marked a shift within the organisation. Previously, the volunteer Commissions had
been very influential, now the Secretariat and its staff began to play a more dominant
role. In 1989, IUCN moved into a separate building
in Gland, close to the offices it had shared with WWF. Initially, the focus of power was still with
the Headquarters in Gland but the regional offices and regional members’ groups gradually
got a bigger say in operations. In spite of the increased attention for sustainable
development, the protection of habitats and species remained a core activity of IUCN. Special programs were developed for Antarctica,
tropical forests and wetlands, and IUCN expanded its operations in Latin America. In 1991, IUCN (together with UNEP and WWF)
published Caring for the Earth, a successor to the World Conservation Strategy. It was published in the run-up to the Earth
Summit, the 1992 UN Conference on Environment and Development in Rio de Janeiro. The World Conservation Strategy, Caring for
the Earth, and the Global Diversity Strategy (also published in 1992 by UNEP, IUCN, and
WRI) are considered hugely influential in shaping the global environmental agenda. They lay the foundations for the Convention
on Biological Diversity, a new global treaty for the conservation and sustainable use of
biological diversity developed by UNEP with support from IUCN, the Framework Convention
on Climate Change and Agenda 21.Social aspects of conservation were now integrated in IUCN’s
work; projects began to take account of the role of women in natural resource management
and to value the knowledge indigenous peoples have about their natural environment. At the General Assembly in 1994 the IUCN mission
was redrafted to its current wording to include the equitable and ecologically use of natural
resources. IUCN’s current work makes direct contributions
towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. In particular, IUCN’s Programme 2017–2020
focusing on SDG 1 (No poverty), SDG 2 (Zero hunger), SDG 3 (Good health and well-being),
SDG 5 (Gender equality), SDG 6 (Clean water and sanitation), SDG 10 (Reduced inequalities),
SDG 11 (Sustainable cities and communities), SDG 13 (Climate action), SDG 14 (Life below
water), SDG 15 (Life on land), SDG 16 (Peace, justice and strong institutions), SDG 17 (Partnerships
for the goals). Closer to business: 2000 to present day
Since the creation of IUCN in 1948, IUCN Members have passed more than 300 resolutions that
include or focus on business related activities. The range of topics covers in these resolutions
varies greatly, including a focus on fisheries, tourism, agriculture, the extractive industries
and the business sector in general. The increased attention on sustainable development
as a means to protect nature brought IUCN closer to the corporate sector. A discussion started about cooperation with
business, including the question if commercial companies could become IUCN members. The members decided against this, but IUCN
did forge a partnership with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development. IUCN renewed a multi-year MOU with them with
WBCSD in December 2015. In 1996, after decades of seeking to address
specific business issues, IUCN’s Members asked for a comprehensive approach to engaging the
business sector. Resolution 1.81 of the IUCN World Conservation
Congress held that year “urged IUCN Members and the Director General, based on the need
to influence private sector policies in support of the Mission of IUCN, to expand dialogue
and productive relationships with the private sector and find new ways to interact with
members of the business community”. The IUCN Global Business and Biodiversity
Program (BBP) was established in 2003 to influence and support private partners in addressing
environmental and social issues. The Program wants to engage with business
sectors that have a significant impact on natural resources and livelihoods to promote
sustainable use of natural resources. In 2004, the first IUCN Private Sector Engagement
Strategy was developed (in response to Council Decision C/58/41). Most prominent in the Business and Biodiversity
Program is the five-year collaboration IUCN started with the energy company Shell International
in 2007. The aim was to mitigate the environmental
impact of Shell’s operations. The partnership almost immediately came under
fire from IUCN’s members, especially the NGO-members who feared for IUCN’s reputation. At the World Conservation Congress (formerly
the IUCN General Assembly) in Barcelona in 2008 NGO-members tabled a motion to terminate
the Shell contract. The proposal was narrowly defeated.In 2012,
at the World Conservation Congress held in the Republic of South Korea, the Union adopted
a more focused approach to enable IUCN to deliver both on‐the‐ground results and
fit‐for‐purpose knowledge products, working with many agencies, including business. The Business Engagement Strategy (2012) calls
on IUCN to prioritise engagement with business sectors that have a significant impact on
natural resources and livelihoods. These include: large ‘footprint’ industries,
such as: mining and oil and gas; biodiversity-dependent industries including fishing, agriculture
and forestry; and, financial services and “green” enterprises such as organic farming,
renewable energy and nature-based tourism. Furthermore, the IUCN Operational Guidelines
for Business Engagement offer critical support to the implementation of the IUCN Business
Engagement Strategy. First developed in 2006, and then revised
in 2009 and again in 2015, they provide a consistent approach to the management of risks
associated with engaging business, as well as outline the opportunities between the different
types of engagement. Today, the Business and Biodiversity Programme
continues to set the strategic direction, coordinate IUCN’s overall approach and provide
institutional quality assurance in all business engagements. The Programme ensures that the Business Engagement
Strategy is implemented through IUCN’s global thematic and regional programmes as well as
helps guide the work of IUCN’s six Commissions. Championing Nature-based Solutions: 2009 to
present day Nature-based Solutions (NbS) use ecosystems
and the services they provide to address societal challenges such as climate change, food security
or natural disasters.The emergence of the NbS concept in environmental sciences and
nature conservation contexts came as international organisations, such as IUCN and the World
Bank, searched for solutions to work with ecosystems rather than relying on conventional
engineering interventions (such as seawalls), to adapt to and mitigate climate change effects,
while improving sustainable livelihoods and protecting natural ecosystems and biodiversity. IUCN actively promoted the NbS concept in
its 2009 position paper on the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)
COP 15, and in 2012 IUCN formally adopted NbS as one of the three areas of work within
its 2013–2016 Programme.At the IUCN World Conservation Congress 2016, IUCN Members agreed
on a definition of nature-based solutions. Nature-based Solutions are defined as “actions
to protect, sustainably manage, and restore natural or modified ecosystems that address
societal challenges effectively and adaptively, simultaneously providing human well-being
and biodiversity benefits”. Members also called for governments to include
nature-based solutions in strategies to combat climate change . A report, Nature-based solutions
to address global societal challenges, was launched at the Congress, and includes a set
of general principles for any NbS intervention.Implementing NbS at scale can help countries achieve the
targets of Sustainable Development Goals. It can also help them achieve the land degradation
neutrality goal of the UNCCD, the Aichi Biodiversity Targets of the CBD, and the Paris Agreement
on climate change. TimelineSome key dates in the growth and development
of IUCN:==Current work=====IUCN Programme 2017–2020===
According to its website, IUCN works on the following themes: business, climate change,
economics, ecosystems, environmental law, forest conservation, gender, global policy,
marine and polar, protected areas, science and knowledge, social policy, species, water
and world heritage.IUCN works on the basis of four-year programs, determined by the membership. In the IUCN Programme for 2017–2020 conserving
nature and biodiversity is inextricably linked to sustainable development and poverty reduction. IUCN states that it aims to have a solid factual
base for its work and takes into account the knowledge held by indigenous groups and other
traditional users of natural resources. The IUCN Programme 2017–2020 identifies
three priority areas:1. Valuing and conserving nature. 2. Promoting and supporting effective and equitable
governance of natural resources 3. Deploying Nature Based Solutions to address
societal challenges including climate change, food security and economic and social development.Unlike
other environmental organisations, IUCN does not itself aim to directly mobilize the general
public. Education has been part of IUCN’s work program
since the early days but the focus is on stakeholder involvement and strategic communication rather
than mass-campaigns.===
Habitats and species===IUCN runs field projects for habitat and species
conservation around the world. It produces the IUCN Red List of Threatened
Species and the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems which in a similar way measures risks to ecosystems. The IUCN Red List of Ecosystems is a global
standard to assess the conservation status of ecosystems. It is applicable at local, national, regional
and global levels. It is based on a set of rules, or criteria,
for performing evidence-based, scientific assessments of the risk of ecosystem collapse,
as measured by reductions in geographical distribution or degradation of the key processes
and components of ecosystems. IUCN participates in efforts to restore critically
endangered species. In 2012 it published a list of the world’s
100 most threatened species. It wants to expand the global network of national
parks and other protected areas and promote good management of such areas, for example
through the publication of the Green List of Protected and Conserved Areas. IUCN is the governing body responsible for
the development of the Protected Area Management Categories into which each protected area
is divided depending on its conservation requirements and management aims. It also developed a standard to identify Key
Biodiversity Areas — places of international importance for conservation. In particular, it focuses on greater protection
of the oceans and marine habitats. Examples of endangered species and threatened
habitats that are the focus of IUCN programs===
Business partnerships===IUCN has a growing program of partnerships
with the corporate sector to promote sustainable use of natural resources. Globally, IUCN collaborates with Black Mountain
Mining, Nespresso, Rio Tinto, Sakhalin Energy Investment Company Ltd, Shell, Shell Petroleum
Development Company of Nigeria, Ltd., the International Olympic Committee, Natural Capital
Coalition, Renova Foundation, Tiffany Foundation, the World Business Council for Sustainable
Development and others. At the national and regional level, IUCN also
works with Marriott International in Thailand, the Zambezi Valley Development Agency (ADPP)
in Mozambique, Minh Phu – the largest shrimp exporter in Vietnam, Xingzhitianxia Media
Company in China, the Secretariat of the Southern Agriculture Corridor of Tanzania (SAGCOT),
Tata Steel in India, Engro Elengy Terminal (Pvt) Ltd in Pakistan, to name a few.===National and international policy===
On the national level, IUCN helps governments prepare national biodiversity policies. Internationally, IUCN provides advice to environmental
conventions such as the Convention on Biological Diversity, CITES and the Framework Convention
on Climate Change. It advises UNESCO on natural world heritage. It has a formally accredited permanent observer
mission to the United Nations in New York. According to its own website, IUCN is the
only international observer organization in the UN General Assembly with expertise in
issues concerning the environment, specifically biodiversity, nature conservation and sustainable
natural resource use. IUCN has official relations with the Council
of Europe, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the International
Maritime Organization (IMO), the Organization of American States (OAS), the United Nations
Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP),
the UNEP World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC), the United Nations Educational,
Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the World Intellectual Property Organization
(WIPO) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).==Organizational structure==
As an organization, IUCN has three components: the member organizations, the six scientific
commissions, and the Dilip Ari===
Members===IUCN Members are states (making IUCN a supranational
GONGO), government agencies, international nongovernmental organizations, national nongovernmental
organizations, and indigenous peoples’ organisations. In 2017, IUCN had 1400 members. The members can organize themselves in national
or regional committees to promote cooperation. In 2016, there were 62 national committees
and 7 regional committees.===Commissions===
The six IUCN Commissions involve 16,000 volunteer experts from a range of disciplines. They ‘assess the state of the world’s natural
resources and provide the Union with sound know-how and policy advice on conservation
issues’. Commission on Education and Communication
(CEC): communication, learning and knowledge management in IUCN and the wider conservation
community. Members: over 1300
Commission on Environmental, Economic, and Social Policy (CEESP): economic and social
factors for the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity. Members: 1465. World Commission on Environmental Law (WCEL):
developing new legal concepts and instruments, and building the capacity of societies to
employ environmental law for conservation and sustainable development. Members: 800. Commission on Ecosystem Management (CEM):
integrated ecosystem approaches to the management of natural and modified ecosystems. Members: 1000. Species Survival Commission (SSC): technical
aspects of species conservation and action for species that are threatened with extinction. Members: 7500. World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA):
establishment and effective management of a network of terrestrial and marine protected
areas. Members: 1300.===Secretariat===
The Secretariat is led by the Director General. For management of its operations IUCN distinguishes
eight geographical regions; each is led by a director who reports to the Director General. The IUCN head office is in Gland, Switzerland. Eight regional offices implement IUCN’s program
in their respective territories. Since 1980, IUCN has established offices in
more than 50 countries. The total number of staff grew from 100 (1980)
to around 1,000 (2014); nearly all this growth was in the national and regional offices. Approximately 150 staff are based in the head
office.==Governance and funding=====
Governance===The World Conservation Congress (Members’
Assembly) is IUCN’s highest decision-making body. The Congress convenes every four years, most
recently in Hawaii (2016) and previously in Jeju, South Korea (2012). It elects the Council, including the President,
and approves IUCN’s workprogram for the next four years, and budget. The IUCN Council is the principal governing
body of IUCN. The Council provides strategic direction for
the activities of the Union, discusses specific policy issues and provides guidance on finance
and the membership development of the Union. The Council is composed of the President,
four Vice Presidents (elected by the Council from among its members), the Treasurer, the
Chairs of IUCN’s six Commissions, three Regional Councillors from each of IUCN’s eight Statutory
Regions and a Councillor from the State in which IUCN has its seat (Switzerland). IUCN’s current President is Zhang Xinsheng. The Council appoints a Director General, who
is responsible for the overall management of IUCN and the running of the Secretariat. Inger Andersen is IUCN Director General since
January 2015. She succeeded Julia Marton-Lefèvre.===Funding===
IUCN’s total income in 2013 was 114 million CHF, equaling approximately 95 million Euro
or 116 million US dollar. IUCN’s funding mainly comes from Official
Development Assistance budgets of bilateral and multilateral agencies. This represented 61% of its income in 2013. Additional sources of income are the membership
fees, as well as grants and project funding from foundations, institutions and corporations.==Influence and criticism=====
Influence===IUCN is considered one of the most influential
conservation organisations in the world and, together with World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)
and the World Resources Institute (WRI), is seen as a driving force behind the rise of
the influence of environmental organisations at the UN and around the world. It has established a network covering all
aspects of global conservation via its worldwide membership of governmental and non-governmental
organisations, the participation of experts in the IUCN Commissions, formal involvement
in international agreements, ties to intergovernmental organisations and increasingly partnerships
with international business. The World Conservation Congress and the World
Parks Congress events organised by IUCN are the largest gatherings of organisations and
individuals involved in conservation worldwide. They involve governmental organisations, NGOs,
media, academia and the corporate sector. According to some, IUCN is not only a major
global player in conservation action, but also has considerable influence in defining
what nature conservation actually is. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species and
the IUCN Red List of Ecosystems determine which species and natural areas merit protection. Through the Green List of Protected and Conserved
Areas and the system of IUCN protected area categories IUCN influences how protected areas
are managed.===Criticism===
The relevance of the scientific insights and the data that IUCN produces are not often
drawn into question, but IUCN has encountered criticism in other matters. It has been claimed that IUCN put the needs
of nature above those of humans, disregarding economic considerations and the interests
of indigenous peoples and other traditional users of the land. Until the 1980s IUCN favored the “Yellowstone
Model’ of conservation which called for the removal of humans from protected areas. The expulsion of the Maasai people from Serengeti
National Park and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area is perhaps the best known example of
this approach. This is linked to another criticism that has
been directed at IUCN, namely that throughout its history it has mainly been ‘Northern
focused’, i.e. had a West-European or North-American perspective on global conservation. Some critics point to the fact that many individuals
involved in the establishment of IUCN had been leading figures in the British Society
for the Preservation of the Wild Fauna of Empire, which wanted to protect species against
the impact of ‘native’ hunting pressure in order to safeguard hunting by Europeans. The fact that at least until the 1990s, most
of IUCN staff, the chairs of the Commissions and the IUCN President came from western countries
has also led to criticism. Over the past decade, IUCN has changed its
approach. It now aims to work in close cooperation with
indigenous groups. It has also become more regionalized in its
operations and more truly global in its staffing. At the 2016 World Conservation Congress, IUCN
introduced a new membership category for indigenous peoples’ organisations in recognition of
their role in conserving the planet. More recently, activist environmental groups
have argued that IUCN is too closely associated with governmental organisations and with the
commercial sector. IUCN’s cooperation with Shell came in for
criticism, also from its own membership. IUCN’s close partnership with Coca Cola in
Vietnam – where they have together been launching Coca-Cola-focused community centers
– has also drawn some criticism and allegations of greenwashing. Its decision to hold the 2012 World Conservation
Congress on Jeju Island, South Korea, where the local community and international environmental
activists were protesting against the construction of a navy base also led to controversy. IUCN remains committed to its partnerships
with the business sector, seeing sustainable development as the way to ensure long-term
protection of natural areas and species.==Publications==
IUCN has a wide range of publications, reports, guidelines and databases related to conservation
and sustainable development. It publishes or co-authors more than 100 books
and major assessments every year, along with hundreds of reports, documents and guidelines. In 2015, 76 IUCN articles were published in
peer reviewed scientific journals.A report, released at the IUCN World Parks Congress
in Sydney on 13 November 2014 showed that the 209,000 conservation reserves around the
world now cover 15.4 per cent of the total land area. The new figures are a step in the right direction
of protecting 17 percent of land and 10 percent of ocean environments on Earth by 2020 since
an agreement between the world’s nations at the Convention on Biological Diversity, held
in Japan in 2010.At its World Conservation Congress in Hawaii in 2016, the IUCN launched
a report Explaining ocean warming: causes, scale, effects and consequences, one of the
most comprehensive reviews to date on ocean warming.==See also==
List of conservation organisations List of environmental organizations
IUCN protected area categories==Footnotes

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  1. Hey, Awesome content on conservation, it’s such an important topic! I Would be interested to see what you thought of our trip to see the horrendous effects palm oil harvesting has had the on orangutan of Borneo

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