Policy ForumEcology

Biodiversity Conservation and the Millennium Development Goals

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Science  18 Sep 2009:
Vol. 325, Issue 5947, pp. 1502-1503
DOI: 10.1126/science.1175035

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Summary

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are designed to inspire efforts to improve people's lives by, among other priorities, halving extreme poverty by 2015 (1). Analogously, concern about global decline in biodiversity and degradation of ecosystem services (2) gave rise in 1992 to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The CBD target “to achieve by 2010 a significant reduction of the current rate of biodiversity loss” was incorporated into the MDGs in 2002. Our lack of progress toward the 2010 target (3, 4) could undermine achievement of the MDGs and poverty reduction in the long term. With increasing global challenges, such as population growth, climate change, and overconsumption of ecosystem services, we need further integration of the poverty alleviation and biodiversity conservation agendas.