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The World Conservation Union: What do they do?
The World Conservation Union is not one of the better known environmental groups but they are one of the most successful. The reason for this success is that they take a realistic approach to addressing environmental problems. Unlike some other organizations that make completely unrealistic demands the World Conservation Union works to come up with solutions that will preserve biodiversity while at the same time recognizing the needs of the human population.
The main goal of the World Conservation Union is to conserve biodiversity. In particular it is to demonstrate the importance of biodiversity as it relates to climate change, sustainable energy and human welfare. Clearly this is a big mandate which raises the question of just how do they go about doing it? The answer is a three pronged approach at addressing the problem, with the goal of creating realistic solutions.
The first part of the World Conservation Union strategy is science. They sponsor many scientists in their work and they provide information to many others. The goal here is to gather as much information as possible. The more we know about biodiversity the better our chances of addressing it so there is a great deal of effort put into this. One of the most well known aspects of the World Conservation Union has come out of this. The Red List of Threatened Species is considered to be the definitive list when it comes to animals that are in danger of extinction.
One of the biggest things that the World Conservation Union does is to actually take action to preserve biodiversity. There are hundreds of projects currently underway in dozens of different countries that are aimed at preserving biodiversity. These projects are not simply about preserving a specific species. One of the reasons that projects like these tend to fail is that they usually fail to take into consideration the needs of the people who live in the area or the needs of society to make use of the resources. Therefore the projects are designed to balance the needs of conserving biodiversity and the people who reside in the area.
The third part of the strategy of the World Conservation Union strategy is to influence the decision makers. While there are certainly things that can be done by independent agencies ultimately nothing is going to really change unless government is on board. That means that it is necessary to lobby the politicians and to educate them on the importance of biodiversity. This is done through more than a thousand organizations that are affiliated with the World Conservation Union. The hope is that laws will be changed and the international agreements will be reached that recognize the importance of biodiversity so that real action can be taken. This is critical if real progress is going to be made.