The Need for Training
Earthwatch's Capacity Development Programme funds practical field experience and scientific training opportunities for promising young scientists and conservationists in Africa, Eastern Europe, and Southern Asia.
By providing these opportunities, Earthwatch addresses a key need cited in the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Kyoto Protocol, and the Millennium Development Goals: the need for conservation career development in emerging countries. The programme therefore serves to build conservation capacity - the capacity of individuals to become future conservation leaders in their native countries and of institutions to be more effective stewards of their country's rich and irreplaceable biodiversity.
See below for the global agendas objectives that the Capacity Development Programme is addressing:
Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)
Signed at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 the Convention on Biological Diversity is an international treaty with the main objective of developing national strategies to conserve biological diversity. Some of the articles addressed by the Capacity Development Programme are:
- Article 7 - Identification and Monitoring
- Article 8 - In-situ Conservation
- Article 12 - Research Training
(a) Establish and maintain programmes for scientific and technical education in measures for the identification, conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity and its components and provide support for such education and training for the specific needs of developing countries.
- Article 13 - Public Education and Awareness
- Article 17 - Exchange of Information
- Article 18 - Technical and Scientific Cooperation
Agenda 21 - United Nations Conference on Environment and Development
Revealed at the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development back in 1992, Agenda 21 is a blueprint for achieving sustainable development and promotes action globally and locally from governmental and non-governmental bodies. Some of the chapters addressed by the Capacity Development Programme are:
- Chapter 35 - Science for sustainable development
- Chapter 36 - Promoting education, public awareness and training
- Chapter 37 - National mechanisms and international cooperation for capacity-building in developing countries
- Chapter 37.3 - The overall objectives of endogenous capacity-building in this programme area are to develop and improve national and related subregional and regional capacities and capabilities for sustainable development, with the involvement of the non-governmental sectors.
Millennium Development Goals
To be achieved by 2015, the eight Millennium Development Goals represent an international call to action with the primary goal of reducing poverty. As the environment and the services that it provides is a key factor that can lock people into the cycle of poverty its inclusion as one of the Millennium Development Goals is essential. The work of the Capacity Development Programme contributes to Goal number 7 of the MDG's.
- Goal 7 - Ensure Environmental Sustainability. Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programmes; reverse loss of environmental resources.
Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement which aims to combat the threat of climate change. It has many facets, one of which the Capacity Development Programme contributes to is article 10 below:
- Article 10e - Cooperate in and promote at the international level, and, where appropriate, using existing bodies, the development and implementation of education and training programmes, including the strengthening of national capacity development, in particular human and institutional capacities and the exchange or secondment of personnel to train experts in this field, in particular for developing countries, and facilitate at the national level public awareness of, and public access to information on, climate change.
IUCN - Protected Area Conservation Strategy (PARCS): Training Needs and Opportunities Among Protected Area Managers in Eastern, Central and Southern Africa.
The Protected Area Conservation Strategy report highlighted a number of areas where lack of training was a hindrance to effective protected area management.
"Many managers expressed a need for more training in techniques for undertaking biological inventories and collecting ecological data."