The International Union for Conservation of Nature is basically an organization that works for the conservation of nature and sensible use of the resources gifted by nature. IUCN collects data, researchers and analyses, conducts field projects, advocates and educates people about the importance and methods of nature conservation.
Basic information about IUCN
The International Union for Conservation of Nature was founded in the year 1948, on 5th October in France’s Fontainebleau. Its headquarters are located in Switzerland. The earlier name of the organization was the International Union for Protection of Nature from 1948 to 1956. In between 1990 and 2008, the organization was known as the World Conservation Union. The total number of IUCN members is 1400.
The noble mission of IUCN is to encourage, influence and provide assistance to nations all over the world for the conservation of nature and to make sure that the natural resources are not exploited relentlessly by humans but used sustainably.
Foundation history of IUCN
A formal act was signed by representatives of conservation organizations and governments which constituted the IUPN (International Union for the Protection of Nature). UNESCO took the initiative to set up a new organization for conservation of nature. In this respect, the contribution of Julian Huxley, the British Biologist and UNESCO’s first ever Director General. The aims of IUPN were to encourage cooperation among nations for nature’s protection and to promote fruitful action all over the world.
In its initial stage, IUPN had only 65 members. The first project that the organization worked on was the saving of habitats and species, advancing education as well as promoting international agreements for conservation. There was a close association between UNESCO and IUPN. In the year 1949, the Conference on Protection of Nature was jointly organized by these two bodies.
Role of IUCN from 1956 to 2000
The first international list of protected areas and National Parks was prepared by IUCN in 1961. In the year 1969, The Ford Foundation gave IUCN a grant that helped it in boosting its global secretariat. When UNESCO adopted the Conservation Concerning the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritage, IUCN was invited for providing monitoring and technical evaluations. In 1980, UNESCO and IUCN joined hands for publishing a World Conservation Strategy. It was launched globally in 35 countries on 5th March. The strategy was continued in 1982 in the form of the World Charter for Nature which IUCN prepared and the United Nations General Assembly adopted. Caring for the Earth was published by IUCN in 1991 along with WWF and UNEP.
The contribution of IUCN in the past seventeen years
In 2003, the IUCN Global Business and Biodiversity Program or BBP was introduced with the aim of influencing and supporting private partners to address social and environmental issues. 2004 was the year of development of the first Private Sector Engagement Strategy by IUCN. In 2012, a list of the 100 most endangered species in the world was published by IUCN. In 2016, IUCN has created a new membership category in order to support the native people’s organizations.