Biodiversity Evening Dialogue "Make Space for Nature" - 02 March 2010 | WWF

Biodiversity Evening Dialogue "Make Space for Nature" - 02 March 2010

Posted on
03 March 2010
2010 is the United Nations International Year of Biodiversity. Important decisions on the future vision and targets for nature will be taken at the European Union level. These decisions will crucially affect businesses and the economy, the well-being of citizens, as well as the protection of nature itself, for the next decade.

In Brussels on Tuesday 2 March, WWF organised an evening dialogue on biodiversity. We called the evening ‘Make Space for Nature’ to highlight the need to act positively to protect nature. We showed the actions that are needed at policy and business level to give a proper value to the ‘ecosystem’ services which sustain life on Earth but which are wrongly treated as if they are free.

The event was moderated by HRH Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands. It included high level speakers from: Janez Potočnik - the new Environment Commissioner; Pavan Sukhdev - leader of the study on the Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity and Head of the United Nations Green Economy Initiative; Jacqueline McGlade - Executive Director of the European Environment Agency; Jo Leinen MEP, Chairman of the European Parliament’s Environment, Public Health and Food Security Committee; Salvatore Gabola - Head of Public Affairs for Coca-Cola Europe; and, Tony Long - Director of the WWF European Policy Office in Brussels.

350 people attended the event, including European Commission and Council officials, Members of the European Parliament, officials from the Permanent Representations of the 27 Member States regional authorities and local governments as well as representatives of civil society and leaders from the business sector. Commissioner Potočnik delivered his inaugural speech as the new Environment Commissioner on the theme of protecting nature calling on us all to save “the natural engine for our future.”

WWF urged participants to call for a massive political effort to put biodiversity much higher on the political agenda.We appeal to political leaders in the International Year of Biodiversity - and for the next decade - to stand up for real ambition, real integration and real financing required to ‘Make Space for Nature!’