By Dr. Nirmal Jivan Shah
“If we want solutions from nature then we need a next-generation overhaul of biodiversity conservation”, says Dr. Nirmal Jivan Shah on the International Day of Biodiversity. The theme this year is “Our Solutions are in Nature”, and as the world reels from the impacts of the pandemic Shah says that this is an opportune time to map the content of this next-gen conservation.
It's a hot day on Cousin Island Special Reserve. Seychelles is on a 21-day lockdown due to COVID-19 and everyone is at home social-distancing. On the sand, a warden sits counting the empty shells of Hawksbill turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata) eggs, the contents of a recently hatched nest. Next to him, the conservation officer keeps a record: whole shells, fragments, unhatched eggs, and dead hatchlings.
Nature Seychelles' Chief Executive Dr. Nirmal Shah is one of ten MPA practitioners worldwide who have given their first-hand reports on the impacts of COVID19 and the Financial crisis on marine protected areas.
Over 200 of the world's conservation and animal groups have written to the World Health Organization (WHO) calling on it to ask countries to take a highly precautionary approach to the multi-billion dollar wildlife trade and put a permanent ban on all live wildlife markets and the use of wildlife in traditional medicine.