India is all set to co-chair the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)-supported Asia Protected Areas Partnership (APAP), a regional forum to conserve wildlife habitats for three years. In this tenure India will assist other Asian countries in managing their protected areas.
- India will replace South Korea which held this position for three years till November, 2020. Notably APAP is chaired by IUCN Asia and co-chaired by an APAP country member.
- India got this opportunity after successfully increasing the population of wild animals such as tigers, lions and leopards through protecting their habitats.
Formally launched at the IUCN World Parks Congress in Australia in 2014, it is a platform that enables collaboration to help governments and other stakeholders for more effective management of protected areas (PA).
- Members: 21 from 17 countries.
- 17 Member Countries are – Thailand, Viet Nam, Laos, Maldives, Malaysia, China, Republic of Korea, Sri Lanka, India, Cambodia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Bhutan, Mongolia, Nepal, Bangladesh, Japan.
India’s Success Story:
–The number of Leopards grew 62% in 4 years. It was 7,910 in 2014 and increased to 12,852 in 2018.
–The highest number of Leopards are in Madhya Pradesh (3,421) followed by Karnataka (1,783) and Maharashtra (1,690).
–The tiger population is also doubled in 12 years from 1,411 in 2006 to 2,967 in 2018.
–India is a home to 75% of the tiger’s global population.
–India also recorded 29% increase in population of Asiatic Lions, living in Gujarat Gir Forest, in the past five years from 523 in 2015 to 674 in 2020.
–The number of other species such as snow leopard, Great Indian Bustard, Indian Gangetic Dolphin is also increased.
Recent Related News:
i.On 23 November, 2020 to mark the 10 anniversary of “Tigers times two” or TX2 under the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to double the population of the tiger, two categories of awards were distributed. Philibhit Tiger Reserve (PTR) and Uttar Pradesh Forest Department from India have won the first International award TX2.
ii.A 1,500-sq. km. conservation area straddling the India-Bhutan border namely “Transboundary Manas Conservation Area or TraMCA” has received the Conservation Excellence Award for 2020.TraMCA is comprising of the 500 sq. km. Manas National Park in Assam and the 1,057-sq. km. Royal Manas National Park in Bhutan.
About International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN):
IUCN Council President– Xinsheng Zhang
Headquarter– Gland, near Geneva, Switzerland