Students Learn about Biodiversity through a Video Link to Japan!
November 3, 2010 § Leave a comment
2010 is of course the International Year of Biodiversity and this week the zoo has once again been helping to highlight the importance of saving the world’s huge variety of animals, plants and habitats from extinction. Pupils from all over Scotland came to Edinburgh Zoo on Wednesday to take part in this year’s annual global classroom conference. This year the event was centred on biodiversity with a live web link to the Convention on Biological Diversity which was taking place in Japan.
Biodiversity refers to the variety of life on earth and as more and more species and habitats are destroyed the biodiversity of our planet is threatened. The IUCN red list announcement made on the same day as the zoo’s global classroom conference indicated that there are more species than ever at risk of extinction.
Over 100 pupils visited the zoo’s education centre to learn more about the importance of biodiversity. They were able to take part in debates regarding issues that affect biodiversity, how the world’s biodiversity can be protected and how we value our natural resources. The pupils found out about how the worlds natural resources can be exploited; for example how beauty products and medicines contain products sourced from developing nations who may be rich in biodiversity and the raw ingredients that they supply but they do not receive fair prices or support with the profits generated from their resources.
During one of the interactive workshops that the students took part in they were able to hear first hand from two IUCN delegates, via a live web link from Japan, exactly what was currently happening at the Convention on Biological Diversity in Nagoya. The Convention of Biological Diversity was set up following the Rio Earth Summit in 1992 and the meeting in Nagoya was the tenth meeting of the conference in which officials from 192 countries and the European Union met to agree on how to manage and conserve the world’s biodiversity.
Polly Phillpot, Senior Education Officer for RZSS said:
“RZSS has been celebrating International Year of Biodiversity with various events throughout the year in an effort to raise public awareness on this important subject.”
“This year’s global classroom event was designed to help young people discover the importance of all aspects of biodiversity, from a single species to an entire ecosystem. We hope that the pupils who attended today will leave with a greater understanding not only of what biodiversity means, but what they can do as individuals to help combat biodiversity loss and make other people aware of the issues.”