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World ‘will miss biodiversity protection targets’

More research is urgently needed to guide effective management of the world’s national parks and protected areas, a UN Environment Programme report has said.

The UNEP report warns that protected areas “will not work as isolated elements in human-dominated landscapes”. It says pressures on national parks and other protected areas are increasing as a result of threats that include urban development, population growth, climate change, mining and wildlife crime.

The Protected Planet report, which monitors global efforts to support and expand protected areas, was launched in Sydney on 13 November at the World Parks Congress. The meeting is convened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, and is held every 10 years to discuss challenges facing management of protected areas.

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