The World Conservation Strategy

The World Conservation Strategy was published by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) in 1980. Its main objectives are:
(a) to maintain essential ecological processes and life support systems,
(b) to preserve genetic diversity, and
(c) to ensure the sustainable utilization of species and ecosystems.

It is said that the concept of ‘sustainable development’ first appeared in the WCS. This document stresses the importance of development within “the reality of resource limitation and the carrying capacities of ecosystems.” While the Brundtland report (1987), which proffers the famous definition of sustainable development, has a strong concentration on the satisfaction of human needs, the WCS is primarily concerned with ecological sustainability. Since the publication of the WCS, many countries have prepared national conservation strategies. Also the concept of conservation of genetic diversity influenced formulation of the Convention on Biological Diversity (1992).

Among the priorities for national action that the WCS identifies are ‘improving the capacity to manage’ both in terms of ‘legislation and organisation’ and also ‘training and research’.

Timeline entry contributed by Ai Kaibu