International Day for Biological Diversity- 22 May

The 22nd of May marks 25 years of the entry into force of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The convention has a near universal membership of 195 countries. It entered into force on 29 December 1993. Zimbabwe ratified the convention on 11 November 1994 and became a party to the convention on 9 February 1995.

The day was proclaimed to increase understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues. This year’s commemoration was done in the form of a discussion forum organised by UNESCO Regional Office for Southern Africa in partnership with United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) and Ministry of Environment, Water and Climate, underthe theme ’25 Years of Action for Biodiversity’.

The Convention on Biological Diversity was inspired by the world community’s growing commitment to sustainable development. It represents a dramatic step forward in the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components, and the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the use of genetic resources.  

Since entering into force, the Convention has been implemented through the vision and leadership displayed by countries, non-governmental and inter-governmental organizations, indigenous peoples and local communities, the scientific community and individuals alike.

Zimbabwe is rich in biodiversity in its varied landscapes and aquatic ecosystem. It has about 5,930 vascular plant species, of which 214 are endemic, 670 bird species, 270 mammal species, 256 reptile species, 120 amphibian species, and 151 fish species. These species are found within and outside protected areas.

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Frequently Asked Questions on EIA

What is an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA?)

An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is a process which identifies the environmental impacts of a development project and clearly outlines measures to mitigate the negative impacts caused during  project construction, implementation and  decommissioning.

The purpose of the assessment is to ensure that decision makers consider the environmental impacts when deciding whether or not to proceed with a project. The International Association for Impact Assessment (IAIA) defines an environmental impact assessment as "the process of identifying, predicting, evaluating and mitigating the biophysical, social, and other relevant effects of development proposals prior to major decisions being taken and commitments made. EIAs require decision ­makers to account for environmental values in their decisions and to justify those decisions in light of detailed environmental studies and public comments on potential environmental impacts.

What is the EIA legislative policy?

The Environmental Management Act (CAP 20:27) of 2002 and Statutory Instrument 7 of 2007 (Environmental Impact Assessment and Ecosystems Protection) state that prescribed projects listed under the first schedule of the EMA Act (Cap 20:27) should undergo an EIA prior to implementation.

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    To regulate, monitor and promote sustainable management of natural resources and protection of the environment with stakeholder participation.

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