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Concern expressed over state of biodiversity

Switzerland has to make amends for its shortcomings in protecting its flora and fauna, its Environment Minister has said on International Biodiversity Day.

This content was published on May 22, 2010 - 15:07

Non-governmental organisations have also been sounding the alarm about Swiss biodiversity, including releasing a survey which found that a majority of the population wanted more action on the issue.

In a statement, Environment Minister Moritz Leuenberger said that some progress had been made in protecting nature, such as in setting up special reserves and in the drawing up of a strategy conforming to United Nations’ standards.

More measures should follow after the summer, said the minister. This includes possible compensation for farmers for environmental protection efforts.

Switzerland has previously come under fire from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) over its biodiversity loss.

Nature protection groups have been using International Biodiversity Day, in this Year of Biodiversity, to issue warnings. WWF Switzerland called it, a “day of sadness” because four out of ten animal species are under threat in the country.

Meanwhile, a poll by Pro Natura found that more than 60 per cent of the population considered the nature legacy for the next generation “catastrophic” or “worrying”. A similar percentage said that the government and cantons should do more to stop biodiversity loss.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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