India’s Ashok Khosla is IUCN’s new president

October 13th, 2008 - 6:05 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi Oct 13 (IANS) Indian environmentalist Ashok Khosla has been elected president of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), during its World Conservation Congress in Barcelona, the IUCN said Monday.Khosla defeated Purificació Canals of Spain and Carlos Manuel Rodríguez from Costa Rica in the presidential run-off, the international NGO said in an e-mailed statment.

Khosla is chairman of New Delhi-based NGO Development Alternatives, which promotes commercially-viable, environment-friendly technologies for rural communities in developing countries. He was earlier a director in the United Nations Environment Programme.

Khosla will take over from Valli Moosa, who took up the post four years ago. IUCN has over 1,000 governments and NGOs among its members, and some 10,000 volunteer scientists in more than 150 countries.

“Given its critical role in maintaining life - and the systems that support life - conservation of biodiversity now needs at least the same level of attention that other global environmental issues have garnered,” Khosla said after his election.

“This will have to be mobilized not only by international agencies and governments but also by the scientific community, civil society and the public at large. We must form new partnerships among the best institutions to bring together their different insights and to generate meaningful solutions that deal effectively with the inter-related issues of population, natural resources, environment and development.”

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