Jabal Moussa Biosphere Reserve in Lebanon: a growing innovative model in West Asia

07 September 2011 | News story

In 2007, the Association for the Protection of Jabal Moussa (APJM) (www.jabalmoussa.org) and many local experts joined efforts to protect the pristine landscape of Jabal Moussa Mountain of Kesrwan-Lebanon which was being exposed to major threats from human activities.

In 2009, their efforts lead to the designation of Jabal Moussa and its surrounding villages (6500 ha) as a Biosphere Reserve under the UNESCO international MAB program, becoming one of the 553 Biosphere Reserves in the world (2009). The same year, based on an AROCHA study, Jabal Moussa Biosphere Reserve was designated a Global Important Bird Area (IBA) due to its important value for migratory birds.
In November 2010 -3 years after its establishment- APJM proudly joined the world’s largest international community of environmental experts: IUCN. By becoming a member of IUCN, APJM joined efforts with the world’s leading experts to achieve better biodiversity management and conservation.
The following report summarizes the work achieved in the first 2 years of designation of Jabal Moussa as a Biosphere Reserve, and defines the lines of work for the coming 10 years. It has been prepared at the occasion of the 40th Anniversary of the UNESCO MAB program. The report shows that the results achieved for the Jabal Moussa Biosphere Reserve in such a short period of time are impressive and unusual, which reflects a promising future for becoming an innovative model for biosphere reserves in the region, and maybe internationally.