The Wildlife Conservation Society and the German Federal Foreign Office held a one-day conference in Berlin on Oct. 25: “One Planet, One Health, One Future.” The conference, which included top minds from around the globe, addressed how human development and interference with nature are generating threats to humans, livestock, and wildlife.
The Berlin Principles
Among the outcomes, a strategic document—The Berlin Principles—was released. This release follows on The Manhattan Principles, which were developed in 2004.
"No one discipline or sector of society holds enough knowledge and resources to single-handedly prevent the emergence or resurgence of diseases while maintaining and improving the health and well-being of all species in today’s globalized world. No one country can reverse the patterns of land-use change, marine degradation, carbon release, soil degradation, environmental pollution, and species extinctions that, if left unmitigated, undermine the health of people and wildlife. Intensive work within each discipline is essential to develop expertise.” —The Berlin Principles
From left to right: WCS's Chris Walzer and Cristian Samper, Sir Andrew Haines, Minister of State Niels Annen, Sabine Gabrysch, Maike Voss, Lothar Wieler.
In his remarks, WCS President and CEO Cristian Samper emphasized:
- Biodiversity conservation, specifically intact ecosystems, are critical foundations for present and future health and wellbeing.
- Fifteen years ago, WCS and its partners crafted the foundational Manhattan Principles on One Health. The effort in Berlin is to strengthen, update, and firmly reassert the broad, multi-sectoral and trans-disciplinary nature of the One Health approach.
- We need to create and increase trans-sectoral funding streams—significant opportunities to improve global health through environmental investments.
There is an urgent need to simultaneously address the health of people and animals, recognizing that disease poses challenges to both conservation of the planet's biodiversity and efforts to improve the quality of human life. Read more about our approach.
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