'Species 2000' is the latest
UN/World Bank venture to
take an integrated look at
the world's biodiversity.
The current tally puts the
total number of plants,
animals, fungi and other
microorganisms at about
13.5 million species; estimates had varied
anywhere between seven to 20 million.
The new venture proposes to create a
unified data system covering all existing
species and will provide species information to the signatory countries to the biodiversity convention. It will be spearheaded
by Frank Bisby, leader of the biodiversity and bioinformatics research group in
Southampton University's School of
Biological Sciences in UK.
Things may just about look up for the beleaguered UN after the US decision to pay its dues to the world body for the current year. Madeleine Albright, the US ambassador to the UN announced at Norway on April 26 that her country, which owes more than US $1 billion to the UN, has voted to contribute its share for the 1996 fiscal year. However, attached to its decision to pay up is the condition that the UN must limit its spending to within a budget of US $2,608 billion for a period of two years.
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