Last July 2018 two new areas were recognised as UNESCO Biosphere Reserves in Italy: the Valle Camonica – Alto Sebino Biosphere Reserve and the Ticino, Val Grande Verbano Biosphere Reserve, which has been extended. This is an important step towards the promotion of solutions reconciling the conservation of biodiversity with its sustainable use.
The Valle Camonica – Alto Sebino Biosphere Reserve is located in Lombardy and includes also some territory of the Parco dell’ Adamello. The area is characterized by typical Alpine and pre-Alpine valleys, ranging from valley bottom landscapes to the highest peaks of Europe and the Adamello Glacier, and ending in Lake Iseo, one of Italy’s largest basins.
The Val Ticino Biosphere was created in 2002. Last July it was extended to include the Val Grande Verbano area. The area is located in the north of Italy, at the meeting point of the culturally rich regions of Lombardy and Piedmont. The enlarged Biosphere also includes territories of the Val Grande National Park, areas close to Lake Maggiore and its municipalities as far as the Swiss border. The reserve functions as an important ecological corridor within the urbanized and industrialized Po plain.
The main role of the UNESCO Biosphere reserves is to harmonize conservation of biological and cultural diversity and economic and social development through partnerships between people and nature. In general, the UNESCO Biosphere reserves play a key role in the transition to green development, in particular for sustainable tourism.