Bees thrive at the United Nations in Geneva
Bees are increasingly under threat from human activities, and yet pollination is a fundamental process for the survival of the world’s ecosystems.
Nearly 90 percent of the world’s wild flowering plant species depend wholly or partially on animal pollination, along with more than 75 percent of the world’s food crops and 35 percent of global agricultural land. Pollinators both contribute directly to food security and play a crucial role in conserving biodiversity.
To raise awareness of the importance of pollinators, the threats they face and their contribution to sustainable development, the UN designated 20 May as World Bee Day.
The goal is to strengthen measures aimed at protecting bees and other pollinators, which would significantly contribute to solving problems related to the global food supply and eliminate hunger in developing countries.
Recognising the vital and symbolic significance of bees, the Swiss Ministry of Foreign Affairs donated an apiary to the United Nations in 2012, as part of the country’s celebration of 10 years of membership in the world body.
The bee hives have since been part of the historic Ariana Park In Geneva, Switzerland where the UN’s premises at the Palais des Nations are located, and produce hundreds of kilograms of honey every year.
Each of the hives is decorated in the national colours of Switzerland and bears an inscription of a UN objective.
Switzerland became the 190th member of the UN 18 years ago, in 2002. During the 10th anniversary celebrations the Swiss Foreign Ministry released a statement saying that it had joined the UN to champion its values, including the promotion of human rights, democracy, peace, the fight against poverty and the protection of the environment and natural resources.