Biosphere Reserves are areas of terrestrial and coastal / marine ecosystems, where, through appropriate zoning and management, the conservation of ecosystems and their biodiversity are combined with the sustainable use of natural resources for the benefit of local communities. This includes relevant research, monitoring, education and training. All the above are tools for implementing Agenda 21, the Convention on Biological Diversity and other international agreements.
The areas all have multiple functions. The zoning includes a core area, a buffer zone and an outer transition area. The outer boundary is always flexible.
There are (in May 2002) 408 Biosphere Reserves in 94 countries.
For a full list of all Biosphere Reserves in the world, see: