3 August 2021 Bees Welcomed to the United Nations Headquarters in Vienna

Photo Credit: UNIS Vienna

Two beehives and one insect hotel were set up on 4 June 2021, at the United Nations headquarters in Vienna to launch the Bee Blue Project.

Around 50,000 honeybees will be living in the beehives on the grounds of the Vienna International Centre and wild bees will use the insect hotel. The installation will give a home to bees, one of the key pollinators in our ecosystem, threatened by pesticides and changing land use.

The project was initiated by the Sustainable & Innovative Initiatives Club at the UN in Vienna along with the City of Vienna’s Environment Department - MA22 (Wiener Umweltschutzabteilung). The Vienna Beekeeping School in the Danube Park is a key partner, and the project is supported by the Vienna Office of the UN Environment Programme and the Permanent Missions of Slovenia and Ireland.

Director-General of the United Nations Office at Vienna (UNOV), Ghada Waly, said: “The UN Office at Vienna is proud to contribute with Bee Blue, creating a home for bees at the Vienna International Centre and promoting the protection of these pollinators. Vienna was the first of the UN headquarters to become climate-neutral and sustainability continues to guide us in all that we do.”

The initiative to install beehives at the UN Headquarters in Vienna is aligned with the United Nations Decade on Ecosystems Restoration (2021-2030) which was launched globally on World Environment Day, 5 June 2021.

The bees will be kept by a professional beekeeper, while the insect hotels and feeding grounds will be supervised by the City of Vienna’s Environment Department, at no cost to the Vienna International Centre. The honey produced by the bees will be sold by the Sustainable & Innovative Initiatives Club.

“We’re delighted to welcome the bees to the UN Headquarters in Vienna, and we consider it an invitation to the whole world to pay more attention to the small animals and plants who help to sustain our planet. We owe tiny species a lot,” said Elodie Broussard, initiator and leader of the Bee Blue project with Fabien Petit.

Head of the UN Environment Programme Vienna Office, Harald Egerer, said: "Bees provide much more than just precious honey – they are important for ecosystem functions, food security, improved nutrition and sustainable agriculture."

We are bringing wild bee habitats, honeybee hives and flowers to the UN compound in Vienna – a great symbol of connecting people and nature on World Environment Day 2021, kicking off the United Nations Decade on Ecosystem Restoration.”

For more information, please contact:

  • Elodie Broussard, President & Co-founder UN Vienna -Sustainable & innovative initiatives Club | [email protected] | T: (+43-1) 2600-22099
  • Fabien Petit, Secretary & Co-founder UN Vienna -Sustainable & innovative initiatives Club | [email protected] | T: (+43-1) 2600-25988
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