by Daniel Maza
“Biological diversity must be treated more seriously as a global resource, to be indexed, used and above all, preserved. Overall, we are locked into a race. we must hurry to acquire the knowledge on which a wise policy of conservation and development can be based for centuries to come”.
– E.O Wilson
The United Nations proclaimed May 22 as the International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB) with the goal to increase understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues. This year’s slogan “We’re part of the solution”, was chosen to be a continuation of the momentum generated last year under the over-arching theme, “Our solutions are in nature”, which served as a reminder that biodiversity remains the answer to several sustainable development challenges. From nature-based solutions to climate, health issues, food and water security, and sustainable livelihoods, biodiversity is the foundation upon which we can build back better.
However, today, we would like to not just celebrate the vast array of biological varieties on the planet, but also pay homage to the beauty of the evolutionary nature that has brought us to this point in history, like the one illustrated in the video below.
Biological diversity includes a great variety of existing animals, plants, microorganisms and their variations. All these biological resources have sustained our way of life since its origins. However, the loss of resources is a threat in all, due to its interconnectedness. The deterioration or extinction of one form of life, ecosystem or natural resource, can have a great effect on the survival of another form of life. In this context, cases of zoonosis are shown as a direct cause of the loss of diversity, meaning that diseases transmitted from animals to humans can increase, such as the Coronavirus. Pandemics, and all sorts of diseases, can be avoided by preserving biodiversity.
Excessive logging, indiscriminate hunting and fishing, the use of fossil fuels, plastic pollution and other non-biodegradable objects in natural spaces are some of the myriad causes behind the accelerated and silent agonizing death of the biodiversity that affects our planet earth.
Although today we are indeed more aware of the problems, things don’t seem to be changing. Species continue to decrease at a faster rate due to overconsumption and overexploitation.
On a day as special as today, we want to take part in “being part of the solution”. The natural world is calling for us. Are you going to listen?