What is biodiversity and why is it important?

In recent years, biodiversity has been decreasing significantly, and it is now considered a global crisis. The diversity of living organisms is being limited, particularly by human activities.

What is biodiversity?

Biodiversity is a measure of the variety of life within species, between species, and between ecosystems and geographic areas to which they belong. A measure of the biodiversity of an area is how rich it is in a particular group of species. Biodiversity is often an indicator of the health of an ecosystem. Climate is associated with biodiversity, so tropical areas are more species-rich than, for example, polar areas.

Why is biodiversity important?

One of the essential needs in life is a healthy ecosystem. Biodiversity provides a good quality soil, clean water, clean air, and pollination of crops. Bacteria and other living organisms, for example, provide healthy soil for plants by breaking down organic material into nutrients. Pollinators ensure the reproduction of plants, which guarantee human food supply. Lastly, plants convert solar energy and make it available for other life forms.

The loss of biodiversity

Living organisms are connected within their ecosystems and geographic areas. This means that the disappearance of one species can have an impact on our food chain. It is a domino effect where more and more animals and plants are becoming extinct. The main reasons for the loss of biodiversity are:

  • Exploitation or harvesting, such as fishing and hunting
  • Pollution
  • Change in land use, such as urbanization and deforestation
  • Climate change
  • Invasion of non-native species

European Parliament measures

The proposal for the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 was approved by the Commission on May 20, 2020. Some important actions that must be carried out by 2030 were discussed on May 20:

  • Protected areas covering at least 30% of the EU's land and sea area must be created.
  • A budget allocation of €20 billion per year must be available to protect and promote biodiversity. This promotion can be achieved through EU funds and private and national resources.
  • Restore damaged ecosystems in the EU through specific agreements and measures.
  • An ambitious global biodiversity framework must be established.

TakeAware and responsible forest management

Many of our paper, cardboard, and wooden disposables contain the FSC® certification. This certification stands for responsible forest management, which takes into account biodiversity. It also offers a range of benefits compared to unregulated natural forest deforestation. The forest is divided into sections, and trees are harvested in a different section each year, allowing the forest to recover. This creates space for regrowth, and young trees absorb more CO2 than old trees.

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