International Day for Biological Diversity
اليوم الدولي للتنوع البيولوجي
When : 22 May 2019
The Value of Biodiversity
While there is a growing recognition that biological diversity is a global asset of tremendous value to present and future generations, the number of species is being significantly reduced by certain human activities.
2019 Theme: Our Biodiversity, Our Food, Our Health ||
Nowadays, we have access to a greater variety of food than your parents or your grandparents once did. But even as the offerings become more diverse, the global diet as a whole – what people actually eat – is becoming more homogenized, and this is a dangerous thing.
This year’s celebrations of the International Day for Biological Diversity focus on biodiversity as the foundation for our food and health and a key catalyst to transforming food systems and improving human health.
The theme aims to leverage knowledge and spread awareness of the dependency of our food systems, nutrition, and health on biodiversity and healthy ecosystems. The theme also celebrates the diversity provided by our natural systems for human existence and well-being on Earth, while contributing to other Sustainable Development Goals, including climate change mitigation and adaptation, ecosystems restoration, cleaner water and zero hunger, among others.
In the last 100 years, more than 90 percent of crop varieties have disappeared from farmers’ fields. Half of the breeds of many domestic animals have been lost, and all of the world’s 17 main fishing grounds are now being fished at or above their sustainable limits. Locally-varied food production systems are under threat, including related indigenous, traditional and local knowledge. With this decline, agrobiodiversity is disappearing, and also essential knowledge of traditional medicine and local foods. The loss of diverse diets is directly linked to diseases or health risk factors, such as diabetes, obesity and malnutrition, and has a direct impact on the availability of traditional medicines.
The Convention on Biological Diversity is the international legal instrument for “the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources” that has been ratified by 196 nations.
Given the importance of public education and awareness for the implementation of the Convention, the General Assembly proclaimed 22 May, the date of the adoption of its text, as the International Day for Biological Diversity by its resolution 55/201 of 20 December 2000.
Biodiversity and the Sustainable Development Goals
The objectives of halting biodiversity loss and promoting the sustainable use of terrestrial and inland freshwater ecosystems are included in Sustainable Development Goal 15.
What can we do?
We can participate in biodiversity conservation by increasing our knowledge of environmental issues, increasing our awareness of the impacts of biodiversity loss, and increasing support for government policies and actions that conserve our valuable ecosystems. We can become educators and role models as stewards of the environment by aiding in the recovery of species at risk and preventing other species from becoming at risk.
SOCIAL MEDIA: Join the online conversation on Twitter using the hashtags #IDBD2019 #biodiversity and following
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