Biodiversity, the variety of life of Earth, has been discussed thoroughly in posts of varying perspectives thoughout this blog. These posts and perspectives help us better understand biodiversity’s important role in our everyday life and its crucial role in everything around us. By understanding its importance, learning about how to protect it is of the utmost importance. There are many steps that one can take to insure the safety of our world’s variation of life, a few big steps follow:
1) Pushing for Biodiversity Parks - These parks' sole purpose is to honor the evolutionary heritage reflected in biological diversity. The parks would offer protection for endangered species and evolutionary distinctive ecosystems.
2) Reclaiming lost habitats - This means to restore current land used for farming, ranching, logging (a few examples) back into a flourishing ecosystem. Allowing nature to restore itself without our presence is the only way to produce this outcome.
3) Ecotourism - If protecting biodiversity for a healthier Earth isn’t your cup of tea, maybe protecting biodiversity for profits may be more compelling. Not only does biodiversity increase our Earth’s health, it can be a form of wealth that comes in the form of Ecotourism. An example of this can be seen in Rwanda where one of its biggest economic engines is Gorilla watching. Tourists pay up to $1,000 an hour just to be in contact with these rare species!
4) Enforcement of Laws - There are many laws set in place to protect the species on this planet. When these laws, commissions, and treaties are fully enforced it produces positive effects. Pressure on non-compliant nations is key and can be created with the strict enforcement of the laws; hopefully resulting in higher rates of species protection. The creation of new laws can also create this pressure on non-compliant nations. Ecuador has currently used this tactic by establishing constitutional rights for nature. “The law gives Ecuadorans the right, and obligation, to protect ecosystems, even if they are not directly injured themselves” (Roman).
5) Education - Bioliteracy may be one of the most important ways to make a difference. As a society, we only protect what we value. With more education on the topic of nature and biodiversity the knowledge gained can help reignite the love of our planets diversity.
Without biodiversity, everything on this planet will suffer and balance will be lost. In order to keep this balance, we must all do our part. Your part can be spreading the word about the importance of biodiversity to others, by doing some of the things listed above, or even by taking the time to research the topic on your own time. The world is fragile; let’s work together so it doesn’t shatter.
Joe Roman book, Extinction’s in the House: How Saving Endangered Species Can Save Us (Harvard University Press).