Biodiversity is the part of nature that is alive! It is every living creature on Earth, great or small, us humans too. Nature is all biodiversity and its interactions with the Earth’s non-living systems, like soil, water, climate, mountains. The countless interactions in nature underpin our planetary health by regulating the climate and the air we breathe, maintaining healthy soils, and providing pollination, food and clean water.
We are losing biodiversity at devastating rates – far higher than ever before in Earth’s history. As we lose biodiversity, we lose critical functions that regulate our planetary health. We also lose opportunities for inspiration, education, recreation, as well as part of our sense of place, cultural diversity and spiritual heritage. These are the very things that give us humans meaning beyond mere survival!
Humans are causing this loss and humans can fix it, it is not too late to ‘bend the curve’ of biodiversity decline.
- Jeanne Nel
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Bending the curve refers to a world where we halt and reverse the destruction of nature. The term signifies the bending of the current steep decline of biodiversity (grey line) to set it on an upward trajectory. Global and EU biodiversity policy aspires to bend the curve by 2030, with recovery by 2050.
Global biodiversity scenarios show that this is not possible by merely ramping up existing conservation efforts (orange line), but only if we also add sustainable production and consumption (green line). ‘Bending the curve’ goes beyond simply ‘minimizing harm’ to nature, to enriching biodiversity and enhancing the capacity of ecosystems to regulate climate and provide other important services.