Why is biodiversity so important and what has it to do with Climate Change? Biodiversity describes the vast range of interacting living things. For millennia the interaction of these systems resulted in a fine balance between the natural emission of carbon into the atmosphere and the absorption of carbon back into the land and oceans. A wide diversity of species meant failure in one system could be compensated in another and the whole eco system rebalanced. Trees and plants absorb large amounts of carbon as well as providing habitats for a wide range of species.
These habitats are being destroyed by human intervention at a catastrophic rate and the UK is one of the most nature depleted countries in the world. Since the 1930s, 97% of our species-rich wild meadows have been eradicated, 41% of all our species have been rapidly in decline since the 1970s and 15% are nearing extinction.
Reduce biodiversity and we reduce nature's ability to absorb carbon. The carbon accumulating in the atmosphere is accelerating Climate Change - which in turn contributes to the depletion of the species.
Cornwall has been chosen by Government as only one of five areas in the country to become a Nature Recovery Pilot. Sitting alongside Cornwall Council Climate Change Plan it will identify how best the county can protect, restore, and improve local wildlife.
What can you do
- Increase diversity in your own garden
- Mow high and not until June
- Leave wildlife corners
- Install a pond
- Encourage birds and hedgehogs
Sources of Information
Plant Life: The Wild Plant Conservation Charity (https://www.plantlife.org.uk/uk)
Wildlife Trusts (https://www.wildlifetrusts.org)
The Woodland Trust (https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk)
The Dasgupta Review of the Economics of Biodiversity (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/final-report-the-economics-of-biodiversity-the-dasgupta-review)
1st August 2021