The Press: Ignore diversity at Earth’s peril

Ian Spellerberg and Jeff McNeely write, in an opinion piece in The Press, write about biodiversity: an issue of at least equal importance to climate change, but one which receives far less media attention.

They write about the current state of the earth’s biodiversity, it’s importance, and what can more can be done in trying to maintain it.

An excerpt: (read in full here)

“The media referred briefly to the comment “We are destroying life on Earth”. This alarming claim was made by Achim Steiner, UN Under-Secretary General and executive director of the UN Environment Programme.

“He went on to say: “The plants and animals, fungi and micro- organisms that produce and clean our air, generate drinking water, hydro-power and irrigation; provide food, shelter and medicines and also bring to many joy and a spiritual dimension to our daily lives need a helping hand – if not for their sakes, but for ours.”

“That conference came in the Year of Biological Diversity. The aim is to help increase understanding and awareness of nature and biodiversity issues.

“Climate change may be a concern but things are not looking good for nature and biological diversity.

“For example, an article published in April in Science, a prestigious international journal, reported that the 188 governments who agreed to achieve “a significant reduction in the rate of biodiversity loss by 2010″ are going to fall woefully short of their target.”