Celebrating International Day for Biodiversity: The Convention on Biological Diversity

May 22: International Day for Biodiversity: The Convention on Biological Diversity
Reading Time: 3 minutes

May 22: International Day for Biodiversity: The Convention on Biological Diversity. Image: Unsplash

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Celebrating International Day for Biodiversity: The Convention on Biological Diversity

May 22 is International Day for Biodiversity, a day that raises awareness about the importance of biodiversity and its crucial role in maintaining a healthy planet. Biological diversity includes the variety of plants, animals, and microorganisms, genetic differences within each species, and ecosystems that host multiple interactions among their members.

Biological diversity is important globally because it protects us against climate change, ensures food security (i.e., through pollination), helps fight diseases, supports communities, and yields economic benefits.

However, today, we are experiencing several threats to biodiversity, including habitat loss, pollution, climate change, overexploitation of species, and a rise in invasive species. As these threats continue, more species are ending up vulnerable, threatened, or endangered and may cease to exist if action is not taken.

Governments and policymakers worldwide try to mitigate these threats through the Convention on Biological Diversity. This is the largest and most significant international agreement on the environment and has been around for over 30 years. To date, every nation in the world has signed the agreement (except the Vatican City and the USA, which have signed but never enforced the agreement).

The Convention on Biological Diversity arose from a growing recognition that the diversity of nature is a global asset that provides significant value to present and future generations. There isn’t a nation in the world that has not experienced threats to its local biodiversity.

The Convention on Biological Diversity has three main goals:

1- To conserve biological diversity

2- To use its components sustainably

3- To provide fair and equitable access to the benefits of using genetic resources

Every two years, the Convention on Biological Diversity holds a meeting to discuss their goals, progress and plans with the nations who have signed. It should be noted that the implementation of the policies from the Convention on Biological Diversity takes place at a national level as countries have control over their own resources. Although the treaty is legally binding, it cannot force members to protect their biodiversity in a certain way.

The last meeting (COP15) was held in Montreal, Canada in 2022. Many important things came out of this meeting, including identifying clear targets to address overexploitation, pollution, fragmentation, and unsustainable agricultural practices. Nations also agreed on developing a plan that safeguards the rights of indigenous peoples and recognizes their contributions as stewards of nature.

Moreover, at COP15, they set global targets for 2030, including effectively conserving and managing at least 30% of the world’s lands, inland waters, coastal areas, and oceans. The target also emphasizes areas of particular importance for biodiversity, ecosystem functioning, and services.

The next Convention on Biological Diversity meeting, COP16, is set to take place in Columbia from October 21 to November 1, 2024.

It is important that not only governments and policymakers work towards protecting biodiversity but that we take action on an individual level as well. You can celebrate International Day for Biological Diversity in many ways today and every day. Some of these ways include:

  • Starting your own organic garden, which includes native plants.
  • Visiting a farmers market and purchasing local produce.
  • Take a walk through a local or national park and try to identify the different plants, insects, and animals you discover.
  • Learning more about biodiversity by visiting your local library or a nature museum.
  • Visit a local conservation area.
  • Joining a local park clean-up team to remove invasive plants from your local environment.

Every action we take is one step towards mitigating the threats that affect biodiversity and allowing it to continue to thrive for generations to come.

Newsletter Signup

Sign up for exclusive content, original stories, activism awareness, events and more.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Support Us.

Happy Eco News will always remain free for anyone who needs it. Help us spread the good news about the environment!