The depletion of biodiversity will have profound consequences for the functioning of ecosystem services. We are working hard to improve our content. Quick Navigation for The Importance of Biodiversity, [1] Wilson, Edward O., The Future of Life, A.A. Knopf, NY, NY 2002, p.3. And the more closer a species is related to another, the more genetic information the two species will share. Biodiversity is what allows ecosystems to work and flourish. While heavy machinery keeps spraying #monocrops with #pesticides and #fertilizers, millions of #family #farmers are applying agroecological approaches to redress those impacts and revive #rural areas. Even if certain species are affected by pollution, climate change or human activities, the ecosystem as a whole may adapt and survive. Most cultures, at least at some time, have recognized the importance of conserving natural resources. 3. Because people evolve with their environments, their history and identity is embedded there. Utilitarian values include the many basic needs humans obtain from biodiversity such as food, fuel, shelter, and medicine. Changes in the composition of ecosystems have also been observed (e.g. Having a rich variety of ecosystems, what biologists call ecosystem diversity, constitutes another important level of biodiversity. Biodiversity and the ecosystem sustainability, Areas with the highest levels of biodiversity, 10 Endangered Plants with Medicinal Properties, nature contributes to the emotional well-being, The Importance of Indigenous Knowledge for the Modern World, medicines production of food, fiber for textiles and shelter, fuel and energy, the suppression of pests and human diseases. In essence, any reduction of the diversity of life, whether by human hands or by natural causes, weakens the links that exist among species and habitats. Provide for nutrient storage and recycling. Loss of biodiversity threatens these ecosystem services and risks making food production more expensive or impossible. increased lianas in tropical forest). Or a dominant species could be an invasive plant that will overtake the native plants in the competition for soil. Healthy and well-functioning freshwater, terrestrial and marine ecosystems are important for a productive and healthy environment. Introduction 1.1 Background Biodiversity is the term used to encompass the variety of all living organisms on Earth, including their genetic diversity, species diversity and the diversity of ecosystems. Should a drought, pest or disease threaten one of these crops, the entire world’s food supply will diminish appreciably. Since each species has a role to play, a diverse ecosystem allows them to interact and reach symbiosis. All forms of life from microbes to plants to humans contain genes. We are a couple of environmentalists who seek inspiration for life in simple values based on our love for nature. Biodiversity is important for maintaining an important balance of the ecosystem. 1. This can be done by recycling & storage of nutrients, controlling pollution, & stabilizing climate. Biodiversity has direct economic benefits. Ø Biodiversity is very essential for: Ecological balance, Constancy of climatic features and Soil maintenance. Members of a species share genes. Species diversity then is the number of different species co-existing within a community, for example bear, humans, birds and dogs. If a population is minimized and must cross-pollinate or inbreed with the survivors, successive generations will have fewer different genes and it is most often the case that susceptibilities are magnified and reduced infertility occurs, so that smaller populations carry illnesses or crippling enough defects that they soon die out. California has prairies, deserts, lakes, forests and beach. Biodiversity is a reservoir of resources for the manufacture of food, cosmetic products and pharmaceuticals. That is the reason for parks in urban areas. Our biodiversity is very important to the well-being of our planet. Provide more medicinal resources and pharmaceutical drugs. Maintaining biodiversity of natural ecosystems is one of the most important problems and tasks for people in the 21st century. The list of services ecosystems perform for us is extensive and includes: While the medicinal value of plants is mentioned above as one of the services provided by an ecosystem, this service deserves specific attention. Biodiversity boosts ecosystem productivity where each species, no matter how small, all have an important role to play. One overriding importance is that biodiversity is responsible for the continuity of the planet because it supports majority of the vital environmental life cycles such as the oxygen cycle, the water cycle , and the nitrogen cycle just to mention a few. This is because species in an ecosystem depend upon each other for food, keeping birth and death rates in a balance that is sustainable for the ecosystem. Living organisms on the earth are complex, dynamic, and varies according to the earthly or the marine ecosystems. If a fire tears through a forest where only one species exists and is wiped out by the fire, the forest ecosystem is less likely to deal with this loss than if only one out of 20 species disappeared. Ecological diversity within an ecosystem is more diverse when it contains varied topography, allowing more places for shelter and for escape, a lot of sunlight and rainfall, allowing for more rapid growth of plants as a food source and stable temperatures, making adaptation easier for species. To learn more about biodiversity, visit the Australian Museum website or read about it on Wikipedia. Biodiversity is important because it boosts ecosystem productivity where each species all have an important role to play. If a lake has many different types of fish and other marine life like turtles and frogs and many different types of plants and insects, then there is a great biodiversity of genes and species all contributing to the sustainability of the ecosystem of the lake. But the findings showed that in fact there was a greater number of diverse species in tropical forests over a greater distance in Panama [18]. If there are a great number and variety of species, the disappearance of one species for whatever reason will not have as much effect on the ecosystem as a whole than it would if the extinct species had played a critical role, that is offered a function upon which other species relied exclusively [3]. "Biodiversity influences ecosystem services, that is, the benefits provided by ecosystems to humans, that contribute to making human life … Biodiversity loss also means that we are losing, before discovery, many of nature's chemicals and genes, of the kind that have already provided humankind with enormous health benefits. Ecosystem function is important for supporting plant and animal communities, and ensuring the long-term survival of human populations. Ecosystems affect the biosphere, or life on earth. Loss of biodiversity may have reverberating consequences on ecosystems because of the complex interrelations among species. To be considered sustainable an ecosystem must be able to maintain these processes over time and in the face of external stresses that may occur like fires or pollution. Although some ecosystems may be insensitive to species loss, due to variations in ecosystem types, or the presence of multiple species that perform a similar role, or due to their relative unimportance, or because of other abiotic factors, it is clear that higher numbers of species are needed to ensure stable provision of ecosystem services. Over millions of years many different species of plants and animals have come to live in the same habitats. Ecosystem diversity looks at the number and variability of ecosystems in an area. One of the most important reasons we should continue to work on preserving … For example, A larger number of plant species means a greater variety of crops; Greater … All species, including human beings, are intricately linked by their interactions with each other and the environment… The problem is that we don’t know what we are losing, especially when it comes to life in the rainforest, where so many species have adapted amazing defenses to predators, pests, infections and diseases over thousands of years, defenses that we humans might use in our fight against cancer and other serious diseases [10]. Read more about us. Sustainability is the ability of the ecosystem to maintain its ecological processes, the composting of debris into soil, the exchange of carbon and air, the production of rainfall, photosynthesis, the life-giving processes required to maintain life as we know it on earth. With less biodiversity, these connections weaken and sometimes break, harming all the species in the ecosystem… Biodiversity is important to people in many ways. An analysis on the importance of biodiversity in an ecosystem as shown by the gray wolf extirpation and reintroduction in Yellowstone Park The extirpation of the grey wolf (Canis lupus) in Yellowstone Pak is a prime example of the impact of biodiversity loss, specifically a keystone species, on a terrestrial ecosystem. Access to a sufficiency of a nutritious variety of food is a fundamental determinant of health. Healthy marine ecosystems are important for society since they provide services including food security, feed for livestock , raw materials for medicines, building materials from coral rock and sand, and natural defenses against hazards such as coastal erosion and inundation. Biodiversity underpins a range of ecosystem services. This is because the more equal species are in proportion to each other, the more stable it is because there are not dominant species. Download the Biodiversity notes PDF for IAS Exam. There are multiple examples within any region of each category of insect, bacteria, herbivore, omnivore or carnivorous predator. Dominant species may reflect an imbalance in the food chain which will likely lead to the extinction of the prey. This could lead to the displacement of animals relying on the native plants for food or shelter. Many of our most potent medicines are derived from plants [6]. Before getting into Tourism and Biodiversity, it is crucial to know what is tourism and Bio-diversity. E.O. Biodiversity is important for maintaining an important balance of the ecosystem. life on Earth. Having a rich variety of ecosystems, what biologists call ecosystem diversity, constitutes another important level of biodiversity. Concerned about the rapidly increasing loss of genetic diversity the UN Food and Agricultural Organization supports a trust of diverse seed collections around the world to maintain food security. The more links that exist in the web the more stable the ecosystem as the removal of one link will not have a dramatic effect if there are other links that can fill the void. The Pacific Northwest represents a unique ecosystem. Human life relies on our ecosystems providing the life-sustaining services of providing oxygen, detoxifying our soil and water, providing materials for clothing and shelter and providing our food and the nutrients we require. Likewise, it is well-documented that nature contributes to the emotional well-being of humans [11]. Biodiversity is important in human-managed as well as natural ecosystems. Read about Biodiversity Conservation, the importance of Biodiversity, Loss of Biodiversity, and more. Based on tropical rainforests, we see why biodiversity is so crucial in maintaining an ecosystem. Biodiversity is defined as "the variety of life and it's processes," which can be thought of as the diverse and richness of life that exists on earth. An aesthetic appreciation of biodiversity itself has also been documented. Importance of Biodiversity There are numerous reasons deeming biodiversity significant. Ecosystems are all of the animals, plants, and micro-organisms as well as physical aspects of the area. Biodiversity And Ecosystem Stability Biodiversity is important for the health of an ecosystem. A nice example of species diversity can be found when looking at a lake. Its aquatic life may contribute to the quality of the soil by aerating it and enriching it with its waste and carcasses. Wild food sources are mainly aquatic, but few are being managed for sustainability. The Importance of Biodiversity Biodiversity is the amount of variety of life on Earth. Biodiversity is the variety of all living things: the different plants, animals and microorganisms, the different genetic information they contain, and the varied ecosystems they form. When there is a large population from which to reproduce, there can be more combinations of genes in the offspring. Support a larger number of plant species and, therefore, a greater variety of crops. Why Is Biodiversity Important? Medical Discoveries. Biodiversity is a community of all the living organisms on the earth and the diversity among them from all the ecosystems. Stories abound of the discovery of life-saving plant-derived drugs just before the last of the species was eliminated by deforestation. Nature also provides many opportunities for recreation from ziplining to canoeing. Image credit: VectorMine . A healthy ecosystem stems from rich biodiversity. Seventy percent of the plants identified as having anti-cancer characteristics by the US National Cancer Institute are found only in the tropical rainforest [9]. With more variations in the genes it is more likely that a member of the species has genes that are well-suited or resistant to the changes being faced, whether it is a poorer air quality or a spreading disease. Antibiotics, fungicides, anticancer drugs, blood-clotting agents and thinners, anesthetics, cardiac regulators and fever suppressants are among the drugs we have obtained from wild biodiversity [8]. Why Is It Important to Conserve Biodiversity? Biodiversity is important for many reasons and they can be generally divided into two categories: the importance for ecosystems and for us. A food web is a more complex arrangement where some of the species have a couple different food options. Energy is continually input into an ecosystem in the form of light energy, and some energy is lost with each transfer to a higher … When we talk about ecosystem and biodiversity we need to focus both bio and non-bio (physical) factors. At the World Summit on Sustainable Development, held in Johannesburg 2002, biological diversity was addressed in Chapter IV, paragraph 44, of the outcome of the Summit, the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation. The term biodiversity (from the phrase “biological diversity”) refers to the variety of life on Earth at all its levels, from genes to ecosystems, and can encompass the evolutionary, ecological, and cultural processes that sustain life.

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