Penny Becker, Regional Executive Director, Island Conservation

World Nature Conservation Day is celebrated every year on July 28. The date is a reminder of the value of conservation for people and wildlife alike. Nowhere is this connection more apparent than on islands, which are home to a wide array of animals and plants found nowhere else on Earth, and 10% of the global human population. Many island communities understand the essential role of nature and have seen first-hand the destruction of species, ecosystems, human livelihoods, and community wellbeing, and are taking steps to preserve biodiversity for today and into the future.

Islands are not always the pristine oasis we imagine; they often experience severe environmental destruction caused by introduced, invasive species—the primary cause of island extinctions, and a driver of our global extinction crisis. For decades, Island Conservation has focused on this intersection, removing invasive species from islands with remarkable results, bringing endangered wildlife back from the brink of extinction, reviving vegetation and habitat, and reclaiming vital resources for island communities.