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International Biodiversity Day: Leveraging innovation as Part Of The Plan for nature

On May 22, we celebrate International Day for Biological Diversity, an opportunity to raise awareness and understanding of biodiversity issues worldwide.

This year’s theme “Be Part of the Planis a call to action for stakeholders to halt and reverse biodiversity loss by supporting the implementation of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework (GBF), adopted during the Fifteenth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (COP 15). Also referred to as The Biodiversity Plan, the framework sets out an ambitious pathway for achieving the vision of a world living in harmony with nature by 2050.

Today, our planet’s biodiversity is in a state of crisis, with around one million species  threatened with extinction, many within decades, unless transformative action is taken. Biodiversity loss has accelerated dramatically over the last two decades. Worsened by climate change, this trend poses a significant threat to the health of our planet. According to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), invasive species are one of five main drivers of this loss of life alongside changes in land and sea use, exploitation of natural resources, global heating, and pollution.

While there have been many successful conservation initiatives, issues of cost, replicability, and scalability limit the overall success of current interventions. The accelerating rate of ecosystem degradation underscores the need to explore innovative approaches alongside existing tools to achieve the ambitious targets of the Biodiversity Plan. A recently released study in Science Magazine found that conservation efforts – particularly those focused on removing invasive alien species – have a positive impact on biodiversity, but that scaling up conservation interventions is necessary to reverse the global biodiversity crisis.

For International Day for Biological Diversity, we are showcasing 7 researchers and conservation experts and their perspective on how research and innovation can be “part of the plan” to build back biodiversity.

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