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Biodiversity conservation UPSC NOTE

 

  • World Environment Day : June 5

Significance of biodiversity

  • Biodiversity refers to the variability among terrestrial, marine and aquatic organisms, the diversity within and between them, and ecosystems

  • Despite referring to things concrete, like species and ecosystems, biodiversity is abstract

  • Experts lay the facts: Climate change poses biodiversity and livelihood risks; restoring biodiversity, in turn, can mitigate climate change

  • The 1992 Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD) emphasised biodiversity benefits and utilisation: as humanity’s medicinal raw stock at stake, or subsistence income for local livelihoods. 

  • The sum of a community or society’s satisfaction has remained biodiversity advocacy’s credo. 

On climate change

  • Localising a global problem like biodiversity loss helps gauge and convey worries and workarounds

  • Climate change perception research signals such possibilities.

Ecosystem conservation

  • Ecologists and biodiversity scientists celebrate nature’s variability, listing its beneficial services for society. 

  • Some of the functions it enables include flood regulation, carbon sequestration, pollination, and medicinal and nutritional plant provisioning.

Human well being

  •  A community, and its individuals, differ in their capabilities to convert income or ecosystem service into valuable functioning

  • In a country characterised by class, caste and gender inequities, converting forest rights and income, or a forest’s ecosystem service into valuable functioning is not an invariable given

Challenges

  • Mainstreaming biodiversity in policies and practices of government bureaucracies and businesses remains a task since these institutions continue to be mostly occupied with meeting revenue, expenditure or profit targets

  • While conservation and sustainability are serious state responsibilities and mandated corporate social responsibility (CSR) sees environmental investments, the concept of biodiversity remains confined to academia, NGOs, policy actors, both national and international (the UN) and philanthropies. 

  • Even in this confined space, where they evoke biodiversity in all its variability and functionality, the grasp of well-being is inadequate

  • There is an unevenness; they describe biodiversity well, but notions of well-being are often conjecture. 

  • In 2018, a National Mission on Biodiversity and Human Well-Being (NMBHWB) was approved in India, linking biodiversity to people’s economic prosperity and health

  • Two years later, in 2020, tasked with developing the Preparatory Phase Project for the NMBHWB, penned a piece in the PNAS journal, the prestigious peer-reviewed journal of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). 

  • The problem for the authors is under-investment in biodiversity science

  • But the problem, from a sociological and anthropological perspective, is how biodiversity is relevant to well-being. And how to understand well-being

Way forward

  • Restoration is the active or passive regeneration of biodiversity in a degraded ecosystem

  • Restoration is also an expert and confined field, ridden with technicalities and metrics

  • Community participation itself in restoration activity can be a well-being indicator

  • The care work that women invest in restoring a forest, and the aesthetics of a green flourish, are also well-being metrics

  • Biodiversity’s links to well-being will unravel if we are awake to human variability and functioning

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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Biodiversity conservation UPSC NOTE
Biodiversity conservation UPSC NOTE
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