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World Biodiversity Day, the may 22 every year, we review and the commitment of the entire planet to this cause that embraces every aspect of our life and the environment that hosts us is never enough. Biodiversity is synonymous with "biological diversity". We have translated the English term by assonance, but no matter the name and its genesis, it is essential to understand what we are talking about and that it is a treasure that is threatened more and more every day.
By biodiversity of a particular environment we mean the variety of living organisms present in it, it can be described in terms of genes, species or ecosystems, but the fact remains that the progressive increase in polluting factors and the reduction of habitats are putting it in danger. There World Biodiversity Day it is an opportunity to embark on or continue on the path of sustainable development by promoting the understanding, protection and conservation of the countless interactive ecosystems of the planet. Let's see in practice what it means and what to do.
Today we can only imagine what the wealth that we have in front of our eyes and under our feet consists of, but we can use the World Biodiversity Day to stop for a minute to think about how extremely partial our knowledge of the animal and vegetable kingdom is. So far, more than one million and 700 thousand species have been described and there are more than twelve million of them, most of them found in the sea, the most unexplored area.
Only 5% of the oceans we know, the rest is a mystery to discover but without compromising it as we often do as small and pestiferous children who as soon as they discover a new toy monopolize it until they break it.
World Biodiversity Day reminds us that the destiny of humanity is linked to biodiversity, precisely this abundance of life forms provides us directly or not with sustenance and services.
World Biodiversity Day it is also a day of celebration because despite the concerns for extinct species, stopping to admire the range of existing creatures gives us moments of joy, amazement and emotion. A sense of wealth that is surprisingly unrelated to money and not listed on the stock exchange. Precisely for this reason, because it is not immediately and easily monetizable, it takes one World Biodiversity Day to remember and defend it.
World Biodiversity Day: when it occurs
There World biodiversity day is celebrated every year on may 22, it is a date on which the intention to dedicate energy and funds to the defense and protection of biodiversity is reaffirmed. All over the world, translating equal to the concept in English with the formula "International Day for Biological Diversity”.
Proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in 2000 the World Biodiversity Day was initially created to celebrate the adoption of the Convention on Biological Diversity. This document, often referred to by the cryptic acronym of CBD, was adopted in Nairobi, Kenya, on May 22, 1992.
Each year to better focus the reflections and the purposes of the World Biodiversity Day a sub-theme is chosen: the index of the great book of life describing our world is so vast that, in order not to waste energy and contributions, it is better to coordinate the good intentions around the world.
The now past year 2010 was declared by the UN l'International Year of Biodiversity, if we have not exploited it well to defend our Earth and its riches, we still have a portion of the decade 2011-2020, declared Decade of Biodiversity, to roll up our hands and do our part. We are also an element of biodiversity on the planet, the World Biodiversity Day it is also our party.
World Biodiversity Day: what biodiversity is
Entering into the merits of biodiversity, once the amazement and sense of danger for the threats to which it is subjected every day have been disposed of, let's see more specifically what it means.In a biological or ecological sense, biodiversity it is understood as the multiplicity of living organisms, in their different forms, and their respective ecosystems. Variety of genes, species, ecological niches and ecosystems. And it's not enough to take a snapshot and then try to catalog with infinite patience, because new species are discovered and must be added to the long list.
There World Biodiversity Day it is for each type of biodiversity that one wants to understand. In general, three levels of biodiversity are distinguished by the most experts, who also deal with it on the other days. The genetic one, understood as the entire genetic heritage of the living beings that inhabit the planet, that relating to the diversity of species, that is, to the abundance and taxonomic diversity of species present on the earth. Then there is the biodiversity of ecosystems that wants to focus attention on all the natural environments present on our planet.
Precisely in this regard, let us remember that the biodiversity it is not and will never be translated into a fixed and stable value, in a given environment, because even if we take only one cubic meter of the planet, it can increase or decrease over time. And that also depends on us.
World Biodiversity Day: why it matters
There World Biodiversity Day it is not a party in which we look around taking responsibility, limiting ourselves to thinking about how lucky we are to have such a beautiful world to inhabit. Let's rejoice, yes, but let's commit ourselves to keep this world well. Biodiversity is not a kind of spectacle of nature to be watched with 3D glasses but an important element on which the quality of our current existence and that of future generations depends.
It is not about philosophy and abstract correlations, there are real, concrete and daily examples to make us worry immediately and become the first promoters of World Biodiversity Day. From the point of view of human life, in fact, biodiversity plays an essential role in agricultural production. Just think of the various crops of fruit and vegetables with specific characteristics which we enjoy without reflecting. A very Italian example is the one concerning grapes and all the differences between the various vines that then bring the numerous types of wine to the table. Even thinking about how many there are only along our peninsula ...
Another example for gourmets, even abstainers, is that of the biodiversity that hides in the microorganisms of some caves: it silently determines the specific flavor of some cheeses, including gorgonzola. It's not just about eating and drinking there biodiversity allows us to choose between various types of wood the most suitable from time to time for furniture, musical instruments, boats and more. Or between various types of textile fibers, qualities of cotton or linen.
World Biodiversity Day it also involves the tourism sector, as a celebration of ecological and landscape diversity that allows us to choose the most varied destinations to relax, get to know new environments, live “biodiverse” experiences.
World Biodiversity Day: initiatives
Before you think about what you can do for the World Biodiversity Day it should be noted that the loss of species, subspecies or varieties involves a series of damages on various levels. From the ecological point of view we must fear the deterioration of the functionality of ecosystems, from the cultural one the loss of human knowledge and traditions linked to biodiversity.
Our country, so full of traditions closely connected with the land and nature, should be in the front row, not only on May 22 in the World Biodiversity Day, to defend their wealth with the sword. The third point of view with which to look with proactive fear at the idea of biodiversity loss is the economic one: if genetic resources are reduced, their potential economic exploitation also decreases.
With a local mind on what awaits us if valid initiatives are not put in place, we begin to think about what to do. In general, important actions must necessarily concern the fighting climate change which has a strong negative effect on biodiversity. Let's take a look at what each of us can make their own contribution with their good daily habits. There is no shortage of ideas for good intentions to be maintained until next 22 May.
From the "institutional" point of view, the need for individual governments and international organizations to establish rules of regulations aimed at protecting biodiversity, both animal and vegetable. In particular, of the agro-food biodiversity. With regard to Italy, we ratified the Convention on Biodiversity with Law 124/1994 and in 2010 the National Strategy for Biodiversity was adopted. In the year of Expo (2015), many initiatives, conferences and meetings celebrated the idea of biodiversity, it is to be seen how all this will be transformed into concrete actions.
So far we have not talked about an ad hoc initiative for the World Biodiversity Day. Many local organizations organize moments of celebration or study, we can consult the web to inform us, given that Italy is the country of 60 million bell towers or almost. There is nothing nationally coordinated, but if the green will is not lacking, we will take ours in hand World Biodiversity Day. Like? A trip to the nearby natural park. There are some suggestions here, in the article "Parks in Italy: list and maps". Or, a reading that can help us broaden our personal knowledge of biodiversity.
And, from World Biodiversity Dayonwards, let's try to pause a few thousandths of a second a day, to notice everything our “biodiverse” modest day, how many different forms of life we encounter and how much we respect them. At the end of the day, it will be natural to say “thank you” for a wealth other than that listed on the stock exchange.
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- World Environment Day