International Day for Biological Diversity

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2024 Date22 May 2024
2025 Date22 May 2025

International Day for Biological Diversity

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International Day for Biological Diversity History

International Day for Biological Diversity is observed annually to raise awareness and increase understanding of the role that biodiversity plays in sustaining our ecosystems and economies. The day also aims to promote conservation efforts, value the contribution that biodiversity provides for human well-being and encourage every individual to take part in protecting and preserving the earth's diverse biosphere. This observance underscores the importance of preserving biological diversity to achieve sustainable development goals and ensuring a healthy planet for future generations.

The origin of International Day for Biological Diversity dates back to 1993 when the Convention on Biological Diversity came into effect after the efforts of the UN. India, being one of the 17 mega-diverse countries in the world, is particularly significant in the context of biological diversity. The country is home to 8% of the world's species, making it imperative for India to play an active role in conservation endeavors. It is vital for Indian citizens to recognize that the preservation of the nation's biodiversity is directly linked to its water security, climate change mitigation, and overall ecological balance.

In India, various activities and events are organized across the country to celebrate the International Day for Biological Diversity. This day serves as an opportunity for Indian citizens to reconnect with nature and increase their understanding of the country's rich biological heritage. International Day for Biological Diversity is observed on the 22nd of May every year, and it offers an opportunity for Indians to come together and contribute to conserving India's biodiversity.

Facts about Biological Diversity

  • Scientists estimate that there are anywhere between 8.7 million to 30 million species on Earth. However, only about 1.5 million species have been identified and classified thus far.
  • Despite covering less than 1% of the ocean floor, coral reefs are estimated to be home to 25% of all marine species.
  • Habitat degradation and the loss of biodiversity is a threat to the livelihood of over 1 billion people who live in dry and subhumid climates.
  • India harbors around 8% of the world's known species of plants and animals. India is home to around 49,000 plant species and over 97,000 animal species, including around 1,200 bird species and over 300 mammal species.
  • There are currently 105 national parks, 566 wildlife sanctuaries, and 18 biosphere reserves in India, covering around 5% of the country's geographical area.

Top things to do in India for this observance

  • Spread awareness on social media by using the hashtags #InternationalDayForBiologicalDiversity, #IDBD and #BiologicalDiversity.
  • Join the international Day for Biological Diversity Google Hangout where you can video stream yourself and with other people to discuss biological diversity with like-minded individuals.
  • What are some good movies or Documentaries to watch about Biological Diversity in India?
    1. Wild Karnataka (2019): Narrated by Sir David Attenborough, this film showcases the diverse and vibrant wildlife of Karnataka, a southern state in India. The documentary highlights the efforts of conservationists in preserving the country's incredible biodiversity.
    2. Wild India (2016): A nature documentary series covering India's most iconic animals and breathtaking landscapes. The series showcases the remarkable diversity of Indian wildlife, from popular species like Bengal tigers and Asian elephants to lesser-known species found in various ecosystems.
    3. India's Mysterious Islands (2015): A documentary by National Geographic that explores the stunning natural beauty of India's remote islands, showcasing the unique biodiversity of regions like Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Lakshadweep.
  • What are some good pertient books to read to learn more about Biological Diversity in India?
    1. India's Forests: Beyond the Periphery by Madhav Gadgil: This book focuses on the importance of India's forests in maintaining the country's biodiversity, discussing the threats they face and the measures needed to protect them.
    2. Plant Biodiversity of the Eastern Ghats of India: Conservation and Sustainable Management edited by T. Pullaiah and M. Anees Ahamed: This book focuses on the plant biodiversity of the Eastern Ghats, discussing its conservation and sustainable management.
    3. Faunal Diversity and Wildlife of India by Asok Kumar Mallik: This book offers an overview of India's faunal diversity and the challenges it faces, with a focus on conservation efforts.

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