Biodiversity loss is a development issue: a rapid review of the evidence

From genes to micro-organisms to top predators and even whole ecosystems, depend on biodiversity for everything from clean air and water to medicines and secure food supplies. Yet human activities are destroying biodiversity around 1,000 times faster than natural ‘background’ rates. This global biodiversity crisis is hitting the poorest communities first and hardest, because they can ill-afford to ‘buy in’ biodiversity’s previously-free goods and services (and are already bearing the brunt of climate change). So why does the development community often ignore biodiversity loss? This paper unpicks misunderstandings and sets out the evidence that biodiversity loss is much more than an environmental problem – it is an urgent development challenge.

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