category : Biodiversity and nature preservation
Biodiversity means that our planet Earth is home to many and varied animals and plants – about 8.7 million species. Biodiversity is important for the survival of life on the planet – the more species there are, the more ecosystems there are.
Biodiversity and the existence of diverse species of plants and animals maintain the ecological balance of the planet. Without it, some resources may disappear, which means hunger and shortage of important human products.
Human activity can be expressed in the following activities that cause serious damage to nature:
Logging and deforestation;
Introduction of alien species to the ecosystem;
Fishing and oil production from the oceans;
Urbanization (overpopulation of cities).
Logging and deforestation
Deforestation is when people cut down or burn large areas of forest to make room for agricultural land, plantations or use trees as fuel. There are two main different methods of deforestation, which include burning trees and cutting them all at once. It happens in many parts of the world and has an extremely negative impact on the environment, as trees produce the oxygen we need.
Where deforestation occurs
Deforestation takes place mainly in tropical rainforests and over 34% of the world’s old rainforests have already been completely destroyed. 95% of all deforestation occurs in the tropics. Brazil and Indonesia alone are responsible for almost half of all deforestation. The 3 main tropical forests affected by deforestation: the Brazilian Amazon rainforest, the Brazilian Cerado rainforest, the Gran Chaco Rainforest.
Solution to the problem: people to make sure to plant more and more trees. One of the leading countries is Canada, which has a whole afforestation program.
When clearing agricultural land, man takes up large areas of natural ecosystems. This leads to imbalance in them and reduce the space in which wild animals live.
Many farmers use chemicals and pesticides (chemicals used to kill insects) to help their crops grow. However, these chemicals can harm people and the environment.
Solution to the problem: Organic farming rejects the use of chemicals. That is why organic products are becoming increasingly popular. To encourage this, it is desirable to buy organic products.
Introduction of alien species to the ecosystem
After many years of owning a few domestic goldfish, you decide to set them free in a nearby lake. Next year you look at the lake and see goldfish everywhere! What is happening?
Let’s say that a new animal, “animal A”, intervenes and begins to live in the ecosystem – there are rabbits, foxes, squirrels. Animal A also eats grass and leafy vegetables. Rabbits are now competing with animal A. If animal A begins to eat rabbits’ stocks of grass and leafy vegetables, it means that some rabbits will starve, move or shrink sharply. Animal A lives very comfortably and before you know it, it has taken over the whole area! As a result, the rabbits have disappeared. Foxes hunt rabbits and squirrels for food, so now foxes only have to eat squirrels. As a result, the squirrel population is also declining! This is a chain reaction. It damages the biodiversity of the environment; this means that there is no longer such a great variety of living beings.
The solution to this problem is not to populate and introduce artificial species that are not characteristic of the ecosystem.
Fishing and oil production in the ocean
Fishing is vital for humans. In the past, people used fishing rods and small nets, catching only the amount they needed. Modern fishing uses production nets that cover a large area. Some fishing gear even catches fish using underwater bombs, which destroy many of the other aquatic inhabitants as well as underwater plants.
Oil production is a necessity for our daily lives, as there is almost no human being on the planet who is not dependent on cars and car transport. However, this is a double-edged sword. Oil tankers can spill oil during transport and collision with another ship. Such a spill has extremely severe consequences for life in the ocean within a radius of hundreds of kilometres around. Many species covered by oil slicks are dying, and finding food from others is becoming very difficult.
The solution to the problem is the rapid cleaning of these stains and the provision of oil tankers with technologies.
Urbanization (urban overpopulation)
This is happening when more and more people are moving to cities, either because they are looking for work there and want to change their living conditions. For that reason the population of the city grows significantly and gradually the cities grow, occupy a larger area, the buildings become more numerous, taller, larger. This takes away the forests and fields – the homes where plants and animals live and threatens their existence. More and more people in cities are starting to use more cars to get around. This requires the construction of new roads so that they can travel comfortably to work, school, etc. The construction of highways and roads, in turn, leads to the removal of even more land from animal and plant homes.
That is why urban overcrowding threatens the lives of many plant and animal species.
A solution to this problem would be for people to return to life in small towns and villages.