Prelims level : Environment Mains level : Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management
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Why in News:

  • Biodiversity assessments must be factored into all economic activity


  • The overwhelming message from the global assessment report of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) is that human beings have so rapaciously exploited nature, and that species belonging to a quarter of all studied animal and plant groups on earth are gravely threatened
  • If the world continues to pursue the current model of economic growth without factoring in environmental costs, one million species could go extinct, many in a matter of decades Catastrophic erosion of ecosystems is being driven by unsustainable use of land and water, direct harvesting of species, climate change, pollution and release of alien plants and animals in new habitats. there is particular worry over the devastation occurring in tropical areas, which are endowed with greater biodiversity than others; only a quarter of the land worldwide now retains its ecological and evolutionary integrity, largely spared of human impact.
  • Nature provides ecosystem services, but these are often not included in productivity estimates: they are vital for food production, for clean air and water, provision of fuel for millions, absorption of carbon in the atmosphere, and climate moderation.
  • Expanding agriculture by cutting down forests has raised food volumes, and mining feeds many industries, but these have severely affected other functions such as water availability, pollination, maintenance of wild variants of domesticated plants and climate regulation.
  • IPBES assessment points out, marine plastic pollution has increased tenfold since 1980, affecting at least 267 species, including 86% of marine turtles, 44% of seabirds and 43% of marine mammals

The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services

  • The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services or IPBES is an independent inter-governmental agency formed to reinforce the interface between science and policy for ecosystem and biodiversity services in order to conserve and sustainably use biodiversity, achieve long-term well-being for humans, and sustainable development.
  • 94 governments established the IPBES on 21st April 2012 in Panama City. Any member of the UN can join this body.
  • The organisation is dedicated to making IPBES as the pioneering inter-governmental body for evaluating earth’s biodiversity and ecosystems, and the basic services they provide to society
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