Biodiversity– The variety of plant and animal life in the world exists; simply it represents the total variability of life forms on the earth (Genetic, Species & Ecosystem)

-Biodiversity is major source of maintaining environmental issues as well as economic condition of a country because it provides direct and indirect benefits in health, food & industry. It can be said as non-consumptive use values like Tourism & Scientific research and Support services to humanity like modify climatic extremes, cleaning and degrading wastes, recycling nutrients, regulating hydro-logical cycles, controlling diseases, pest control, pollination etc.

Everyone in the world depends on nature and ecosystem services to provide the conditions for a decent, healthy & secure life; mountain & polar, inland water (Rivers & other wetlands), cultivated, coastal, forest & woodlands, dry-lands, urban (Parks & gardens, marine and islands are beneficial and possess variety of qualities like food, fiber, fresh water, local climate regulation, creation, sediment retention, nutrient cycling, disease regulation and spiritual values etc.

Pakistan has great reservation of natural resources including; natural forest, natural gas, coal mines, gold mines, water canals/rivers, mountains etc but when bad things happen with good ones, everything goes into wrong direction- same in sense with Pakistan, it is facing many problems in regards to biodiversity such as population pressure increasing very quickly enhancing depletion of natural resources, no reliable database/documentation available, very few organizations are involved in resource conservation, and a very few trained human resources are available in Pakistan to manage.

Therefore, such issues are faced by biodiversity;

Forests/Rangelands- Commercial logging, over-exploitation for fuel & fodder, livestock grazing prevents regeneration, over grazing and conversion to agricultural lands.

Wildlife- Hunting & poaching and habitat shrinkage.

Marine Areas- Over fishing by trawlers, conversion for urbanization & agriculture and oil & industrial pollution.

Wetlands- Land clearance for housing and agriculture, water pollution from pesticides and industrial pollution. (Source-WWF Pakistan)

These problems/threats/issues can only be met by filling up biodiversity conservation gaps with; protected area network, coordination & institutional capacity, financial & human resources, policy improvement and political commitment.

Moreover, these options can be considered as plus points- integrate human need with conservation-ICD, involvement of women in NRM at community level, enhancement of public education & awareness about natural resources, update status of database regularly for better management, and conduct research on various aspects of biodiversity. (Source-WWF Pakistan)

WWF-Pakistan’s ultimate goal is to stop, and eventually reverse the accelerating degradation of Pakistan?s natural environment and to help build a future in which humans live in harmony with nature.

(Make your ecological foot prints small & GREEN!)

-NILESH LUHANA

Biodiversity

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