How are people working to protect biodiversity?
There are several ways in which people are working toward protecting Earth’s biodiversity:
- Area Protection: Wildlife preserves are becoming more and more popular as a way of protecting biodiversity. By creating areas that cannot be disturbed by human development, the organisms within those boundaries are at a decreased risk for extinction. These areas are not necessarily always efficient because they create fragmented habitats, however. Movements to connect these preserves through wildlife corridors are also gaining momentum. Metapopulations, or interacting populations of the same species, are much more likely to survive than ones that are completely isolated.
- Sustainability: Efforts go above and beyond literally protecting what is left of the natural environment on this planet. Humans need to stop being dependent on resources that are nonrenewable, and find ways to coexist with nature. People are finding ways of harvesting energy without emitting pollutants, and are reducing overexploitation.
- Stabilization: People are spreading awareness of the potential for resource depletion if the human population continues to grow, and nonrenewable resources continue to be used. Movements to stabilize the amount of resources available and the amount needed for survival are spreading.
- Ex Situ: In an effort to reduce extinction rates, an approach called ex situ conservation is arising. Species are being preserved by being closely cared for and protected in artificial habitats. Otherwise extinct in the wild, these organisms are being conserved in zoos, aquariums, and other maintained areas.
- Restoration: Some people are not just protecting what is still wild, but putting in the extra effort to restore the ecosystems that have been affected by human involvement. Trees are being replanted and forest fires are being prevented in an effort to allow natural habitats to regenerate and thrive once more.