What is Biodiversity?

Biodiversity is defined as ...

"the variability among living organisms from all sources… and
the ecological complexes of which they are part; this includes
diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems”

(Convention on Biological Diversity, Article 2).

(= Biological Diversity)

... is the richness and beauty of all life on earth
– from ants to whales, genes to ecosystems. Its quality, diversity and functioning is the world’s natural capital and builds the basis of our economic and social well-being and that of all future generations.

... is the diversity of all life on earth
It varies over time and place. For example, fewer birds live in Scandinavia in winter than in summer and a different number of organisms can be found in the tundra and the savannah. Biodiversity is not limited to national parks: it is everywhere.

... is integral to sustainable development
by providing vital goods and services, such as food, timber, carbon sequestration and flood regulation.

Key messages

2010 - International Year of Biological Diversity

The United Nations has proclaimed 2010 to be the International Year of Biodiversity. In all parts of the world, individual people, non-governmental organizations and businesses are working to protect and safeguard our precious and non-replaceable wealth of nature and reduce the loss of biodiversity. It is estimated that every day we lose 130 species that will never come back. Some of them are not even known to us yet.

Biodiversity is vital for the current and future well-being of our societies and builds the foundations of economic development. From this understanding the European Business & Biodiversity Campaign aims to increase the understanding of businesses vital role in sustaining life on Earth.

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