Biodiversity at UvA
“Biodiversity underpins the health of the planet and has a direct impact on all our lives.”
Imagine a web that connects all living species in this world. This web represents the biological diversity, aka biodiversity, a product of four billion years of evolution. All ecosystems on earth, plants and animals, are interdependent connected with one another. Together they create an intricate balance that provides us with essentials like food, drinking water, clean air, medicines and shelter. The stronger the connection of the web’s threads, the better nature can provide for us and cope with threats such as climate change. Genetic diversity better equips organisms to deal with disaster and disease.
The ecosystem’s ability to sustain over and diverse form of life decreases. Humans actions endanger their own biodiversity. Since we’re also part of this biodiversity our actions have consequences. Chopping forests, turning Amazon rainforests into cropland and overharvesting fish to its own decline, are actions that cause imbalance in our ecological system. WWF stated that between 1970 and 2012, the wildlife populations have declined by 58% on average. This decline weakens the biodiversity and disrupts the balance of the ecosystems, increasing the vulnerability of humans and all other species. We as human should start to realize we’re part of a bigger whole and other species depend on us, just like we depend on them.
So, it’s time for a change. Our world is rich enough to supply every species with the food and living space they need. We have the knowledge and capability to move towards a future where humans are not the central point of the nature’s web, but an equal part of it. We know how we can start to repair the net, stop the damaging and reverse the current loss of nature. Now it’s time to act. And how can we, as students and university contribute to this restoration?
First things first are to raise awareness about this topic and spread the word. ISuggested by the WWF, various Green Offices from Dutch universities organize activities in light of the topic of biodiveristy in May. Through events such as filmscreenings and an excursion, the Green Office encourages students to get eduacted about this topic and see the fun of it.
Our goal is to increase the biodiversity at our campus. Add more diverse plants on the campus, inside and outside and create places for animals and insects to reside. Let us know if you have any ideas and suggestions regarding biodiversity, we would love to hear from you. Are you interested in one of the events? Stay posted on our social media for more details about the event and bring your friends!
Photo credits in respective order: Jordan Whitt, Lance Anderson, Chris Greenhow, & Chris Charles