Loss of Biodiversity Discussed at the WWF Living Planet Conference

The World Wide Fund for Nature SA’s (WWF) Living Planet Conference 2021 will take place this month to address current challenges to South Africa’s biodiversity and its impact on human life.

The conference will look into these threats as well as the rapid fall in species numbers caused by habitat loss and degradation.

The WWF’s conference, now in its ninth year, will be held virtually from August 24 to August 26, with discussions on protecting biodiversity, the role of finance and the business community, climate and water security challenges, and the value of indigenous knowledge in biodiversity efforts.

According to the WWF, there has been a significant reduction in species, which needs to be addressed because it is not a good indicator of overall ecosystem health.

The main cause of this substantial reduction, according to their 2020 Living Planet Index, was habitat loss and degradation, such as deforestation, which was mostly driven by food production.

The panel debate on increasing action toward a nature-positive outcome, bringing together climate, biodiversity, and sustainable development into one common vision by leaders in SA’s conservation sector, will be a highlight of the conference which will include including South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) chief executive officer Shonisani Munzhedzi, UN Development Programme resident representative Dr Ayodele Odusola and WWF SA CEO Dr Morné du Plessis.

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