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On a simple level, biodiversity is the variety of all types of life through all ecosystems on the planet. However, since the 1980s, the term biodiversity has come to mean much more than this variety. The word now implies our need to reduce the rate at which species are becoming extinct and the worldwide importance of maintaining diversity on our planet.
Extinction has been a part of life and evolution since the first creatures appeared on the planet. However, in today’s world, species are dying out faster than ever before. Current estimations suggest that the world’s currently living species only make up 1% of all the vast species which have existed on the earth. Estimations for the future are even more dim with 75% of surviving species expect to be extinct within 100 years.
As biodiversity dies off on the planet, the population of humans is rapidly rising. Already, humankind is facing severe problems in regards to natural resources and space. This is only going to worsen if we don’t make efforts to cap our populations and preserve biodiversity.
While the eminent extinction of our species may seem like a far-off apocalypse, there are already current ramifications for our loss of biodiversity. Preserving biodiversity is crucial for maintaining our economy and ecology. From an ethical perspective, biodiversity takes us beyond just the threat of extinction and makes us look at our role in the world’s population.