A Snapshot: The Interconnection Between Pollination, Biodiversity and Our Wellbeing
Scanning through my news feed recently, my attention was caught by a story about the interconnection between pollination, biodiversity and our wellbeing. It appears that a better understanding and the improvement of practices can assist in the efficient and effective management of our species and ecosystems, which may otherwise continue to decline without any action to turnaround the factors creating this problem.
While commercial beekeeping is regarded as a relatively small industry, its role within the agricultural sector cannot be underestimated. Bees help pollinate most of the crops that we eat and many that feed farm livestock. In fact, there are claims that in Australia alone, two-thirds of food production depends on bee pollination.
However, while environmental contamination from pesticides are likely a large part of the reason that bees are dying, scientists are not entirely clear on the major factor behind the decline of bees. What is known is that the combination of deforestation and climate change are causing the loss of habitats. Honeybees are also susceptible to parasites, like the Varroa mite.
Although we have briefly discussed the significance of bees, there are other insect pollinators, which are also threatened. Critically, all species are interdependent on each other for sustainability of the ecosystem where there is a need for global financial and economic systems to build a global sustainable economy that steers away from the current limited paradigm of economic growth.
But what can be done for such a complicated and multifaceted issue? Particularly as our wellbeing and survival depends on the health of our planet and its species, it’s important that we do understand and take steps to protect biological diversity. Monitoring the soil, water and air we breathe provides more information on the source and dispersion of pollutants. From this information, we can enhance our knowledge and provide education on how to better manage the treatment and management of our environment. Other steps we can take may include conserving and recycling as a means to reduce landfill waste.
The Big Picture: The Significance of the International Day for Biological Diversity: 22 May
Today, Wednesday 22 May 2019 marks the International Day for Biological Diversity, which is a United Nations–sanctioned international day to increase knowledge and educate the public about biodiversity issues.
The theme for 2019 is “Our Biodiversity, Our Food, Our Health”—which focuses on biodiversity as foundation for food and health, and a key catalyst to transforming food systems and improving human health.
By joining the conversation and taking action to re-evaluate our consumption habits, we are all playing a part to reduce the biodiversity crisis affecting our planet.
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