Minister Joubert’s message on the International Biodiversity Day (May 22) |23 May 2022
‘We need to join hands to help reduce biodiversity loss’
“May 22 marks the annual celebration of the International Biodiversity Day. This year’s theme – ‘Building a shared future for all’ – reminds us that biodiversity remains the answer to the challenges of sustainable development.
“Biodiversity is considered the foundation of our well-being and we depend on it for our survival. It can also contribute to a thriving economy. Healthy ecosystems and ecosystem services enable growth in the tourism and fishing industry. They also support the agricultural production systems and we therefore need to manage them well to ensure that our oceans remain productive, resilient and adaptable to environmental changes.
“The world is losing biodiversity at an ever increasing and alarming rate. We need to work with nature to address the multiple challenges we face. Experts have estimated that one million plant and animal species are on the verge of extinction, with alarming implications for human survival. We need to find solutions to the natural and anthropogenic factors.
“The threats and impacts of such factors can be catastrophic. Coral bleaching can lead to the collapse of the commercial and traditional fisheries. Climate change can impact disease vectors such as mosquitoes which can subsequently affect human health. Development threaten species and their habitats and activities such as over harvesting, illegal fishing and poaching which threaten the survival of many species.
“Going forward, we must treasure the principle of sustainable utilisation of these declining resources and more than ever have the health of our environment and biodiversity conservation at the core of our national, regional and international agenda.
“We need to join hands to help reduce biodiversity loss. We need to research and find answers when taking decisions. We need to work together to achieve better results!
“Reversing biodiversity loss requires all of us to be responsible leaders in our homes, our places of work, our circle of friends, in schools and our communities.
Let us make a difference as we commemorate Biodiversity Day.”
Minister for Agriculture, Climate Change & Environment