Summary

The Rio Earth Summit in 1992 defined biodiversity as:

“the variability among living organisms from all sources, including terrestrial, marine, and other aquatic ecosystems, and the ecological complexes of which they are part: this includes diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems.”

Biodiversity covers the variety of life on Earth and is threatened by a number of factors, including:

  • climate change

  • population growth and distribution

  • land- and sea-use change

  • unsustainable resource use and over-exploitation

  • agricultural intensification

  • urban and industrial development

  • nutrient loading

  • the spread of non-native invasive species and diseases

  • pollution.

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