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Biodiversity: Saving the Plants and Animals

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Ever wonder how humans are affecting biodiversity through their daily tasks? Every day there are workers building new homes, shopping malls, and schools. To have enough space, they’ll have to clear forest out with the animals. This is causing the US tons of money and loss in plants and animals. Although the biodiversity in the United States is decreasing tremendously due to loss and degradation of suitable habitat, it can be slowed down or even stopped, by building sanctuaries, reserving forests, recycling, etc. Biodiversity or biological diversity is a collection of life, habitat, or ecosystem in the world. Biological diversity is the resource which families, communities, nations and future generations depend on, WWF said. Biodiversity is the building block that holds every organism on planet earth together. Biodiversity is important to mostly everything living. Without it there would not be many basic needs humans need to survive in our world such as food, fuel, shelter and even medicine. The ecosystem provides services like pollination for the flowers, climate change, water cleanses, etc. Humans are the cause of the lack of biodiversity today!

The main cause that is causing species to die is habitat loss. Habitat loss can be caused my many different things like infrastructure, pollution, overpopulation, etc. Infrastructure is the basic physical and organizational structures and facilities built. Due to the amount of infrastructure being done a huge amount of habitats have been destroyed. This causes the animals/plants to become isolated due to the lack of space. Once they become isolated, they tend to die off which can cause some species to become extinct. While species start to go extinct it will be harder for humans to survive. Without certain species food would be lost and everything will eventually die off because of starvation or dehydration.

Not only is infrastructure causing a weak biodiversity, but pollution causes a lot of damage to our biodiversity as well. Air pollution affects the ecosystem by sulfur and nitrogen emissions. These emissions settle into water, vegetation, and soil this is then called ‘acid rain’. When acid rain is released, this will then cause the ecosystem to stop providing its services. These services include: Provisional such as food and water; regulation such as flood and disease control; cultural, such as spiritual, recreational, and cultural benefits; and supporting such as nutrient cycling that maintain conditions. When acid rain goes into soil not only does, it affects the ecosystem but it also affects humans drinking water, through groundwater seepage.

While acid rain is bad, overpopulation can be just as bad. Overpopulation can cause a shortage in certain natural resources like food, water, and supplies needed for shelter. Due to overpopulation, there are currently forty million people in the US without food, said the USDA. Out of those forty million only fifteen million had shelter. We can fix all of these problems with some very helpful solutions like building sanctuaries. Due to overpopulation, the amount of food available has decreased extensively. A substantial amount of plant species will generally mean that a greater variety of available food crops. The global food supply is now being viewed as somewhat questionable because of the widespread use of just a few genetic varieties of the major crops. This raises the specter of widespread famine should a disease or parasite emerge, that attacks one or more major crops. This disease can be spread worldwide by modern transportation, could eliminate a large part of global grain production in a short period of time. Disease can be spread through crops by animals consuming them then humans eating the animals or by humans consuming the crop. Either way it will cause a widespread of diseases and without a cure or medicine everything in the world would eventually die.

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“Building more sanctuaries in city like areas would help the world from crumbling down. This will help the lost and abandoned animals have a home to live and it will keep the biodiversity high. A wildlife sanctuary is a place of refuge where abused, injured and abandoned captive wildlife may live in for the rest of their lives” (‘Performing Animal Welfare Society – PAWS’) . When there are more animals in the US this lowers the chance of starvation and dehydration. With the animals in sanctuaries and shelters they can be bred and this will cause the animal population size to grow and the more it grows the less people in the US will be starving. Most sanctuaries do not allow breeding so it will be hard to reproduce. Reproducing is important animals are needed so that humans can have a good source of meat and other foods.

Pollution could be slowed down by having the US recycle more so that they can be reused for something useful. Instead of having multiple trash cans everywhere we should have multiple recycling cans and reduce the amount of trash cans. By doing so US citizens will then be forced to recycle instead of throwing things away. The trash is dumped in landfills which eventually causes glasses to escape into the air. When water gets in the trash it then creates a toxic liquid called leachate which can get into water pipes if people live near landfills. This is why recycling is so important instead of dumping everything out. Using renewable resources can reduce the amount of acid rain that is produced from harmful gasses. When using natural resources, they will not harm the biodiversity. Not everyone in the US will actually care enough to recycle which causes a problem when it comes to landfills. The more trash is thrown away into landfills the more harmful gasses are released into the oxygen that humans breathe. When released in the air that cause the acid rain mentioned earlier.

A great way to stop infrastructure from occurring in the US is to make more forest reserves. Forest reserves are portions of state land, where taking trees down is prohibited so that the biodiversity can stay manageable. There are small reserves with small amounts of land that are capable of holding rare species this is called a patch. Patch reserves will typically be relatively small (tens or hundreds of acres) and will be defined by the extent of the unique resources intended for conservation. A matrix however, is a large reserve that will support a wider diversity of tree sizes and ages than typically occurs on sustainably harvested sites, and will also support structures and processes associated with extensive accumulations of large woody debris that are typically absent from harvested sites. Matrix reserve size should be based on the expected extent of natural disturbance events. Reserves show how forest ecosystems work when timber and other wood products that are normally taken for human use remain in place. In order to support human society, it is important to retain portions of forested landscapes in a condition where all components of the ecosystem remain in place. “Forest reserves allow us to more fully assess human impacts on harvested sites, and may provide insights into how extractive management of harvested forestlands can be improved” (‘Sustainable Forest Management’). The US has a lot of forests already but is it enough forest to maintain the United States biodiversity?

National parks can help plants and animals be healthy and strong. As President Franklin D. Roosevelt said, “There is nothing so American as our national parks…the fundamental idea behind the parks…is that the country belongs to the people, that it is in the process of making for the enrichment of the lives of all of us”. Although national parks are beautiful, they also help bring in more oxygen due to the amount of plants and trees that are in the park. Not only that but it also may have rare species because of the rare habitats that some of these parks may have. There are all kinds of different wildlife in national parks, but certain species such as the gray wolf have been brought back from the brink of extinction due to the efforts of the park service. These wolves, and similar animals elsewhere, play a vital role in their ecosystem and ensure its health in the long term.

Biodiversity has seen a significant decrease in the United States because of the loss of habitat caused by so many things. There are so many solutions that could be used to solve this problem. The main solutions are recycling, more forest reserves, national parks and sanctuaries. The US should respond immediately with this problem before it is too late!

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Biodiversity: Saving the Plants and Animals. (2022, December 15). Edubirdie. Retrieved February 9, 2023, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/biodiversity-saving-the-plants-and-animals/
“Biodiversity: Saving the Plants and Animals.” Edubirdie, 15 Dec. 2022, edubirdie.com/examples/biodiversity-saving-the-plants-and-animals/
Biodiversity: Saving the Plants and Animals. [online]. Available at: <https://edubirdie.com/examples/biodiversity-saving-the-plants-and-animals/> [Accessed 9 Feb. 2023].
Biodiversity: Saving the Plants and Animals [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Dec 15 [cited 2023 Feb 9]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/biodiversity-saving-the-plants-and-animals/
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