Nature in Crisis

Gray image of dried up treesOn December 5, ASU Center for Biodiversity Outcomes Founding Director Leah Gerber shared her insight on identifying key priorities in biodiversity efforts through a high-level conversation on Politico. This talk called “Nature in Crisis” was joined by Rep. Raúl Grijalva from The House Committee of Natural Resources, Linda Krueger from The Nature Conservancy, and Nick Juliano from Politico, moderating the talk. Much of the conversation addressed the dire consequences from the findings of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services global assessment, stating 1 million species of the estimated 8 million species of plants and animals on Earth are threatened with extinction. According to Gerber, “Habitat loss, overexploitation, pollution, introduced species and climate change are direct factors that have put one million species under threat of extinction.” Politico Panelists Some of the solutions suggested that could have the greatest impact in conserving include (1) protection of natural areas, (2) working with the agriculture and construction sectors to implement sustainable practices, and (3) mainstreaming biodiversity for consideration in the economic sector. With biodiversity being the topic of interest, many directed questions at Gerber because of her contribution to the IPBES global assessment and foundation to CBO. She eloquently stated, “It is unequivocal that biodiversity is the foundation of our economy. We could also argue that biodiversity is like art; it’s priceless.” Following the events of the Politico talk, the Natural Resources Committee marked up the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act. This act has a significant investment in collaborative wildlife conservation that restores wildlife land and supports Native groups. Click here to watch the talk.