International Day for Biological Diversity

by JulieCraves on May 22, 2008

Today is International Day for Biological Diversity and the theme for this year is Biodiversity and Agriculture. The sponsor is the Convention on Biological Diversity, an international treaty initiated at the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro.

This year’s theme highlights the importance of sustainable agriculture to the preservation of biodiversity. While agriculture contributes significantly to conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity, it has also been a major driver of biodiversity loss primarily through land-use conversion, which is expected to remain the largest cause of biodiversity loss beyond 2010 to at least 2050. Agriculture also contributes to dwindling biodiversity through intensification of agricultural production systems, excessive chemical and water use, nutrient loading, and pollution — all issues relevant to technified sun coffee production.

The Santa Marta Sabrewing (Campylopterus phainopeplus) is an endangered hummingbird that is only found in the Santa Marta mountains of northeast Colombia. In the dry season, it is often found in shade coffee plantations, but the number of shade farms is decreasing, and along with them, birds and other wildlife that depend on them.

This species is included in the recently released 2007 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, the authoritative global database of the world’s most vulnerable species. You can help by making a donation to support the IUCN’s conservation efforts, or the work of one of its partners, BirdLife International.

And, as always, drink sustainably-grown coffee.

Revised on November 14, 2019

Posted in Coffee and the environment

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