Importance of Natural Resources

Biodiversity @WUR: our work to prevent the loss of species

If you saw the news this week, you’d know
that we are heading for a major crisis for biodiversity: the plants and animals
that we value so much. I’m standing now in the biodiversity
garden behind the buildings at Wageningen University & Research.
This is biodiversity: it’s the green, it’s the plants, the trees, the birds, in the
water and on the land. The biodiversity garden was over there and we’ve just moved to the other side of the hedge We’re now on our farm and here
we are growing biodiversity because crops are biodiversity as well and there’s
biodiversity in the soil. Vitally important for food production and
keeping us healthy and alive actually. And across our farm system, we’re looking at different ways of managing the land in order to increase biodiversity and
try to reverse some of the impacts that have caused the loss of these million
species we were talking about earlier and one of the fantastic results that
we’ve had in recent years is that the partridge numbers, which were less than
five pairs, have increased to over 20, now in this year, breeding. So now I come in
from the fields and as much as I’d rather be out there, this is actually my natural
ecosystem. Here is where we take the research that we’ve done out there and
turn it into policy and practice. We help policymakers to target their funding to
farmers in order that they can make some of the changes for wildlife-sensitive
farming that we’ve seen out in those fields. We can also help them to write
business plans that are nature-inclusive and actually that kind of process is a
kind of magic and that’s why we work here.

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