WHY IS BIODIVERSITY AN IMPORTANT ISSUE?
Biological diversity – or BIODIVERSITY – refers to the wide variety of plants, animals and microorganisms that inhabit the planet. It also refers to the interdependence of species – species work together in an ecosystem to maintain balance and support life.
But human activity is putting pressure on biodiversity. Increasing population levels and rising consumption of resources risk upsetting the balance of ecosystems and accelerating biodiversity loss.
A report issued by the United Nations (UN) in 2019 estimates that up to one million plant and animal species – out of a known 8 million – are threatened with extinction. The current rate of habitat and species decline is unprecedented and threatens the foundations of economies, food security, health and livelihoods.
Addressing biodiversity challenges is critical to the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, a plan of action for people, planet and prosperity that establishes 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). SDG #15: Life on Land aims to protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems and sustainable management of forests, combat desertification, halt and reverse land degradation, and halt biodiversity loss.
Businesses are expected to play a significant role in achieving the bold and transformative steps urgently needed to shift the world onto a sustainable and resilient path and achieve the SDGs. Toyota is committed to doing our part to operate and live in harmony with nature. That’s why Toyota named “Biodiversity” as one of our four environmental sustainability focus areas in North America and why, globally, it is the focus of the Harmony With Nature Challenge in the Toyota Environmental Challenge 2050.