Human impact on biodiversity


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Biodiversity is the variety of life on earth.
Biodiversity provides -food, shelter, medicine and industrial raw materials.
Biodiversity maintains the health of the earth and its people.
Biodiversity is an ecological asset to human beings.

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Human impact on biodiversity

  1. 1. Human Impact on Biodiversity Presented by Dr. B. Victor., Ph. D Email : Blog:
  2. 2. Presentation outline Meaning and origin of biodiversity Earth-Nature-Human relationship Uniqueness of Biodiversity Global ratio of biodiversity What is biodiversity? Why protect biodiversity? Benefits of biodiversity Biodiversity concepts Biodiversity Threats Conservation of biodiversity Biodiversity crisis Closing thoughts
  3. 3. Biodiversity isa contraction of the Two words: "Biological" and "Diversity" 
  4. 4. The meaning of Biodiversity Variety Of Life
  5. 5. Life on Earth Earth is a complex interdependent system of life forms, habitats and fluxes (interactions). Biodiversity is the life-support system for our earth. The air we breathe , the water we drink and the food we eat all depend on the Earth’s rich biodiversity.
  6. 6.  Biodiversity is the variety of life on earth. Biodiversity is the measure of the number, variety and variability of living organisms. Biodiversity refers to diversity within species, between species and among ecosystems .
  7. 7. “The very basis of life on earth is declining at an alarming rate.” -General Kofi Annan, former UN SecretaryUniqueness of Biodiversity
  8. 8. Bio-rich areas on Earth
  9. 9. The goods and services of biodiversity arecrucial for human survival and wellbeing.
  10. 10. Biodiversity is valuable Biodiversity provides -food, shelter, medicine and industrial raw materials. Biodiversity maintains the health of the earth and its people. Biodiversity is an ecological asset to human beings. Biodiversity is the ‘living wealth of the earth’.
  11. 11. Biodiversity is under threat  Biodiversity is a fragile thing, sensitive to all sorts of threats.  Biodiversity is under threat globally, nationally and locally.
  12. 12. Why is biodiversity loss a concern? Biodiversity loss is rapid and ongoing. Over the last 50 years humans have changed ecosystems faster and more extensively. Every year between 17,000 and 100,000 species vanish from our planet.
  13. 13. Cascading or radiating effects of biodiversity loss  Since all living things are interconnected in their ecosystem, human impacts have a cascade effect.  Removal of a species shakes the whole web of life.
  14. 14. Global Distribution ofBiodiversity
  15. 15. The millennium ecosystem assessment identified 5 causes of biodiversity loss
  16. 16. Components of Biodiversity
  17. 17. st r u fusp c n e t ctci u ioes r ns e s Levels of organization
  18. 18. Levels of Biodiversity Genetic diversity – variability in genetic makeup within a species Species diversity – Variety of species on earth Ecosystem (Habitat) diversity – the variety of biological communities and ecosystems on Earth.
  19. 19. Genetic Diversity Genes are the building blocks of life. Genes are the units of inheritance. Genes are made up of DNA. Genetic diversity is identified by the analysis of gene sequence, amount of DNA per cell and chromosome structure and number. Genetic divergence is the basis for evolution.
  20. 20. Species diversityIt represents the different types of plants,animals and other life forms within aregion.It is a dynamic property and changesover space and time.Species diversity is an indicator of thebiological richness/stress of anecosystem.
  21. 21. Ecosystem DiversityIt is the variety of differenthabitats/ecosystems in a particulararea ( e.g.. wetland, woodland,grassland).Every ecosystem can be characterizedby its own species composition.The ecosystems differ in features such asphysical structure, temperature, wateravailability and food types.
  22. 22. Benefits of Biodiversity Biodiversity provides us with food, shelter Medicines and clothing. 80% of our food supply comes from 20 kinds of plants. About 80,000 edible wild plant species could be utilized by humans. Humans use at least 40,000 species of plants and animals a day. More than 50 % of all prescriptions contain natural products.
  23. 23. Industrial benefits A wide range of industrial materials are derived directly from bioresources. E.g., building materials, fibers, dyes, resins, gums, adhesives, rubber and oil.
  24. 24. Ecological benefits  Soil formation  Waste disposal  Air and water purification  Nutrient cycling  Solar energy absorption  Food production
  25. 25. Biological benefitsBiodiversity helps biologicalcommunities withstand stress betterand recover more quickly.95% of the potential pests anddisease-carrying organisms in theworld are controlled by naturalpredators and competitors.
  26. 26. Cultural and aesthetic benefits Cultural identity and spirituality Inspiration for musicians, painters, sculptors, writers and other artists. Leisure activities-bird watching, natural history programs. Aesthetic enjoyment and recreation.
  27. 27. Generation of soils Purification of Control of insect Air / water pestsMaintenance of Natural air Biodiversity Ecosystem conditioning Benefits and Services Decomposition of Store and recycle wastes nutrients Pollination of Production of crops oxygen
  28. 28. Threats tobiodiversity
  29. 29. Species ExtinctionExtinction is the elimination of a species from Earth.A species is considered extinct, when no member ofthe species alive anywhere in the world.Extinction may be a natural or human inducedprocess.Natural extinction is a slow process.Man-made extinction leads to rapid loss of species.Extinctions today are occurring at 100 to 1000 timesfaster than the natural rate.
  30. 30. Causes of Species ExtinctionNatural processes (e.g. fires, hurricanes,droughts);Excessive harvesting of particular species ofeconomic value;Introduction of exotic invasive speciesincluding diseases;Impact of various environmental pollutantschanges in climate; knock-on effects from extinction of essentialcompanion species.
  31. 31. Habitat fragmentationHabitat is the place where an organism orcommunity of organisms lives.Habitat fragmentation occurs when a largeforest is separated into smaller “patches orislands”.
  32. 32. Habitat loss and habitatdegradation  Habitat loss occurs when habitat is converted into other uses.  For example when a pond is filled or a grassland is converted into housing or industrial projects.  Habitat degradation occurs when a habitat is so diminished in quality that species are no longer able to survive.
  33. 33. Invasive species Biotic pollution is the introduction of a foreign species into an area where it is not native. Exotic species change the vegetation, compete with native species and prey on them. Exotic species may hybridize with native species causing genetic pollution (alter gene pool)
  34. 34. Environmental Pollution Acid deposition Global warming Toxic discharges Bacterial contamination Nutrient buildup Plastics
  35. 35. OverexploitationOver-hunting – unregulated huntingPoaching – illegal huntingOver-fishing – harvesting faster than the stocks canreplace themselvesOver-collecting – collecting live organisms for zoos,pet stores, research etc.
  36. 36. Conservation of Biodiversity
  37. 37.  Ex-situ conservation means “off-site” conservation. The species of plants and animals to be protected are removed from the natural habitats and are placed in the safer areas under the control of man. E.g.,Botanical gardens, zoos and Germplasm banks or Seed banks.
  38. 38.  In-situ conservation means “on-site” conservation. i.e. protection of species within the natural habitat of the species of animals and plants. E.g., wildlife sanctuaries, national parks and biosphere reserves etc.
  39. 39. Biological diversity Act 2002 The Government of India introduced Biological Diversity Act in December 2002. Later, Biological Diversity Rules, 2004 were formulated According to this act, any one who destroys biodiversity without approval of authorities is liable to be imprisoned for up-to five years or to pay a fine of Rs.10 lakhs.
  40. 40. How do we restore Ecological Balance/ Biodiversity? Don’t deplete non-renewable resources Use renewable resources efficiently and sustainably Don’t create persistent toxicity Respect and protect biodiversity Follow Organic farming which provides the foundation for restorative agriculture.
  41. 41. Increase public awarenessSupport researchEstablish worldwide system of parks andreservesControl pollutionProvide economic incentives for propermanagementDonate liberally for biodiversityconservation projects /project tiger
  42. 42. Why is the loss of biodiversity, a crisis?  Loss of economic benefits  Loss of ecological services.  Ecosystems more vulnerable to further degradation.
  43. 43. World agencies of biodiversity conservation World Conservation Union World Resources Institute United Nations Environment Programme International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources
  44. 44. If we do not protect nature, nature will not protect us.
  45. 45.  Everything in the biosphere is interconnected. ‘If one strand is broken’ ‘THEN THERE IS COLLAPSE OF THE BIOSPHERE.’ ‘Diversity breeds Diversity’.
  46. 46. • Dr.B.Victor is a highly experienced professor, recently retired from the reputed educational institution- St. Xavier’ s College(autonomous), Palayamkottai, India-627001. He was the dean of sciences, assistant controller of examinations and IQAC co-ordinater. He has more than 32 years of teaching and research experience He has taught a diversity of courses and he has supervised 12 Ph. D research scholars . Send your comments to :
  47. 47. Thanks a lot