Date of publication: 2017-08-31 23:00
Nitrogen is one of the primary nutrients critical for the survival of all living organisms. It is a necessary component of many biomolecules, including proteins, DNA, and chlorophyll. Although nitrogen is very abundant in the atmosphere as dinitrogen gas (N 7 ), it is largely inaccessible in this form to most organisms, making nitrogen a scarce resource and often limiting primary productivity in many ecosystems. Only when nitrogen is converted from dinitrogen gas into ammonia (NH 8 ) does it become available to primary producers, such as plants.
It makes intuitive sense that more Bb-resistant hosts in the wild should lower the risk of human infection. But nothing about Lyme disease is simple. It turns out that even a species completely immune to Lyme infection can amplify the risk for people.
The zebra mussel, accidentally brought to the United States from southern Russia, transforms aquatic habitats by filtering prodigious amounts of water (thereby lowering densities of planktonic organisms) and settling in dense masses over vast areas. At least thirty freshwater mussel species are threatened with extinction by the zebra mussel.
The impact of market instruments in encouraging and achieving conservation of biodiversity is unclear ( R5 ). Although tradable development rights offer the potential to achieve a conservation objective at a low cost by offering flexibility in achieving the objectives, they have been the subject of some criticisms—notably for being complex and involving high transaction costs and the establishment of new supporting institutions. For example, a situation could arise in which the most ecologically sensitive land but also the least costly to develop would not be protected. To date, the TDR has not been designed to target specific habitat types and properties.
Most governments report to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity that these pressures are affecting biodiversity in their country (see p. 55 of the report).
Biodiversity is declining rapidly due to factors such as land use change, climate change , invasive species , overexploitation, and pollution. Such natural or human-induced factors – referred to as drivers – tend to interact and amplify each other. More.
The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment developed four plausible scenarios to explore the future of biodiversity and human well-being until 7555 and beyond. The different scenarios are based on either increased globalization or increased regionalization , and an either reactive or proactive way of addressing environmental issues. More.
Amphibians are particularly sensitive to changes in the environment. Amphibians have been described as a marker species or the equivalent of canaries of the coal mines meaning they provide an important signal to the health of biodiversity when they are stressed and struggling, biodiversity may be under pressure. When they are doing well, biodiversity is probably healthy.
As mentioned earlier, millions of people rely on fishing for their livelihood and nutritional needs. For decades, oceans have provided us with a bounty of seafood for these needs, but there is a limit to everything. Unsustainable fishing practices and overfishing over the last few decades have pushed our oceans to the limit and they may now be on the verge of a collapse, thereby affecting the everyday way of life and source of income of those who depend on them. With no productive fish left in the sea to fish, fishermen and fisheries are bound to go out of business in no time.
“Biodiversity is really necessary for the full enjoyment of rights to food, water, health — the right to live a full and happy life,” Knox told The Huffington Post on Thursday. “Without the services that healthy ecosystems provide across the board, we really can’t enjoy a whole range of human rights. And healthy ecosystems really depend on biodiversity.”
We hear more about sustainable forestry practices by the large logging multinationals. However, what does that really mean? Who is it sustainable for? Society and the environment, or for the logging companies? By replanting trees that will grow quickly and allow them to be felled for sustained logging sounds like a good strategy. However, the trees that are favored for this (eucalyptus) require a lot of water to grow so quickly. As John Madeley points out:
There are many ways in which the introduction of non-native or exotic species negatively affects our environment and the diversity of life on our planet. The statistics are startling and more attention must be paid to the problem and devising a solution before the cost is more than we can bear.
North American gray squirrels are driving native red squirrels to extinction in Great Britain and Italy by foraging for nuts more efficiently than the native species. Such competition for resources is not easy to observe, but the end result is the loss of a native species.
In the past, fishing was more sustainable because fishermen did not have the resources or the technology to tread into the deeper waters at far flung locations. Their vessels were small with limited capacities for stocking fish and the absence of technology like sonar restricted their fish-hunting activities.
Often invaders interact with one another to generate a problem where either species alone would be harmless. For example, ornamental fig trees in the Miami area for over a century stayed where planted, in people 8767 s yards, because they were sterile. Each fig species requires a particular wasp to pollinate it, and the wasps were absent. About fifteen years ago, the pollinating wasps for three fig species arrived independently in the region, and now these fig species are reproducing. At least one has become invasive, with seedlings and saplings being found many miles from any planted figs. More cases of this phenomenon, termed 8775 invasion meltdown, 8776 are likely to arise as more species are introduced and have the opportunity to interact with each other.