One of the major things that exist in this world is biodiversity. It constitutes the major components of our living. However, it is important to pay attention to the disappearance of biodiversity which has been connected with so many humans activities. Babatunde Olarewaju, an agricultural extension expert who is also the lead strategist at FutuX Agri-consult Limited in his weekly Letters to farmers discussed the impact of preserving biodiversity and practical ways to the approach.
Nature has provided human beings with the best of its resources – supporting the existence and sustainability of life on earth. However, the increasing population of human beings on earth and increasing human activities are putting a lot of pressure on the resources of nature. Agriculture is one of the human activities that is exploiting the resources of nature to produce food. Therefore, the sustainability of agriculture is hinged on conservation and sustainable use of natural resources in order to achieve food security.
Furthermore, it is important that smallholder farmers are aware and knowledgeable on the impact of the short and long term activities on the resources of the environment and are able to develop sustainable plans to ensure that the ecosystem is maintained. Thus, there is a need for biodiversity incorporated in production activities. As more lands are being opened for production, natural vegetation is being cut down and habitats of natural species are being destroyed, it is vital to maintain ecosystem balance by creating semi-natural habitats for these species, promoting tree plantings as hedge crops amongst other practices that encourage biodiversity.
Also, practices such as contour plowing, contour ridging, cover cropping, integrated pest management, and other environmentally friendly practices help to promote biodiversity in agriculture, which are considered as coping strategies of climate change. These practices reduce the impact of climate change on food production, as well as promote the sustainability of rural livelihood. It is of great importance to note that biodiversity is the responsibility of all agricultural stakeholders and should be encouraged by various value chains. Sadly, our new reality has made it clear to us that a threat to food security is a threat to human existence, therefore, we must work together to fight our common enemy, poverty/hunger, and promote wealth creation (leading to prosperity among the most vulnerable groups in the World).