We also do our part.
Global challenges such as climate change, the spread of pandemics, and the loss of biodiversity at an unprecedented rate are clearly telling us that the time has come to fundamentally rethink our relationship with nature. This is even more important in our country, where Nature and History have co-evolved so strongly that it is our own cultural model that needs to be redesigned.
If we think about biodiversity, we note that the global population of wild species has declined by 60% in the last 40 years. About 75% of the planet’s landmass and 40% of marine environments have been drastically changed.
The unsustainable use of land and sea, overexploitation and pollution of natural resources, climate change and invasive exotic species are the main causes of this loss of biodiversity. Scientists, in their frequent warnings, have begun to speak of a sixth mass extinction, the first caused by a single species after the previous five.
Today in Italy, terrestrial and inland water habitats are in favourable Conservation Status in only 8% of cases, while they are unfavourable in 89% (49% inadequate, 40% bad), showing a general negative trend compared to the previous ten-year reporting cycle. The situation is particularly worrying in the agricultural systems of the lowlands, where there is also a high level of land fragmentation.
The stresses generated by these environmental challenges increasingly require us to design a more resilient society, capable of adapting to and withstanding climatic upheavals while restoring, protecting and enjoying the natural and semi-natural habitats in which we live. Will we be capable of this? The paradox is that we depend so heavily on nature for food, water, clothing, medicine, timber, and recreation that this degradation of habitats damages ourselves, our physical and mental well-being, and the environment itself in the first instance.
“Build a future shared with all species” is the appeal launched by the United Nations to resolve this paradox, an appeal that FAI has decided to take up by launching #faibiodiversity, a communication campaign to reflect on the co-evolution of nature and history, so strong in our country, but also on the current cultural model and its limits when it impacts nature so heavily. To reflect on the role of the human builder (the gardener of the global garden) who stands out from other species for his responsibility towards his environment, as he stands out for his knowledge and conscience.
Indeed, it is important that everyone plays their part today, from states down to the individual citizen.
For FAI, its properties become the ‘grounding’ of this challenge, in fact, they also represent an extraordinary heritage of biodiversity, with a particular variety of habitats, from the pastures of Pedroria in the Orobic Alps to the saline (salt marshes) of Cagliari, a wetland of international importance; from the historical garden of Villa Panza to the genetic variability preserved in the vegetable garden on the Colle dell’Infinito in Recanati; from the Bosco di San Francesco with its forest management inherited over the centuries to the coastal vegetation of the Baia di Ieranto with the marine reserve as the protagonist or the Parco di Villa Gregoriana with its lush nature.
Within this biodiverse world, FAI operates through study, monitoring and species protection activities, and organises events and meetings aimed at raising public and visitor awareness of the urgent need to know and protect the biodiversity of our territories, for a future shared with all species.