A project drawdown for biodiversity

An Ensia opinion article by ASU Center for Biodiversity Outcomes Founding Director Leah Gerber was published on the 50th anniversary of Earth’s Day, identifying viable solutions to combat biodiversity loss through Project Drawdown.

Project Drawdown is an organization that researches the most practical global climate change solutions while sharing their findings with the rest of the world. Just as Project Drawdown pursued interventions for climate change, Gerber believes we need to produce a project drawdown for biodiversity to identify and share solutions to alleviate the biodiversity crisis.

“The conservation community needs a similar gold-standard metric for assessing the impact of biodiversity interventions,” Gerber explains. “And to pick it and create a table similar to Project Drawdown’s, we need to establish a robust evidence base similar to the one Project Drawdown has synthesized.”

The priorities Gerber identifies include (1) investing in corporate funds in biodiversity protection; (2) mainstreaming the value of ecosystems and their services; (3) including biodiversity protection in global sustainability goals; (4) making significant progress on mitigating carbon emissions; (5) mitigating plastic pollution and (6) making sure conservation doesn’t exist in a vacuum.

“There’s still plenty of work to do, but we can see light at the end of the tunnel — enough to know it isn’t the headlight of a train hurtling toward us,” she states. Although we face tremendous challenges in reversing the biodiversity crisis, Gerber reminds us that by working systematically in partnership and through multiple disciplines, we can implement sustainable actions to prevent further demotion of biodiversity.