Protect biodiversity for a resilient future – Pohamba

Ellanie Smit
Despite the undeniable significance of biodiversity, it faces unprecedented threats from human activities, environment minister Pohamba Shifeta said at the commemoration of International Biodiversity Day last week.
Held in Lüderitz under the theme 'Be Part of the Plan', the minister said: “Deforestation, habitat destruction, pollution, climate change and the unsustainable exploitation of natural resources are placing immense pressure on ecosystems worldwide.”
The consequences of biodiversity loss are far-reaching, the minister said, affecting everything from food security and human health to economic stability and cultural heritage.
Shifeta said the only way to reduce the decline in biodiversity loss is to transform people’s roles, responsibilities, actions and their relationship to nature and the biodiversity within it.
Shifeta said this year’s theme is a call to action for all stakeholders to halt and reverse the loss of biodiversity by supporting the implementation of the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework, also referred to as the Biodiversity Plan.
He said Namibia, through the ministry, has already started the process of stakeholder consultation to review the achievements and challenges and identify gaps and bottlenecks regarding the implementation of the National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan.
“This year we have chosen to commemorate this day in the ||Karas Region, which is home to biodiversity resources within the terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems.”
Shifeta said the region is endowed with a lot of mineral resources, which significantly contribute to national income and employment, and as a result, it is also faced with many environmental issues that may lead to the loss of biodiversity.
The day serves as an opportunity for individuals and businesses to come together and commit to taking concrete steps towards preserving and restoring biodiversity for a more sustainable and resilient future.
“This reminds us that it is never too late to reverse the damage done to our planet. By restoring degraded ecosystems, rewilding landscapes, and promoting sustainable land management practices, we can revitalise biodiversity and create a more resilient future for both people and nature.”