NHM’s tracker reveals that the UK's low biodiversity 5 Nov 2021

The Natural History Museum has published a Biodiversity Trends Explorer, drawing on extensive data to help negotiators at the COP15 Convention on Biological Diversity compare the state of ecosystem biodiversity among countries. The tracker also predicts the effects of different economic futures on the natural world. Currently with only 53% of its biodiversity remaining, the UK is in the bottom 10% globally, and far behind China on this metric. NHM’s Professor Andy Purvis said that the excessive loss is because the agricultural and industrial revolutions began first in the UK. He commented “basically, that triggered the mechanised destruction of nature in order to convert it into goods for profit. As a result, the UK has been among the most nature-depleted countries in the world for a long time.” Worldwide, global biodiversity intactness was at 75% in 2020, much less than the 90% needed to avoid dangerous tipping points in the environment. NHM Researcher Dr Adriana De Palma said “the negotiations at COP26 and COP15 can only be successful if the validity of both sides’ positions is clearly understood. The Biodiversity Intactness Index shows this clearly, by providing each country with accurate information, not only on its recent biodiversity trend but also how much nature it has retained. [This data] can help negotiators reach equitable agreements.” The first half of COP15 took place in October – conversation continues in a second half in 2022. NHM, MuseumNext, Guardian