people are helping to make the world a better place, but humanity
as a whole is making it difficult for other living creatures
that share our planet to survive. As humans clear the land to
build, and pollute the land, air and water, wildlife habitats
are being destroyed. Some scientists estimate that each year
140,000 species of plants and animals become extinct -- there
are no more of those kinds of plants or animals left on the
planet! Scientists estimate that if we keep doing what we're
doing, 20% of all living species will be extinct in 30 years,
and half of all living species will be extinct within the next
are concerned about the welfare of plants, animals, microorganisms
and their ecosystems for the sake of these other living creatures
-- humans are not the only ones with the right to live on the
planet. But others point out that protecting other living creatures
and their habitats also protects us -- we need a clean environment
for our own health, and other living creatures are essential
for our food and medicine and other important resources.
the importance of protecting other living species, 150 nations
signed the Convention on Biological Diversity at the Rio Earth
Summit in 1992. One definition of "biological diversity"
or "biodiversity" is the totality of genes, species,
and ecosystems of a region, and this document helps set up real
and tangible goals for nations to achieve in order to protect
living species and their habitats.
Biological Diversity Day (or BioDiversity Day), observed on
May 22, is an opportunity to promote the conservation of biological
diversity and to advocate for the sustainable and equitable
use of the resources of the natural environment.
I was very young, biology, the diversity of life, was
one of my main interests. I know there's this image
people have that I'm this spoiled, cocky punk of an
actor. Honestly, that's not who I am. I really care
that so many species have been wiped out, like genocide
of entire races. I believe in the divine right of all
species to survive on this planet. So I decided I want
to be active as an environmentalist. I learned. I asked
experts. I got active.
-- Leonardo DiCaprio