Sustainable Water Management Critical To Preserving Global Biodiversity

Inter Press Service: We Can’t Halt Extinctions Unless We Protect Water
Claudia Sadoff, director general at International Water Management Institute (IWMI)

“Global biodiversity loss has reached critical levels. One million species of plants and animals are now estimated to be at risk of extinction. … Countries would do well to consider this: our ability to preserve species hinges to a great extent on the actions we take to protect freshwater ecosystems. Safeguarding water for the environment is critical for biodiversity and for people. … A key approach for reversing this trend centers on ensuring that water continues to flow in a way that will sustain aquatic ecosystems, thereby supporting populations, economies, sustainable livelihoods, and well-being. … This means maintaining the right quality, quantity, and timing of water flows — which scientists call ‘environmental flows,’ or ‘E-flows’ for short. … Too much of our biodiversity depends on water for us to overlook sustainable water management as a key part of the solution to species extinction. The time has come for a more concerted effort to stem the loss of aquatic ecosystems and of the myriad species that inhabit them” (5/31).

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