WWF collaboration to monitor biodiversity in Italian organic and conventional agri-systems

On our current trajectory of habitat loss and global warming, scientists predict that nearly 40% of all species on Earth will face extinction by the end of this century. The ongoing talks taking place at the United Nations’ COP15 on biodiversity have shown that new protections and better enforcement mechanisms are urgently needed – but barriers like financing still remain.

According to the UN, we have around a decade to avert the Earth’s sixth mass extinction and if we are successful, transformational change is required in how we produce food.

Intensive industrial agriculture has had a devastating impact on global biodiversity, WWF Italy stressed. In 2021, the UN Environmental Program (UNEP) reported that the global food system is the primary driver of biodiversity loss, with agriculture alone responsible for 86% of the extinction-level threats facing 28,000 species. Moreover, 80% of global deforestation, 60% of fresh water usage, and 23% of greenhouse gas emissions are attributable to the impact of agriculture.

The European Commission has recognized that agricultural biodiversity is on the decline in the EU, responding with a common agricultural policy that includes the aim of enhancing the variety of species, habitats, and landscape features found in EU farmland ecosystems.

In this context, WWF Italy, Rainforest Connection, and Huawei Italy recently renewed collaboration on the Nature Guardian series of area-based conservation projects. The second phase aims to study agriculture’s impact on biodiversity in Italy using innovative audio-monitoring technologies.