The rapid decline in biodiversity has linkages to the lack of action in safeguarding the survival and well-being of our biodiversity.
This was the message shared by Minister for Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development, Waterways and Environment Hon. Dr. Mahendra Reddy during the International Biodiversity Day Nature Walk at Colo-i-Suva Forest Park this morning.
“The survival of our biodiversity depends on our actions and it is no secret that our biodiversity life is rapidly declining on a daily basis and this in itself should be a scary notion for us all and the world.
Minister Reddy and officials from the Ministry of Waterways and Environment and Ministry of Forestry walked 3 kilometers around Colo-i-Suva Forest Park to commemorate International Biodiversity Day.
This year’s International Biodiversity Day was celebrated with the theme “Our Biodiversity, Our Food and Our Health”. We have also adopted our own sub theme for this activity which is “Connecting with Nature walk”,” said Dr. Reddy.
“As part of Fiji’s obligation to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) we are one with the 196 other Party members of the International Community in trying to connect our actions to that of conserving our biodiversity and how we can work together in trying to achieve this.
“Recent research by known Scientists and organizations indicate that biodiversity is vital for the security and sustainability of our food production however due to the decline of our biodiversity; food security is also being affected. Also in terms of health; we see organic foods being replaced by processed foods that affect our health,” added Minister Reddy.
He said the Government strives tirelessly to ensure that there are sound measures in place that safeguard the sustainability of our biodiversity and at the same time, ensuring the economic and social development of our country and its people.
“We are all here to reconnect ourselves to the foundation of our earth; that is nature thus the activity theme “Connecting with Nature walk”.
“The Government has reserved Colo-i-Suva Forest Reserve - densely forested land which provides habitat to many species, provides shade, assists in the flowing of the Waisila Creek that eventually connects to the Waimanu River that is the main water catchment for the Nausori and Nasinu Creeks,” said Dr. Reddy.
The contributions of Non-Government Organizations (NGO), civil societies, partners and stakeholders in conserving and sustaining our biodiversity was commended.