News Focus

Despite Progress, Biodiversity Declines

Science  10 Sep 2010:
Vol. 329, Issue 5997, pp. 1272-1273
DOI: 10.1126/science.329.5997.1272

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Summary

2010, the International Year of Biodiversity, celebrates Earth's glorious variety of species and ecosystems. But many are threatened or damaged, and the 1992 Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) has failed to meet its lofty goal of a significant slowdown in biodiversity loss by 2010. Next month, CBD will meet to adopt a new strategic plan, see p. 1298. The draft revises several of the 21 previous subtargets, such as controlling invasive species and creating more nature reserves. Science examines the major modifications proposed for six central targets. For each, we include a recent example of an advance or setback, as well as the assessment of progress by CBD's Global Biodiversity Outlook 3. The charts show the change over time of key parameters; however, these global trends mask large regional variation.