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Why We Need Wetlands

This year, the parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity will adopt an ambitious global biodiversity roadmap to guide progress toward a future in which humans genuinely live in harmony with nature. To achieve that goal, conservation and restoration of the world's declining wetlands is essential.

GLAND, SWITZERLAND – It’s called the Extinction Wing. Located in a dark corner of the Paris Museum of Natural History, it houses a haunting collection of species that have long vanished from the natural world. With biodiversity declining faster than at any time in human history, what size museum will future generations need?

We now face a sixth mass extinction, in which an estimated one million species are predicted to disappear. Does it matter? We survived the dodo’s demise and, though tragic, will the imminent extinction of the northern rhino really affect our lives?

In fact, it will. All living things on our planet depend on healthy and diverse ecosystems for air, water, and nutritious food. These same ecosystems regulate the climate and provide the raw materials and resources on which our economies – and lives – depend. The annual global value of natural services each year is estimated to be $125 trillion.

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