Why Biodiversity Is Good For The Economy

Hi, this is Emily. You may have noticed that conservation can
be…contentious. But no matter how you feel about bees or trees
or even fleas, here’s one totally practical argument for keeping as many species around
as possible: biodiversity is good for the economy. For example, in a recent study – which,
I should mention, was co-authored by MinuteEarth’s own writer and treecologist Peter Reich – scientists
looked at TONS of forests around the world and found that stands with more tree species
grow faster and bigger than those with fewer species. Which makes sense: trees of a single species
all have the same approaches to getting light, nutrients, and water, so they end up competing
with each other, while trees of different species have different approaches, so they
compete less – and together actually use a larger portion of the available resources. And those gains add up to a lot: the world’s
logged forests produce at least 35% more timber than they would if each stand of trees had
only one species, to the tune of at least 200 billion dollars in additional revenue
each year. This diversity dividend is at least 20 times
more than the total amount of money we currently spend on conservation.And economists are finding
real diversity dividends in other places, too: on farm fields, for instance, different
pollinators go to work at different times, so keeping a diverse set of insects around
helps ensure that crops will bear fruit – and cash – whenever they flower. And in our lakes and rivers, the more kinds
of toxin-munching microbes there are, the more pollutants they can clean up, keeping
down the multi-billion dollar cost of maintaining clean waterways. Of course, it’s hard to give biodiversity
a dollar value in each and every ecosystem – and money probably isn’t the only way
we want to measure the value of nature. But in lots of places, healthier, more diverse
ecosystems appear to translate to a healthier bottom line. So despite what you may have heard, money
really does grow on trees! And bees! We’re… still not sure about fleas. This MinuteEarth video was sponsored by the
University of Minnesota, where students, faculty and staff across all fields of study are working
to solve the Grand Challenges facing society. This video was informed by the research of
University of Minnesota scientists Peter Reich, David Tilman, Forest Isbell, Sarah Hobbie,
and Steve Polasky. The University of Minnesota: Driven to Discover.

100 thoughts on “Why Biodiversity Is Good For The Economy

  1. The amount of care and effort put into each of these videos blows me away every time. Channels like these are what make Youtube a valuable tool for both learning and entertainment. Thank you.

  2. Hi,

    I'm very interested about agriculture and about finding a new way to respect nature while harvesting it. In few years, we will be 3 billions more people, whereas we're absolutely unable to feed the actual population. So we have to do something!
    I am in a ingineer school in France, I really want to be part of this movement. So I'd like to know from your knowledges (anyone is invited to answer) what I could do, maybe there is an university who learn stuff about it ? I am a bit worried about my studies, I don't know what to do in life but I think more and more about working in searchs to find a new way of living on Earth!

  3. Biodiversity also is great for ecotourism, when people tour nature. The more biodiversity, the more people come to tour the place, and it means for cash.

  4. 1:44 Yeah, why value something with money. It's not like money is the most important thing to everyone and makes the world go around. Why not value it instead with flimsy and subjective values like beauty and ethics? #CapitalismIsEvilForSomeReason

  5. Oh boy, those hundreds of birds that fill the same niche in New Guinea and Brazil sure are beneficial for anyone….

  6. wait… look at the production team.. there three siblings. and peter, the co-writer of the paper, is the third one from the top.

  7. While I'm all for biodiversity, you realize spending MORE money is BETTER for the economy, yes? Economy works best when money MOVES; saving money means keeping it in peoples' hands and therefore slowing money circulation.

  8. I guess this is some new kind of ecology that wasn't yet thaught in biology class 10 years ago. I learned that healthy eco-systems have low bio-diversitiy. If you want bio-diversity, find a swamp or polluted lake.

  9. Fleas/Ticks are important for forming social bonds in a primitive primate society before implementation of chemical pesticides. "You Scratch my back, I'll Scratch your back" metaphor takes on a whole new meaning.

  10. The worst species ever
    "Homo Sapiens"
    Too selfish
    Too smart
    Too greedy
    The one species that destroys everything

  11. we should have a balance biodiversityto sustain and to have a healthy environment,this will lead to a better community and a greater economy that we needed to survive and to complete for the increasing demand in money in our society.

  12. Planty bois are way cooler that they may seem to you… including bacterio bois, which of about 99% are harmless and even help us.

  13. that's a question i was wondering about for a while, but your answer clearly are not really about biodiversity in itself. monoculture is bad, abusing pesticides is bad, no one does that but filtering rivers would be bad, i guess.

    what i take from that is that as long as the environment is kind of healthy (not too much pollution and not to much pesticides) we could level the entire amazon rainforest and plant various crops that are not necessarily from the area and everything would be just fine. which i'm pretty sure is not your point.

    so that doesn't answer my question : why would i care about this or that obscure endangered specie ?

  14. nice video i enjoyed your channel. may i ask how did you make the animation? is it powerpoint or powtoons or any software

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