The Need to Conserve Wildlife
Wildlife conservation is preserving plants, animals, and their habitats. Increased human population and activities gradually push the planet’s flora and fauna into extinction. Humans have increasingly relied on natural resources, and this reliance may escalate.
Over the past four decades, global wildlife has lost 10,000 species per year. Governments are encouraged to intervene and develop policies to mitigate this destructive pattern and loss of biodiversity.
The United States government, however, conserves wildlife habitats. Government policies have established many sanctuaries, national parks, wildlife refuges, and forests. Additionally, the US government funds projects that preserve wildlife and its habitats. A significant portion of these resources comes from excise duties imposed on fishing rods, bait, and fishing licenses.
The US government also develops policies to protect endangered species from extinction. The Endangered Species Act of 1973 mitigates the exploitation of plants and animals by hunters and fishers. Additionally, the US population has been educated on the need to preserve wildlife.
Unfortunately, government policies addressing wildlife conservation have become weak. One reason behind this is the influence of for-profit corporations that negotiate for leniency to exploit natural resources. These corporations pay high taxes and fund government projects, making them valuable entities. They get the freedom to dump their waste in water bodies, cut down trees, and release industrial gases into the atmosphere.
Governments should prioritize wildlife conservation because it benefits humans and nature. For example, bees, birds, and insects are essential to pollination. They feed on the nectar of flowers, and their activities enable plant reproduction and growth. Therefore, conserving these species is crucial to food production.
Conservation also protects plants and animals with medicinal value. Many drugs contain ingredients derived from wildlife. For instance, lobsters develop antifungals, and medication for leprosy contains cobra venom.
Wildlife also contributes to the economy. Wildlife diversity attracts local and foreign tourists. Tourism creates employment opportunities for many professions and businesses. Hotels, tour companies, and restaurants benefit from tourism and receive incentives to hire chefs, tour guides, and hotel management personnel.
Tourism accounted for about a 10th of the world’s gross domestic product (GDP) before COVID-19. International visitors spent an average of $1.8 trillion, and over 10.3 percent of global jobs were in the travel and tourism sector.
Humans and animals thrive under the ecological stability promoted by wildlife conservation. Trees, for instance, are vital in regulating atmospheric carbon dioxide and oxygen levels. Additionally, trees help conserve water and mitigate soil erosion. This ecological balance is imperative for the survival of plants, animals, and humans.
Conservation also preserves the global culture and heritage. Wildlife is associated with the areas that host them, which is tied to the culture of the surrounding population. Therefore, wildlife extinction could lead to the loss of these populations, their land, and their native heritage.
Besides, wildlife conservation enhances scientific research. Plants and animals are important sources of medicine and are viable for assessing the effectiveness of new drugs. Researchers also claim that natural resources assist in developing agricultural diversity. Successful research projects promise to improve food security and support farming efficiency.
Similarly, conservation supports recreational activities. The aesthetic value of wildlife promotes holiday activities, including fishing, camping, hiking, and watching wildlife. Researchers maintain that these activities lower the risk of developing stress.