It is estimated that between 200 and 350 million people live within or adjacent to forested areas around the world. These populations rely heavily on the various ecosystem services provided by forest and forest species for their livelihoods and to cover their most basic needs, including food, shelter, energy and medicines.
Roughly 28% of the world’s land surface is currently managed by indigenous peoples, including some of the most ecologically intact forests on the planet.
These spaces are not only central to their economic and personal well-being, but also to their cultural identities. Indigenous peoples and local communities are at the forefront of the symbiotic relationship between humans and forest, forest-dwelling wildlife species and the ecosystem services they provide.
Forests, forest species and the livelihoods that depend on them currently find themselves at the crossroads of the multiple planetary crises we currently face, from climate change, to biodiversity loss and the health, social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Overfishing is another area garnering much attention as it poses a significant threat to our oceans ecosystems. To learn more, follow this link for a more in depth article on overfishing.