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What is Biodiversity?

Biodiversity is the short term used for ‘biological diversity’, which is ‘the total variety of all living plants and animals, and the habitats in which they live’.  It encompasses the entire range of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, invertebrates, plants, fungi and micro-organisms. 

Why is biodiversity important?

Biodiversity plays an integral part of our everyday lives. It provides us with essential goods and services that we could not live without – the oxygen we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat. The intrinsic value of biodiversity cannot be over-estimated, adding beauty and variety to our surroundings.

Biodiversity: It’s our duty

The Wildlife and Natural Environment Act (NI) 2011 places a statutory duty on all public bodies with regard to biodiversity.  “It is the duty of every public body, in exercising any functions, to further the conservation of biodiversity so far as is consistent with the proper exercise of those functions.”

The Act requires public bodies to take reasonable steps to further the conservation of priority habitats and species. This will help ensure that Northern Ireland meets European and international commitments to work towards halting biodiversity loss. Local Biodiversity Action Plans can make a significant contribution to these obligations.

You can view the Mid Ulster Biodiversity Action Plan below. To get involved in it contact 

Mark Edgar, Biodiversity Officer.

E-mail: mark.edgar@midulstercouncil.org

Tel: 03000 132132

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