Conservation biologist Professor Claire Kremen is this year's laureate of the Volvo Environment Prize for her world-class research on how humanity can feed itself while protecting biodiversity.
The world is losing species at an alarming rate. The forests and wild areas of the Earth are rapidly transformed into farmlands, pushing wildlife into steep decline. According to a recent report by the conservation group WWF, the wildlife population has fallen by more than two-thirds in less than 50 years. They recorded an average 68 percent fall in more than 20,000 species of mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles, and fish since 1970.
"With very large-scale agriculture, we are simplifying the landscapes a lot. It makes them much less hospitable for most species," says Claire Kremen, a professor in biodiversity, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.
A way to reverse this catastrophic trend is to change the working lands – agriculture, forestry, and ranches – to more diverse landscapes to preserve biodiversity.
Says the jury of the Volvo Environment Prize Foundation:
"Professor Kremen's work on diversified farming systems and conservation has helped us to understand how the increasingly globalized food system affects biodiversity, sustainability and equity, and - most importantly - how to significantly improve this system so that we can feed ourselves while protecting biodiversity and mitigating climate change."
Read more about the 2020 Environment Prize winner