Biodiversity is defined as “the variability among living organisms from all sources including, inter alia, terrestrial, marine and other aquatic ecosystems and the ecological complexes of which they are part; this includes diversity within species, between species and of ecosystems.”
Forests offer a diverse set of habitats for biodiversity, providing a home to the largest percentage of the world’s terrestrial species. Now, these species are threatened by the loss of forests and unregulated felling of trees. In growing cities such as Hyderabad, with the recent expansion of urban and industrial zones, there has been an unprecendented loss of lung spaces, posing a risk to wildlife, public health and balance in ecological systems. This alteration to the topography of cities has given rise to the concept of urban forestry, which recognises that trees play a critical role in urban structures and ecosystems, while addressing the impact of urbanisation on forests.
Why does Forum's work matter?
Forests, and the incredible diversity of life that inhabits them, provide a wide range of ecosystem services. Then forests are threatened by unregulated felling and encroachments, the flora and fauna found in these forests are also at risk. In cities, especially, with dense forests being converted into concrete jungles, urgency is imperative. As a source of oxygen, and a means to regulate temperature and heat islands, urban forests provide a great antidote against the changing landscape of brick and cement.