Biodiversity is the engine of our planet.

It’s often defined as the “variety of all living things.” Our founder Dr. Jane Goodall calls it “the tapestry of life”. 

There are millions of ecosystems around the world, and each one is a complex web of interacting species. All those species work together, and help our planet breathe and grow. But when one thread of the tapestry is pulled out, the whole thing starts to unravel.

Human activity is rapidly accelerating the pace of biodiversity loss around the world. With over a million species at risk, we’re experiencing the first mass extinction since the age of the dinosaurs. This time, humanity is the asteroid.

But here at JGIC, there are reasons for hope.

Banner photo by Michelle Valberg.

Biodiversity Loss: Reasons for Hope

Share this video with friends and family to remind them that hope for a better world is in their hands.

By the Numbers


mass extinction in 65 million years is happening as you read this.


decline in vertebrate populations over the past 50 years in Canada and Africa.


of land masses have been significantly affected by human activity.


species are on the brink of extinction right at this very moment.

The Convergence of 3 Crises

Here’s how biodiversity loss connects with climate change and environmental inequity.

Biodiversity loss hurts our ability to fight climate change.

  • Forests absorb a lot of greenhouse gases from our atmosphere. When we cut trees, we lose that ability. Not to mention, the carbon stored in the wood is released back into the atmosphere.
  • The white surfaces of glaciers reflect the sun’s rays and help reduce heating. But climate change is melting those glaciers, transforming white reflective areas into dark sea water. This dark water actually absorbs more solar heat, and accelerates global warming.

Environmental inequity is a huge factor here.

  • As developed countries like Canada source products (like cell phones) from developing countries like Africa, local raw materials are depleted. Pollution, waste and toxicity increase. Habitats and species are destroyed (see our The Forest is Calling campaign for more). 
  • Many of our most marginalized communities, including Indigenous populations, live in rural areas. They may be more reliant on nature for their livelihoods. They’re also affected by activities like mining and logging, making them more vulnerable to biodiversity loss and climate change. 

Photos courtesy of award-winning photographer Michelle Valberg.

The best days of my life were when I could spend hours in the rainforest and learn how everything was interconnected in this wonderful tapestry of life.

Dr. Jane Goodall

How We’re Tackling Biodiversity Loss

Africa Programs

Tchimpounga Rehabilitation Sanctuary

We support the critical work of caregivers to rehabilitate orphaned chimpanzees.

Photo: Sophie Muset



This global campaign aims to end illegal wildlife trafficking, a major cause of biodiversity loss around the world.

News & Updates

Dr. Jane

 An Urgent Call for Integrated Solutions at COP28 

This statement was published by the Jane Goodall Institute global family, of which JGI Canada is a proud part. The Climate crisis is here with us as we approach COP 28. Forests are burning. Oceans are rising. Studies show we have less than a decade to prevent temperatures from growing more than 1.5 degrees. Anything […]

News and Updates

Dr. Jane Goodall Urges the Government to Pass the Jane Goodall Act

To Members of the Standing Committee on Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources:  I am writing to express my support for the Jane Goodall Act (Bill S-241) that is currently under consideration by the Canadian Senate Committees and reaffirm my endorsement of this important bill.  When Senator Murray Sinclair first approached me to lend my […]

News and Updates

U of T Students Empower Educators: New Guides Address Climate Change, Biodiversity Loss, and Environmental Equity

Attention young activists and educators of Toronto! Our beloved city faces significant threats, and we must rise to the challenge. Students from the University of Toronto have created resources to help! A dedicated team of student volunteers from the University of Toronto have created educator resources about three unprecedented crises that students face: biodiversity loss, […]