Biodiversity is a basic feature of nature, which determines the diversity of ecosystems, living species and their genes. With increased diversity in a natural environment comes more stability, better functioning and, as a consequence, resistance to changes.

The exact number of species on Earth is unknown. Scientists estimate that there are currently about 8.7 (±1.3) million. Unfortunately, many of them become extinct before being discovered and each extinction is an irreversible loss!


The loss of biodiversity is the greatest threat to the proper functioning of life on Earth.
Each species has its place and a specific function in the ecosystem. Its death brings about more instability in the ecosystem. Living organisms influence each other. They are interconnected, for example by food dependencies, which allow matter to circulate and energy to flow in nature. Green plants perform photosynthesis, in which water and carbon dioxide form simple organic compounds under the influence of light. This is why we call them producers. There are also consumers: herbivores – first level consumers, carnivores – second and third level consumers, as well as organisms that break down organic matter – destruents. Organisms can be united in competing for light, food, living space, water, mineral salts or a partner. Two species can closely coexist without harming each other, which may benefit both or only one of them, or one of them can be a parasite – in this case one benefits and the other comes to harm. All organisms have adapted to the conditions in which they live through evolution. The dependencies between them form a complex network. Because of this, we can never be sure whether “removing” one piece from this puzzle won’t disturb the system, which has been forming over a very long time “by trial and error”.


Reasons for the reduction of biodiversity. We’re witnessing a dramatic fall in biodiversity. The loss of further species reduces our own chances of survival.
The key factors for this decline include:
1) the disappearance of habitats and ecological corridors

2) the influx of invasive alien species

3) climate change

4) environmental pollution

5) overexploitation of living resources


Currently, between 5,000 and approx. 50,000 species of plants and animals disappear each year. This is a number 100 to 1000-fold greater than the natural extinction process without the influence of human civilisation. It has to be noted that extinction can happen to both large and spectacular species, such as the lynx, tiger, giraffe, which are in danger, or the black rhinoceros, which is already extinct, but also to small, inconspicuous ones, which perhaps we haven’t yet discovered and named. According to the “Living Planet Report 2016” published by the WWF, the population of vertebrates decreased by 58% between 1970 and 2012! Analyses of publications and research from the last 40 years concerning insects tell us the situation is dramatic. According to forecasts, if humans don’t refrain from environmental degradation, up to 40% of all insect species may become extinct over the next few decades. By changing the climate and transforming the natural environment, humanity changes the space other organisms need to live and reproduce, and often they’re unable to survive in new conditions.


Human activities, such as construction of roads and railways, river regulation, excessive deforestation, industrial farming and intensively fertilised large-area monocultures, have caused the once huge habitats to be divided and separated by barriers. As a result, the gene pool of the population is diminished, which can lead to its extinction.


In order to prevent biodiversity loss, active conservation measures are being taken to stop adverse changes. Some of them consist in restoring habitats to a state that enables ecosystems to function properly, supporting natural processes that have been disturbed, or rebuilding populations. Others provide connections between divided fragments of habitats by creating new or reconnecting broken ecological corridors. Maintaining such communication always needs careful consideration on three levels: local (population of the species), regional (connections between populations) and continental (the entire area where a species occurs).


Alien invasive species that manage to escape, plants from cultivation or animals kept on farms, or species that have been accidentally or intentionally introduced into the environment, are a serious threat to biodiversity. They exhibit rapid growth and a high reproduction rate. These qualities give them an edge in the fight for the habitat’s resources and, as a result, they take over niches native species occupy, eventually eliminating them and transforming the natural habitats.


A lack of awareness of the threats invasive species pose, results in bored owners of exotic animals or well-meaning nature enthusiasts releasing invasive species into the environment, such as the red-eared turtle or signal crayfish. Not only animals are a problem. Everyone should know the most dangerous alien plant species and not introduce them to our gardens. A publication of the Zaborski Landscape Park entitled: “Replace goldenrod with mallow by your fence” (co-financed by the Voivodeship Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management in Gdańsk), which can be found on the website of the Pomeranian Landscape Park Complex, lists species that are a threat to native nature and which plants they can be replaced with to benefit the natural environment.


The decline in biodiversity is also a result of organisms being over-exploited, e.g. through overfishing or hunting.


Water, soil and air pollution also affect them. The response to changes in the environment varies depending on the species. Starting with a change in growth or reproduction rate and ending with the extinction of those most sensitive. In this case measures to preserve biodiversity can also be taken.

What can YOU do to protect biodiversity:
● Limit consumption. Buy only the products you are able to use

  • Choose local products and those whose production does not negatively impact biodiversity (e.g. avoid palm oil)
  • Don’t bring souvenirs made of plants and animals at risk of extinction from holidays (you can find a list of 34 thousand species on the Washington Convention website – CITES)
  • Swap your evenly trimmed lawn for a colourful meadow
  • Grow native plant species, in particular those good for insects, birds, small mammals
  • Take care of old trees and avenues, plant new ones
  • If you feed birds, do it responsibly. Don’t give them bread!
  • Don’t introduce alien species into the environment
  • When choosing a place for your holiday or relaxation, consider whether your presence won’t harm the surroundings
  • Learn about invasive species that are a threat to nature and don’t cultivate them
  • Give up plastic and take advantage of reusable products
  • Sort waste
  • Save water and electricity
  • Collect rainwater, which you can use, for example, to water your garden
  • Share these tips with others 🙂

The Pomeranians educate

The Pomeranian family—the protagonists of the campaign led by employees of the Provincial Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management in Gdańsk—commence new activities as part of the “Feel the Climate” project. Over the next few months, the Pomeranians will participate in various festivals, picnics and events organized in the Pomeranian Voivodeship, where the hosts will encourage citizens and tourists to change their habits and follow eco‑friendly principles. They will educate us how our decisions and behaviour impact the environment. The Pomeranian family’s stand will feature a large board game on the topic of the biodiversity of the Pomeranian Voivodeship, jigsaw puzzles and rebuses to solve, a wheel of fortune, and educational card games about the basic principles of circular economy and recycling.


Educators at the Pomeranians’ stand teach us how to take better care of the environment, help us understand the causes and effects of the greenhouse effect, explain why non‑native invasive species harm local ecosystems. Display cases and cards presented at the stand help us learn about the subsequent stages of PET bottle recycling and products that can be manufactured from such waste. The Pomeranians also have a relaxation zone with comfortable deckchairs, where you can sit back and drink some water with mint from a paper cup. The water is served in glass jugs because the Pomeranians reduce their plastic use!

The Pomeranians travel the region

The Pomeranian family are the protagonists of the “Feel the Climate” campaign led by employees of the Provincial Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management in Gdańsk. They are up against quite a challenge. The Pomeranians  learn how to sensibly use shrinking water and energy resources, and how to improve the quality of air. They have understood that humans generate too much waste, and that they can recover a significant portion of raw materials by treating such waste appropriately. And that it’s beneficial to care about biodiversity. Videos, games and educational guides have been posted at and on social media. Competitions with attractive prizes are under way as well. Moreover, you can meet the Pomeranians at studio cinemas, medical and shopping centres, in buses and Fast Urban Railway (SKM) carriages.


Another component of the project is an interactive outdoor exhibition. It explains environmental phenomena in simple terms, and the Pomeranian family are our guides to the exposition, which is made up of three large solid figures; each one, in addition to information, provides interactive games and activities. Everything is intended to educate us in an interesting and unique manner. You can learn about the Adventures of the Pomeranian Family at the exhibition until the end of 2019 in various Pomeranian cities.


Are you aware that most of energy consumed at home goes for heating? We know how to save it.


  1. Are your windows and doors airtight? Of course, the best solution is to have new, well-fitted and sealed windows. But if you cannot afford to replace the old ones, make sure that heat does not escape through them. Window frames can be sealed, for example, with self-adhesive gaskets made of polyurethane or rubber foam. Ensure that the product has a proper cross-section and the window frame is perfectly dry before applying it. Otherwise the gasket will be improperly attached and it may still allow cold air to enter inside. If there is an air leak between the window frame and the windowsill or the wall, then a butyl vapour barrier sealing tape can be used.
  1. Let the heat move around! Never put furniture in front of radiators nor cover them with curtains. If curtains reach the floor, heat is blocked between the radiator and the curtain. Choose short curtains and drapes in winter, or pick them up and place on the windowsill. If possible, put furniture as far as possible from the radiator – a distance of at least one metre. It is good to have a windowsill or a shelf above the radiator – it prevents warm air from rising and cooling down.
  1. To distribute heat from radiators within a room in the most effective way, install screens behind them made from silver foil and polystyrene foam. In this way you will prevent the penetration of heat into the wall. Screens reflect the heat back and facilitate its distribution inside the room.
  1. Remember about the optimal room temperature! 210C at daytime and 130C at nighttime – you can safely turn the radiators down. Another helpful idea is to ventilate the house from time to time – shortly but intensively.
  1. And on an extremely cold day, you can cover the window with blinds and curtains, preferably those which do not cover the radiator.


The Pomorskie family needs tips on how to organise Christmas in an environment-friendly way. A mini contest has therefore been announced on their FB fan page. The key question is: What should be done to celebrate green Christmas?


The answer that will best appeal to the Pomorskie family as well as two other answers with the greatest number of likes will be rewarded. The winners will receive ecological Christmas-scented candles. The competition runs on the campaign fanpage: Join us now!