We are calling for policymakers worldwide to take in the scientific knowledge synthesized in the 10 Must Knows from Biodiversity Science (10MustKnows) to inform much needed policies. At the UN Biodiversity Conference in Montréal in December, your decisive action is needed to halt the man-made extinction of species and to strengthen biodiversity. The 10MustDos are intended to support you in taking such action by proposing solutions that can be implemented with immediate effect.

Find corresponding literature references under "Read more".

MustDo 6: Did you know that agriculture is currently subsidised to the tune of 540 billion US dollars globally [1]?

We demand that existing subsidy instruments are used specifically for the transformation of agriculture towards more biodiversity-friendly production. The nature-based use of biodiversity and the variety of ecosystem services for agricultural production reduce the use of mineral fertilisers, chemical pesticides and greenhouse gas emissions and further stabilise yields [2]. We also call for the expansion of the spectrum of cultivated species [3,4,5].


[1] FAO, UNDP and UNEP. 2021. A multi-billion-dollar opportunity – Repurposing agricultural support to transform food systems. Rome, FAO. doi.org/10.4060/cb6562en

[2] Duru et al. 2015. How to implement biodiversity-based agriculture to enhance ecosystem services: a review. Agron. Sustain. Dev. 35:1259-1281. Doi:10.1007/s13593-015-0306-1

[3] Nicholson et al. (2021). Global relationships between crop diversity and nutritional stability. Nat Commun. doi:10.1038/s41467-021-25615-2

[4] Chen et al. (2021). Diversity increases yield but reduces harvest index in crop mixtures. Nat. Plants. doi:10.1038/s41477-021-00948-4

[5] Turner et al. (2020). Effects of genomic and functional diversity on stand-level productivity and performance of non-native Arabidopsis. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences. doi:10.1098/rspb.2020.2041