Biodiversity Conservation and Sustainable Development
In recent years, nanotechnology has been treated as one of the key priorities that constitute part of all vital spheres of human activity. Here, it becomes clear that expansion of nanotechnologies is considerably outpacing the assessment of their impact on the environment, plants, animals, and people, while currently available data on this topic are fragmentary and conflicting.
The unprecedented rates of the world’s economic expansion, con-sumption of biospheric resources, and global environmental change in the second half of the 20th century radically altered the world within a few decades, as was witnessed by presently living people.
Now is the time to change the nature management strategy drastically and switch from the present-day socioeconomic pattern of increasing the consumption of biospheric resources to a sustainable relationship with the biosphere. It is imperative that we develop as soon as possible a new ecologocentric concept for nature use based on the assumption that the living environment (ecosystems, biotic communities, species, and populations) is the key resource for maintaining stabilized conditions suitable for human living, without which it is impossible to attain sustainable economic progress, im-prove the quality of life, and ensure the security of people. To use this resource in an economically justified way, it is important that we preserve and rehabilitate the environmental functions of living nature. The living environment should be included in the economic system with its adequate value taken into account.
Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution, Russian Academy of Sciences