Kent research suggests that recent high levels of media coverage for climate change may have deflected attention and funding from biodiversity loss.
In a paper published by the journal Bioscience, Kent conservationists also recommend that, to prevent biodiversity from becoming a declining priority, conservationists need to leverage the importance of climate change to obtain more funds and draw attention to other research areas such as biodiversity conservation.
Among their findings the team discovered that:
- Press attention devoted to biodiversity has remained stable since 1990, but the proportion of climate change reports rose before 2007 and has stayed substantially higher than biodiversity since 2005
- In scientific journals, papers on biodiversity loss and conservation have increased at a steady pace, but publication of papers on climate change accelerated markedly around 2006 and overtook them
- Funding by the World Bank shows no evident change over the past 20 years, with climate change projects funded at a much greater rate than biodiversity projects. The US National Science Foundation‘s investments directed toward climate change research have increased substantially since 1987, but biodiversity expenditures have increased much less and have held steady since 2004.