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What is Biodiversity?

Published Jul 8, 2010

Biological diversity is the variety of life and its processes — it includes the variety of living organisms, the genetic differences among them, and the communities and ecosystems in which they occur.  It includes genetic variation within species, the variety of species in an area, and the variety of habitat types within a landscape. Because biodiversity has such an all-encompassing definition, and a strong emotional pull,  it is often applied to broad topics, even though it mainly refers to the variety of living organisms in an area.