ASEZ hosted the 3rd Biodiversity Seminar at a main hall of the Seoul National University College of Education under the theme, “Carbon Neutrality and Biodiversity,” on July 24, 2023. The seminar attended by about 200 university students aims to raise students’ awareness of biodiversity and the importance of conserving sustainable environment. This is an annual event of ASEZ at Seoul National University, where speakers in the field of biodiversity participate in each year. This year, Professor Choi Jae-cheon of the EcoScience Department at Ewha Womans University gave a lecture.

The seminar began with a video about ASEZ’s Greenship Project. This project aims to take action for nature with global citizens who have the rights and duties to change the world.

Additionally, ASEZ introduced the ABC Movement through a video. ABC stands for “ASEZ Blue Carbon,” which is to promote and protect blue carbon. ASEZ carried out cleanups to protect blue carbon ecosystems around the world through the ABC Movement, by promoting the importance of blue carbon which refers to carbon that the marine ecosystems preserve.

After watching the video, the ASEZ Choir performed a pre-ceremonial performance in commemoration of the ASEZ’s UNCCD Executive Secretary Award. They sang the songs titled “Into the Forest” and “Right Now Right Here” to convey the importance of forest and of taking action for the environment.

Next, Professor Choi Jae-cheon gave a lecture on “Ecological Turn: Climate and Biodiversity Crisis.” Professor Choi pointed out that the coronavirus, which posed a threat to the international community, was linked to the migration of bats due to global warming. He warned, “As long as climate change continues, pandemics can occur at any time.” He also mentioned the warning from the IPCC report that without a decline in greenhouse gas emissions by 2025, it would be impossible to prevent climate disasters. He urged everyone to have interest in environmental issues and address them together.

Furthermore, he also pointed out mass production-oriented agriculture and livestock farming in modern society, which fail to respect biodiversity. He said, “Focusing solely on productivity has led us to lose genetic diversity,” explaining that the value of nature lies not just in purity but in diversity. He then emphasized how valuable it is to achieve carbon neutrality, by explaining that protecting nature plays the same role as an ecological vaccine, and that it is important to strive for a sustainable environment.

The 3rd ASEZ Biodiversity Seminar informed the international community about the value of carbon neutrality that the international community is trying to achieve, and the importance of biodiversity of terrestrial and marine ecosystems. The university students who participated in the seminar recognized the connection between carbon neutrality and biodiversity, and realized that biodiversity is essential to cope with climate disasters that are increasing in the global village. Attention is paid to what activities university students, the future leaders, will perform to preserve biodiversity.