Biodiversity: An Essential Service

October 19, 2020

Nature makes human development possible but our relentless demand for the earth’s resources is accelerating extinction rates and devastating the world’s ecosystems.

Joyce Masuya, Acting Executive Director, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)

Ecosperity Conversations: Special Edition

Biodiversity: An Essential Service

A report by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) in 2019 found that biodiversity and the health of our natural ecosystems are declining faster than at any time in human history. But why does this matter?

Nature provides vital contributions to people: the air, food and water which we need to survive, climate regulation, carbon sequestration and many more. As urbanisation increases, so too does the threat of encroachment on our biodiversity. The COVID-19 pandemic also serves as a timely reminder of our dysfunctional relationship with nature and wildlife today. 

Join our live webinar on 19 October 2020 (Monday), at 5:30pm (GMT+8) to discuss how biodiversity as an "essential service" may be better appreciated. Hear first-hand from Dr Daniel Friess, Associate Professor at the Department of Geography, National University of Singapore, Dr Sonja Luz, Director of Conservation, Research & Veterinary Services at Wildlife Reserves Singapore and Dr Andie Ang, President of the Jane Goodall Institute (Singapore), on:

  • How a healthy natural environment has strengthened the economic performance and liveability of Singapore;
  • How quantifying the economic and societal values of biodiversity can help incorporate nature into urban planning; and
  • Actionable steps that everyone can take to help conserve nature.

Registration is free. For more information on this special edition of Ecosperity Conversations, please contact us at ecosperity.convo@temasek.com.sg

Programme

17:30 – 18:00
Biodiversity: An Essential Service
30 mins
Speakers
Speakers

Dr Daniel Friess

Associate Professor, Department of Geography, National University of Singapore

Dr Sonja Luz

Director, Conservation, Research & Veterinary Services, Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Dr Andie Ang

President, Jane Goodall Institute (Singapore)

18:00 – 19:00
Online Q&A with Audience
60 mins
Speakers and Moderator
Speakers

Dr Daniel Friess

Associate Professor, Department of Geography, National University of Singapore

Dr Sonja Luz

Director, Conservation, Research & Veterinary Services, Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Dr Andie Ang

President, Jane Goodall Institute (Singapore)

Moderator

Cassandra Ng

Associate Manager, Temasek Foundation

About the speakers

Dr Daniel Friess
Associate Professor, Department of Geography,
National University of Singapore

Dan and the NUS Mangrove Lab research mangrove forests in Singapore and Southeast Asia, particularly the benefits and ecosystem services they provide to people, the threats they face, and how to use ecosystem services to conserve and restore them.

Dan is also a Lead Principal Investigator for the Natural Capital Singapore project, conducting the nation's first national-scale ecosystem services assessment. For more information, see www.themangrovelab.com.

 

Dr Sonja Luz
Director, Conservation, Research & Veterinary Services
Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Dr Sonja Luz is currently the Director for Conservation, Research & Veterinary Services at Wildlife Reserves Singapore (WRS). WRS is the operator of Jurong Bird Park, Night Safari, River Safari and Singapore Zoo.

Her work focuses on wildlife health and conservation issues of the ASEAN region, complementing her personal interest and expertise which resides in Conservation of Southeast Asian species and habitats, Zoo- and Wildlife medicine; Animal welfare; Strategic conservation planning and conservation capacity building.

Dr Luz is a governing council member of the IUCN Asian Species Action Partnership and a Co-convener of the Conservation Planning Specialist Group SEA Resource Center, both hosted by WRS.

She is also a member of several IUCN Species Survival Specialist Groups (i.e. Pangolin, Python & Boa, and Translocation Specialist Groups) and the Chair of the SEAZA Conservation Committee and Singapore Pangolin Working Group.

 

Dr Andie Ang
President, Jane Goodall Institute (Singapore)


Andie pursued her M.Sc. at the National University of Singapore studying the ecology of critically endangered Raffles’ banded langurs, before completing her Ph.D. at the University of Colorado Boulder working on the conservation of leaf monkeys in Vietnam. She is currently a research scientist with Wildlife Reserves Singapore Conservation Fund and the chairperson of the Raffles’ Banded Langur Working Group. She is also a scientist for Red-List Assessments for Asian primates in the IUCN SSC Primate Specialist Group. Andie has served as the President of the Jane Goodall Institute (Singapore) since 2018, overseeing outreach and capacity-building programmes which aim at promoting greater awareness and protection of nature and wildlife.

Andie has over 10 years of field experience studying wild primates in Southeast Asia and continues to work closely with various government and non-government agencies in Singapore and the region, particularly Malaysia, Indonesia and Vietnam for the long-term research and conservation of endangered species. Andie is the founder of Primate Watching online resource which aims to share information on where to see each and every species of primates in the world.

For her research and conservation work, Andie received support from a number of sources including the Wildlife Reserves Singapore Conservation Fund, National Geographic Grant, Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund, and Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation (OCBC) Grant for the Environment. She has also received recognition for her achievements from the American Society of Primatologists (2019 – Conservationist Award), Singapore Women’s Weekly (2019 - The Great Women of Our Time Award for Science and Technology), Singapore Tatler (2018 – Generation T Honouree), and Prestige (2018 – 40 under 40).