Why does protecting half the earth save biodiversity?

Because large areas harbor many more ecosystems and species composing them at a sustainable level.

The mission of the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation is to reimagine the way we care for our planet.

The Half-Earth Project inspires informed collective action to save the biosphere.

The Half-Earth proposal offers [a solution] commensurate with the magnitude of the problem: …only by setting aside half the planet in reserve, or more, can we save the living part of the environment and achieve the stabilization required for our own survival.

– E.O. Wilson (1929-2021)


Our Shared Future – a conversation in celebration of Half-Earth Day 2022

October 13, Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, Baird Auditorium

The Smithsonian Institution, and E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation invite you to join us for Our Shared Future – a conversation in celebration of Half-Earth Day 2022.

This live event at Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, Baird Auditorium, in Washington, D.C. on October 13, features Ani Dasgupta, President & CEO, WRI, Queen Quet, Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation, Ellen Stofan, Under Secretary for Science and Research at the Smithsonian, Paula J. Ehrlich, President & CEO, E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation, Cristián Samper, Managing Director and Leader of Climate Solutions, Bezos Earth Fund, Lucas St. Clair, President, Elliotsville Foundation, Sean B. Carroll, Head of Studio, HHMI Tangled Bank Studios, Elizabeth Gray, CEO, Audubon, with Jeff Corwin, wildlife biologist and TV host, and more. The day will feature additional speakers, keynotes and plenary discussions as we address area-based conservation approaches to the biodiversity extinction crisis. Open to the public with registration (coming soon).

Learn More

Protecting Nature’s Threatened Biodiversity – 

A MAHB Dialogue with Paula J. Ehrlich


The President & CEO of the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation and co-founder of the Half-Earth Project, Paula J. Ehrlich, recently sat down with the Millennium Alliance for Humanity and the Biosphere program at Stanford University to discuss the biodiversity crisis and the ambition of the Half-Earth Project to solve it.

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E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation Thanks US House for Bill to Recover and Protect Species

Legislation would create an annual fund of more than $1.3 billion

> Provide Tribes critical funding for wildlife conservation
> Protect threatened and endangered species
> Make wildlife conservation more effective and cost-efficient
> Address climate change by building more resilient ecosystems
> Boost the outdoor economy

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Watch – Shemá: Biodiversity, Franciscans, and the Season of Creation:”For a Present that has a Future”

Rosa María Ruiz
Brother Erlison Campos
Father Jacek Orzechowski
featuring Paula J. Ehrlich

Moderated by Nora Pfieffer, Director of Franciscan Justice Circles at Franciscan Action.  

The Half-Earth Project joined the discussion as part of “The Season of Creation” an annual ecumenical Christian celebration to “listen and respond together to the cry of Creation: the ecumenical family around the world unites to pray and protect our common home” led by the Franciscan Order.

View the discussion and learn more about our ecumenical engagement.

The Science of the Half-Earth Project

The innovative science and research developed and in-part, funded by the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation is having a significant impact on our goal to preserve global biodiversity. High-quality science is critical, for example, to informing global initiatives like protecting 30% of land and seas by 2030 (30×30) on the way to Half-Earth, or the America The Beautiful Plan to protect biodiversity and address climate change in the US.

Explore the science of the Half-Earth Project.

Explore the Half-Earth Project Map.

Rep. Beyer introduces Half-Earth Resolution

On the birthday of the late E.O. Wilson (1929 – 2021), legislation introduced by Representative Don Beyer (D-VA) in the US House of Congress honored E.O. Wilson’s dream of setting aside half the Earth’s land and seas for the conservation of species and the principles of Half-Earth.

Whereas the late E.O. Wilson has estimated that protecting half of the Earth’s land and seas would be sufficient to preserve 85 percent of the planet’s species, and with it, global biodiversity;

Learn more.

Revisit Half-Earth Day 2021!

Last October, E.O. Wilson (1929–2021) and Sir David Attenborough met in a once-in-a-lifetime discussion on Half-Earth Day 2021, moderated by Sir Tim Smit at the Royal Geographical Society in London. The panel was supported by the James M. and Catherine D. Stone Distinguished Lectureship in Biodiversity, Mishcon de Reya, Eden Project, and Half-Earth Day 2021 presenting sponsor, CBRE. Throughout the day presenters and panelists included distinguished scientists, conservationists, educators, and business leaders, discussing the path to Half-Earth, and saving global biodiversity, including Johan Rockstöm, Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, and Rezan Al Mubarak.

Every Half-Earth Day 2021 panel, session and plenary are available to view on the Half-Earth Day 2021 Showcase.

Statement on Biden-Harris Administration Executive Order on Climate Crisis

“We applaud the Biden-Harris Administration’s pledge to put America on the path to ‘conserve 30 percent of its ocean of our lands and oceans by 2030.’ Conservation areas are key to safeguarding species and to ensure future generations can benefit from biodiversity’s many contributions to functioning ecosystems and human well-being. The Half-Earth Project® recognizes the need for a much expanded and carefully selected network of lands, waters, and ocean prioritized for conservation to achieve this goal.”

Read full statement

Dr. Paula J. Ehrlich, DVM, PhD, President & CEO, E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation, Half-Earth Project® Lead

On Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion and the Half-Earth Project

We commit to prioritizing listening and taking clear steps externally and internally to combat racism and oppression of all types. We commit to working toward justice, equity, diversity and inclusion in our leadership, our programs, our strategic planning, our operations, our communications and our fundraising. We commit to creating a culture at the foundation that educates staff and stakeholders on the issues of justice, equity, diversity and inclusion and holds opportunity for traditionally excluded groups to join in processes, activities and decision-making. We welcome and encourage feedback along the way.

We commit to understanding that this body of work IS our work if we are to achieve the goal of Half-Earth and benefit all people and species.

Honoring Indigenous Communities

“The Half-Earth Project honors the wisdom of the traditional owners of the lands and waters we aim to protect and their ancient ways of seeing and experiencing nature. In the spirit of the oral tradition of the Blackfoot, we aim to honor ‘the flash of the firefly in the night, the breath of the buffalo in the wintertime, and the little shadow that runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.’ We aim to restore and protect life. We thank our Indigenous communities for their historic stewardship of life, their critical role in reaffirming and repairing our relationship with it and their present and future partnership.” – Paula Ehrlich, President & CEO of the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation and Lead of the Half-Earth Project

View full statement at left. Seek out the Indigenous history of the place where you live at https://native-land.ca/.