2020: a truly unimaginable year for biodiversity

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The Guardian’s biodiversity editor looks back on a year that put the state of the planet on the agenda in ways no one could have foreseen

The year 2020 was always destined to be a crucial one for biodiversity, with the Cop15 conference in Kunming, China scheduled for October, at which the international community was expected to agree a Paris-style agreement for nature. But the arrival of the coronavirus pandemic across the world forced biodiversity on to the agenda in a way previously unseen.

Despite the postponement of Cop15, there was a flurry of activity among the world’s leading figures on the environment as it became clear that the state of our planet has never been more urgent. In March, John Vidal was among the first to report on the link between our destruction of nature and Covid-19 – and the warnings continued.

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