Half-Earth Day 2021

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 on October 22nd. 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.

Explore the sessions of Half-Earth Day 2021, from Science and Conservation, Education, and Business and Community tracks, to plenaries like How to Save the Natural World, a conversation with E.O. Wilson and Sir David Attenborough, moderated by Sir Tim Smit. The day’s presenters and panelists included distinguished scientists, conservationists, educators, and business leaders, including Hindou Oumarou Ibrahim, Razan Al Mubarak, and Johan Rockström, discussing the path to Half-Earth and saving global biodiversity.


Watch: Opening Session: Courageous Optimism

As we come together in common cause on Half-Earth Day, this session opens the day with a discussion about the courageous optimism it sometimes takes to forge a more enduring ethic to care for our planet.


Watch: Plenary Session: Area-based Conservation and Earth System with Johan Rockström

This session provides an Earth system and Anthropocene perspective on why humanity needs to navigate world development within a Half-Earth perspective.


Watch: Plenary Session: How to Save the Natural World

The evening plenary featured an introduction by Walter Jetz and Razan Al Mubarak, a keynote by E.O. Wilson, and a conversation with Sir David Attenborough and E.O. Wilson, moderated by Sir Tim Smit. How to Save the Natural World is supported by the James M. and Catherine D. Stone Distinguished Lectureship in Biodiversity.


Science and Conservation Sessions

Watch: Evidence and Scientific Foundations

Biodiversity conservation critically depends on information about the existence and global distribution of species. This panel of distinguished scientists, moderated by Walter Jetz, addressed taxonomic and biogeographic foundations of conservation and highlighted new data and science advances.


Watch: Perspectives and Approaches

Area-based conservation in a changing world presents unique and evolving challenges and opportunities. This session, featuring leading conservationists and scientists, moderated by Walter Jetz, discussed approaches to measuring and identifying biodiversity change and priority areas for conservation.


Watch: Solutions for Biodiversity and People

Effective biodiversity conservation relies on support from local communities and the engagement of relevant stakeholders across scales. This session discussed how scientific evidence can be used in practice to develop conservation solutions that successfully involve people.


Education and Technology Sessions

Watch: A Biodiverse Education: Outdoors, in School, and in the Community

In this session, educators and organizations focus on what’s working and share what’s promising to engage youth and diverse people in nature. The session, moderated by Dennis Liu, featured a variety of short talks from finding awe and wonder, to shaking up the standard school model, to getting outside to engage with nature in city, suburb, and country.


Watch: Half-Earth Project Map Update

This session explored how, with 3D mapping technology and high-resolution species data, people can connect local places with the global goal of Half-Earth. Speakers from Map of Life, Esri, and Vizzuality provide an update to the Half-Earth Project Map, moderated by Craig Mills.


Business and Community Sessions

Watch: Companies and Investors for a Half-Earth Future

Hosted and moderated by Keith Tuffley and Anita McBain of Citi, this panel featured distinguished business leaders sharing how companies and investors can come together to support the goal of Half-Earth.


Watch: Where do we come from? Who are we? Where are we going?

This panel of influential conservationists, thinkers, and designers, moderated by Jonathan F.P. Rose of the Garrison Institute, addressed these questions and more toward understanding the cultural, psychosocial, ethical, and spiritual developments necessary for a more balanced future for our planet and the life it supports.


Watch: Dream to Reality

Moderated by Delphine Mallert King, this dynamic session brought together members of The Long Run, who are protecting ecosystems, and scientists to reflect on the challenges of conservation and turning dreams into reality, including the milestones, stumbling blocks, and role and limits of science during the journey.




The presenting sponsor of Half-Earth Day, CBRE, shares their proactive approach to recognizing the responsibility and opportunity to influence the way buildings are built, sourced, managed, occupied, and sold.


Watch Dr. Elizabeth Gray, interim CEO of the National Audubon Society, share her inspiration and what birds can tell us about a changing climate and world.

Rae Wynn-Grant

Watch Rae Wynn-Grant share her journey as a large carnivore ecologist.

Oliver Nsengimana

Watch Oliver Nsengimana share his motivation to protect the Gray-crowned crane of Rwanda.

A Message from E.O. Wilson

Watch the story of E.O. Wilson’s message for the 2019 Great Walden BioBlitz, courtesy of the Redford Center.


Watch Dr. Rae Wynn-Grant, David Gadsden, and Ryan Perkl explore the inspiration behind 30×30 and community conservation, introduced by Dawn Wright, Chief Scientist at Esri.

Gorongosa National Park

Scientists, technicians, and several Half-Earth Scholars at the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Laboratory in Gorongosa National Park share their taxonomic contributions to better protect species in Mozambique.

My Garden of a Thousand Bees

Watch an excerpt from My Garden of a Thousand Bees by filmmaker Martin Dohrn.

Martin Dohrn on Bees

Watch Martin Dohrn’s conversation about filming bees in the backyard with Dennis Liu of the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation, courtesy of HHMI Tangled Bank Pictures, PBS/Nature, and Passion Pictures.


Thank you to our presenting sponsor CBRE, Mishcon de Reya, the James M. and Catherine D. Stone Distinguished Lecture in Biodiversity, the National Audubon Society, the National Geographic Society, the Garrison Institute, and our many sponsors and partners, including the Eden Project.

You may also be interested in...

Compare ×
Compare National Report Cards Continue Reviewing


[pmpro_signup submit_button="Register" level="1" login="1" redirect="referrer"]