Conservation and climate change news

Plants have an essential role to play in mitigating the effects of climate change, because they take carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. Conversely, if forests are destroyed by burning, then carbon dioxide is added to the atmosphere. Deforestation accounts for about one fifth of the world’s carbon emissions.

However, plants are threatened by environmental changes including climate change. Conserving plants is therefore critical to any sustainable solution to environmental change.

Kew's work in this area | Adopt a seed for £25 and help Kew protect plant life


International Diploma in Plant Conservation Strategies

The International Diploma in Plant Conservation Strategies offers an overview of the range of in situ and ex situ options for conserving plant diversity, taking into account the targets and aims of international conservation conventions.

Botanic Garden Education students taking part in an arts activity

International Diploma in Botanic Garden Education

The International Diploma in Botanic Garden Education, developed jointly by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI), provides an opportunity for botanic garden educators to develop programmes within the context of international conservation and sustainability legislation and to try out a wide range of environmental education activities.

Close up of snowdrops

Working together for a sustainable snowdrop trade

15 Feb 2010

Kew is working in partnership to survey populations of snowdrops in Georgia. The project aims to survey cultivated and wild populations and make recommendations to establish long term sustainable trade.


Aerial view of Diego Garcia island in the Indian Ocean

Kew is helping to restore plant life and native habitats on remote islands in the Indian Ocean

25 Jan 2010

A Kew scientist is spending two weeks on a ship to explore the status of plant life on islands of the Chagos Archipelago and help restore native habitats. Some areas have not been visited by botanists for more than 30 years.


Flowers of Chamaegigas intrepidus

Plant story - collecting the seed of intrepid little giant

01 Jan 2010

Conservationists from Kew's Millennium Seed Bank have collected the seed of intrepid little giant, a truly remarkable plant.


msb leucochrysum albicans

Plant story - conserving grassland paper daisy in Tasmania

01 Jan 2010

The Millennium Seed Bank Partnership has conserved the endangered Australian grassland paper daisy (Leucochrysum albicans).


Acacia chapmanii seed pod

Plant story - the endemic and rare Australian plant Acacia chapmanii has been collected and saved

01 Jan 2010

The Threatened Flora Seed Centre collected seed from Acacia chapmanii in December 2000 from the Drummond Nature Reserve, when the population was considered to be at risk.


Polhillia obsoleta

Plant story - Polhillia obsoleta, an endangered shrub from South Africa

01 Jan 2010

With the common name Teesuikerkaroo bos, Polhillia obsoleta is an endangered shrub from the Western Cape Province of South Africa.


Fruit of Harpagophytum zeheri

Plant story - "Devils claw" found and collected from Botswana

01 Jan 2010

Millennium Seed Bank Partnership fieldwork in the Okavango Delta in December 2005 located five IUCN Red List Index plant species, one of these being the very useful "Devils claw" (Harpagophytum zeyheri).


Piles of illegally harvested wood

Plant story - a very useful plant, Osyris lanceolata, is at risk of extinction due to overexploitation

01 Jan 2010

The commercial demand of Osyris products has recently led to an increased rate of exploitation, to an extent that its existence in its natural habitat is seriously threatened. Thanks to the Millennium Seed Bank Partnership, this plant species is now safeguarded for our future.


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Premna serratifolia

Premna serratifolia

Malbau is a common beach plant from southeast Asia and the Pacific. The crushed leaves smell of cat's urine.

Find out more about this species

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