The suicide war against nature continues unabated

The planet loses 4.7 million hectares of forest every year, an area larger than Denmark, according to a new UN report. Credit: UNDP
  • by Baher Kamal (Madrid
  • Inter Press Service

Oceans fill with plastic and become more acidic. Extreme heat, wildfires and floods, as well as a record-breaking Atlantic hurricane season, have affected millions of people. Even today, we are still faced with COVID-19, a global health pandemic related to the health of our ecosystem.

Climate change, man-made changes in nature and crimes that disrupt biodiversity, such as deforestation, land use change, intensified agriculture and livestock or the growing illegal trade in wildlife, can accelerate the rate at which the planet is being destroyed.

The message is clear. And it’s now being relaunched to mark International Mother Earth’s Day, April 22, 2022, which coincides with the UN Decade for Ecosystem Restoration.

“Ecosystems support all life on Earth. The healthier our ecosystems, the healthier the planet – and its people. Restoring our damaged ecosystems will help end poverty, fight climate change and prevent mass extinctions…”

Making peace with nature

The United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) report “Making Peace with Nature: A Scientific Blueprint to Address Climate, Biodiversity and Pollution Emergencies” translates the current state of scientific knowledge into crisp, clear and digestible, fact-based messages that the world can identify with and follow up on.

“Humanity is at war against nature. This is pointless and suicidal. The consequences of our recklessness are already evident in human suffering, skyrocketing economic losses and the accelerating erosion of life on Earth,” said António Guterres, the United Nations Secretary-General, in his foreword to the report.

important facts

Many startling facts have been repeated on the occasion of Mother Earth Day. Here are just a few:

  • None of the agreed global goals to protect life on Earth and stop the degradation of land and oceans has been fully achieved.
  • Three quarters of the country and two thirds of the oceans are now influenced by humans. One million of the world’s estimated 8 million species of plants and animals are in danger of extinction, and many of the ecosystem services essential to human well-being are eroding.
  • It is estimated that about one million animal and plant species are now threatened with extinction.
  • The planet loses 4.7 million hectares of forest every year, an area larger than Denmark.
  • A healthy ecosystem helps protect humans against these diseases. Biological diversity makes it difficult for pathogens to spread quickly.
  • Environmental changes hinder progress in ending poverty and hunger, reducing inequalities and promoting sustainable economic growth, jobs for all and peaceful and inclusive societies.
  • The well-being of today’s youth and of future generations depends on an urgent and clear break from the current trends of environmental degradation.
  • The next decade is crucial. Society must reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 45 percent by 2030 compared to 2010 levels and achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 to reach the 1.5°C target of the Paris Agreement, while simultaneously protecting biodiversity. preserved and restored and pollution and waste are minimized.
  • Over the past 50 years, the global economy has grown nearly fivefold, largely due to a tripling of natural resource and energy extraction fueling growth in production and consumption.
  • The world’s population has increased by a factor of two to 7.8 billion people, and although prosperity has also doubled on average, about 1.3 billion people remain poor and about 700 million are hungry.
  • The increasingly unequal and resource-intensive development model is driving environmental degradation from climate change, loss of biodiversity and other forms of pollution and resource degradation.

Overproduction, overconsumption

Two more scientifically troubling findings are the fact that 570 million tons of food are wasted at the household level every year, according to the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) 2021 Food Waste Index Report.

And that while more than 800 million people are still hungry, and global food waste is responsible for 8-10 percent of greenhouse gas emissions. Food waste is accelerating the triple planetary crisis of climate change, loss of wildlife and biodiversity, and pollution and waste.

There is a lot of information warning against the ongoing devastating human war against Mother Nature.

Would you like to know more about what climate change is exactly and what is stated in the Paris Agreement? Also about what actions are being taken and who is carrying them out? What are the latest scientific reports on this topic? Are we in time to save Mother Earth? Find out here.

It is now or never

In the worthwhile report Climate Change 2022: Mitigation of Climate Change, released April 4, 2022, the Working Group III to the Sixth Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), world scientists warn that “without immediate and deep emissions reductions in all sectors, limiting global warming to 1.5°C is unfeasible.”

© Inter Press Service (2022) — All rights reservedOriginal source: Inter Press Service

Leave a Comment