Make peace with nature now -Inger Andersen
This year can go down as the year when we set the planet on a path towards healing
As COVID-19 upends our lives, a more persistent crisis demands urgent action on a global scale. Three environmental crises — climate change; nature loss; and the pollution of air, soil and water — add up to a planetary emergency that will cause far more pain than COVID-19 in the long-term.
For years, scientists have detailed how humanity is degrading nature. Yet the actions governments, financial institutions, businesses and individuals are taking fall short of what is needed to protect current and future generations from a hothouse Earth, beset by mass species extinctions and poisonous air and water.
In 2020, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) announced that, despite a dip in greenhouse gas emissions caused by the pandemic, the world is still headed for global warming of more than 3°C this century. This month, the Dasgupta Review reminded us of what UNEP has long warned: the per capita stock of natural capital (the resources and services nature provides to humanity) has fallen by 40% in just over two decades. We already know that a staggering nine out of 10 people worldwide breathe polluted air.
Towards a sustainable future
Finding answers to such daunting problems is complex. But experts have developed solutions. To guide decision-makers towards the action required, the UN has released the Making Peace with Nature report. The report pulls together all the evidence of environmental decline from major global scientific assessments, with the most advanced ideas on how to reverse it. The result is a blueprint for a sustainable future that can secure human well-being on a healthy planet.
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The Hindu, 19 February, 2021, https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/op-ed/make-peace-with-nature-now/article33874206.ece?homepage=true