Science

Confront their failure to meet the 2020 biodiversity targets, and world leaders’ pledges of action and funding

Climate change and lack of concern for the environment can have dire consequences for the healthy ecosystems and rich biodiversity of Saint Lucia. On January 10, France, the United Nations and the World Bank hosted a virtual biodiversity summit at which world leaders pledged action and funding to protect the planet. Credit: Desmond Brown / IBS
  • By Alison Kentish (United nations)
  • Inter Press service
  • Amid calls from the United Nations Secretary-General to stop dealing with Earth “as if we had a spare piece”, French President Emmanuel Macron led world leaders in commitments to protect ecosystems at the One Planet Summit.

A decade has passed and the facts are undeniable. None of the goals were met, such as to end species extinction or limit pollution. “We have to face this failure and learn its lessons,” Macron said.

The French leader said the world is witnessing the effects of overexploitation of natural resources, including increased poverty, inequality, public health crises and security concerns. He urged leaders to act decisively, stating that they have the means to address the crisis in the natural world.

“Opportunities are emerging in nature to create 191 million jobs by 2030. If forests, oceans and ecosystems remain intact, they can become effective carbon pools to help us achieve climate goals. Nature provides solutions for sustainable agriculture and economic services, and helps us preserve our heritage and cultures. “.

The 2019 Global Assessment of Biodiversity and Ecosystem ServicesAnd, the first of its kind in a decade, he mentioned that the rate of global change in nature in the past half-century was unprecedented in history. He warned that the harsh demand on Earth’s resources has led to the exposure of one million plant and animal species to extinction within decades, with implications for public health.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres told the summit that 2021 must be the year of “reconciling humanity and nature”, and that the world cannot “return to the old normal.”

“So far we are destroying our planet. It has been exploited as if we had one spare. Our current use of our resources requires nearly two planets, but we only have one. If we can compare Earth’s history to a calendar year, we would have used a third of its natural resources in the last 0.2.” Seconds. “

With more than 1.8 million people killed and the economy kneeling due to COVID-19, the United Nations Secretary-General said that recovering from the pandemic is the world’s opportunity to change course.

“With smart policies and the right investments, we can chart the right course, revive economies, build resilience and save biodiversity. Innovations in energy and transportation can drive sustainable recovery and economic and social transformation,” Guterres said.

The Secretary-General cited the Great African Green Wall as a particularly promising nature-based solution to biodiversity loss. The ambitious project seeks to plant a 5,000-mile “wall” of trees to combat land degradation and protect livelihoods in the Sahel, Lake Chad and Horn of Africa regions. The summit raised $ 14.3 billion for the project – beating its target by just over $ 4 billion. The World Bank Group pledged $ 5 billion to the initiative.

“Climate change and loss of biodiversity are what define the issues of our time,” World Bank President David Malpass told the summit, adding that with COVID-19 emphasizing the link between human and earth health, the foundation will work with the German government on research toward a “one health” approach to prevention. It is an emerging infectious disease.

“It is very clear: we cannot succeed in helping countries reduce poverty and inequality without rising to the challenges of climate change and biodiversity loss.”

The heir to the British throne, the Prince of Wales, called for intensified work on biodiversity conservation, noting that consensus, intentions and goals are good “first steps”, but practical efforts have been delayed. The king unveiled Terra Carta, the Earth Charter with 100 recommendations to restore nature, humans and the planet. It hopes to raise $ 10 billion for environmental projects and challenges the big companies to commit to an “ambitious and sustainable future.”

“I am making an urgent appeal to leaders, from all sectors and from all over the world, to join us in this endeavor and lend their support to the Terra Carta – to achieve harmony with nature, people and the planet. The next decade,” he said.

The meeting also paved the way for a highly ambitious “Alliance for Nature and People”, a group of 50 countries committed to preserving 30 percent of the world’s land and oceans by 2030. The alliance, chaired by France, Costa Rica and the United States, the Kingdom hopes to reduce species loss and protect Ecological systems.

The theme of this year’s summit is “Let’s work together for nature,” which is the start of an important year of work on the nature crisis. The United Nations Biodiversity Summit is scheduled to be held in Kunming, China in May and is expected to produce a post-2020 global framework on biodiversity.

26The tenth The United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 26) is scheduled to take place in Glasgow, Scotland in November.

© Inter Press Service (2021) – All rights reservedOriginal source: Inter Press Service

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