Restoring our ecosystems
Today mark’s the UN’s annual World Environment Day:
World Environment Day is focusing on ecosystem restoration and its theme is “Reimagine. Recreate.Restore.”
Ecosystem restoration means preventing, halting and reversing this damage – to go from exploiting nature to healing it. This World Environment Day will kick off the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030), a global mission to revive billions of hectares, from forests to farmlands, from the top of mountains to the depth of the sea.
Only with healthy ecosystems can we enhance people’s livelihoods, counteract climate change and stop the collapse of biodiversity.
World Environment Day 2021 will see the launch of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration: A global rallying cry for everyone – from governments to corporations and citizens – to do their part in healing our ailing planet.
While a decade sounds like a long time, it is these next 10 years that scientists tell us matter most in preventing catastrophic climate change and bending the curve on biodiversity loss.
With a special website devoted to the day’s themes:
Meanwhile in the UK, the government has pledged extra funding:
Threatened species such as whales, marine turtles and sharks will be better protected thanks to a boost of over £8 million for projects in the UK Overseas Territories, the government has announced today (Saturday 5 June) under plans to tackle the global biodiversity crisis.
And the government has also announced today that it will be demanding more of its business partners:
Businesses will have to commit to the UK’s 2050 net-zero target before they can bid for major government contracts, under new rules announced on World Environment Day. Firms will also have to publish “credible” carbon reduction plans setting out their existing greenhouse gas emissions such as fuel usage, power consumption and staff travel. The Cabinet Office said the measures would be put in place by September for contracts worth more than £5m, making the UK government the first in the world to require such commitments.
Today’s Independent is running several pieces on the issues:
Here’s one of a series of interviews:
Michael E Mann, distinguished professor of atmospheric science at Pennsylvania State University and author of ‘The New Climate War’, US:
It is a confluence of seemingly unconnected but in fact synergistic developments that makes me cautiously optimistic about our prospects for averting catastrophic climate change: an end to the age of denial, as climate impacts become obvious to the person on the street and impossible to doubt; a youth climate movement that has galvanised public attention and re-centred the conversation on our obligations to the least culpable and most vulnerable; a pandemic that has led us to ask long-overdue questions about the sustainability of our current path; and a favourable shift in political winds, together with renewed American leadership, which has raised the stakes and led fence-sitting nations to step up to the plate in the home stretch leading up to the Cop26 climate meeting in Glasgow later this year.
That long-awaited climate action “tipping point” might finally have arrived.