In the last few weeks, we’ve heard some startling news from scientists worldwide. A recent report from the IPCC told us that drastic and immediate action needs to be taken to prevent our children from facing an unlivable future and biodiversity being destroyed worldwide. This is worrying news for us all. But why is it so important to act now? If you want to know why we must act now to keep humans and the planet healthy, keep reading below:
Biodiversity is the foundation of life on earth. It gives us everything we need; from the air we breathe and the food we eat to the water we drink. As well as this, it isolates carbon and has many other benefits – all of which are important for human survival. However, research suggests that over 38,500 species are now under threat of extinction.
The ocean provides us with many resources and services we depend on, including clean air, a stable climate, recreation, transport and energy, livelihoods, and food. However, over 13 million metric tons of plastic enter the ocean each year. This can cause significant damage to the marine animals that live there.
Forests are essential for several reasons. As well as providing a home for animals and livelihood for humans, they also help to prevent soil erosion, offer watershed protection, and mitigate climate change. Unfortunately, we lose over 10 million hectares of forest each year due to climate change.
Healthy landscapes are essential for the well-being and prosperity of people. They are home to a significant proportion of biodiversity and provide ecosystem services that are vital for life, such as climate regulation. However, nearly ¾ of the Earth’s land areas are substantially degraded due to climate change. While this is something we can fix, it will take a long time to get back to where we used to be.
Climate change has affected humans in many ways. One example is the increased public health challenges we face because of the warmer climate. Over the last few years, the number of people suffering from heat-aggravated illnesses and diseases has increased significantly.
Another example of how climate change has affected humans is the decreased access to safe water and food. We no longer have as much clean water or food on earth as we used to.
What Can We Do to Stop This?
To keep the earth and humans healthy, there are several strategies we must employ. We must stop using existing fossil fuel infrastructure and look for new, more sustainable options, such as more sustainable water treatment systems. We must increase our renewable energy sources like wind and solar, as well as carbon capture and storage technologies. And we must protect the wildlife that lives in our ecosystem. As well as this, we must make small changes to our daily lives, such as cutting down on the power we use.
The Earth is nearing a tipping point. Scientists argue that without several immediate interventions by countries worldwide, we will be on the path of no return. It will no longer be able to compensate and overcome generations’ worth of damage. So, it is imperative that we all act now.