The world is not doing enough. A blunt assessment by scientists regarding efforts the world over in addressing serious environmental challenges.
Scientists fear dire consequences on people’s health if action is not taken, a most comprehensive and rigorous assessment on the state of the environment completed by the UN reveals.
Professor Paul Ekins is co-author of the Global Environment Outlook 6 spoke on the sidelines of 4th United nations Environment Assembly in Nairobi, Kenya.
Pathways that achieve these targets but they require transformative changes with a broad portfolio of measures based on technology improvements, lifestyle changes and localized solution:
‘‘On current trends this is not the future we want, this is the future that governments declared that they wanted with Agenda 2030 in 2015. It does not matter which of the environmental compartments you look at. We can see that we are not on track to meet the environment related targets of the SDG’s and related multilateral environmental agreements in respect of climate change, the food system, air pollution, water scarcity, ocean pollution or even child mortality’‘, he said.
Report say, if counties invest 2% of their GDP on green investment it would deliver long-term growth as high as presently projected with fewer impacts from climate change, water scarcity and loss of ecosystems.
Adopting less-meat intensive diets and reducing food waste in both developed and developing countries, would reduce the need to increase food production by 50% to feed about 9-10 billion people on the planet by 2050.
Policy interventions that address entire systems like waste, food and energy instead of individual issues, such as water pollution, can be much more effective.
Despite the bleak environment assessment, the authors are hopeful.
‘‘But on the other side of the coin is the pathways towards a different future do exist. Pathways that achieve these targets but they require transformative changes with a broad portfolio of measures based on technology improvements, lifestyle changes and localized solution. A healthy planet is the foundation for supporting all life on earth, that is all of us, human beings as well as other species’‘, he added.
The 2019 global environment report, was produced by 250 scientists and experts from more than 70 countries.