By Alistair Jones
With countries struggling to improve their standards to comply with the Paris Climate Agreement, scientists have brewed up a new deal. The Global Deal for Nature (GDN) is a “time-bound, science-driven plan to save the diversity and abundance of life on Earth” (Dinerstein, 2019). This deal proposes that 30% of the Earth be formally protected as well as 20% to be designated as climate stabilization areas. This percentage includes land and marine ecosystems. Storing carbon in natural ecosystems can curb carbon emissions and remove gases from the atmosphere.
In our situation, “biodiversity loss and climate change must be addressed as one interconnected problem with linked solutions” (Asner, 2019). If the Amazon rainforest has more than 15% forest loss, it will no longer be able to self-regenerate rain and weather patterns. We are also teetering on the 2 degrees Celsius warming mark. The difference between 1.5 and 2 degrees is a lot and has a myriad of repercussions. We have already experienced a 1-degree increase and are on track to reach 1.5 degrees Celsius by 2030 (Levin). The GDN could support the difficult and unprecedented task of remaining below the 2.0 Celsius mark.
However, the GDN will likely be inadequate and need to be bolstered with energy transition measures as well as other greenhouse gas offsets.
If we do not change course soon, “future generations will live in an environmentally impoverished world” (Dinerstein, 2019).
The GDN offers a scientifically backed plan that proposes ambitious targets for conservation as the most effective pathway to mitigate climate change and an extinction crisis.
At Rainforest Partnership we help indigenous communities protect and ensure the ownership of their land. Furthermore, at Rainforest Partnership we are reaching out to new regions for conservation and protection. It is invigorating to see hard scientific research supporting similar work to what we are currently doing.
There is still much to do, so join us on our mission to protect and regenerate tropical rainforest. In doing so we can further develop sustainable livelihoods that empower and respect people as well as nature.
Dinerstein, E., et al. “A Global Deal For Nature: Guiding Principles, Milestones, and Targets.” Science Advances, American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1 Apr. 2019, advances.sciencemag.org/content/5/4/eaaw2869.
Schwab, Nicole, and Kristin Rechberger. “We Need to Protect 30% of the Planet by 2030. This Is How We Can Do It.” World Economic Forum, 22 Apr. 2019, www.weforum.org/agenda/2019/04/why-protect-30-planet-2030-global-deal-nature-conservation/.
Asner, Greg. “To Solve Climate Change and Biodiversity Loss, We Need a Global Deal for Nature.” Vox, Vox, 22 Apr. 2019, www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2019/4/22/18511164/climate-change-2019-biodiversity-global-deal-for-nature.