Biodiversity and climate crisis cannot be solved in isolation, experts say as top world leaders gather for G7 summit | India News

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NEW DELHI: Noting that biodiversity and the climate crisis cannot be solved in isolation, 50 leading experts from around the world, backed by two intergovernmental bodies, have warned that “narrow-focus actions to combat climate change can, directly and indirectly, damaging nature and vice versa ”and identified the measures that policy makers can take to resolve the current crisis.
Their key suggestions, such as avoiding monoculture reforestation, eliminating subsidies (such as fertilizer subsidies) that support activities harmful to biodiversity, and increasing sustainable agricultural practices (focusing on crops that do not consume water) and forestry practices (saving ancient / natural forests) can also be quite useful for India, which is currently exploring multiple mitigation measures (emission reduction) to meet its climate action targets under the Paris agreement.
There are other suggestions that rich nations can specifically adopt. It includes changing individual consumption patterns, reducing loss and waste, and shifting diets towards more plant-based options, as overdependence on meat or animal consumption has been scientifically found to be quite unsustainable.
Two bodies supported by the United Nations: the Intergovernmental Platform for Science Policy on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) – have collaborated for the first time so that countries can choose those actions identified to face together both biodiversity and the climate crisis.
“… It is clear that we cannot solve these threats in isolation: either we solve both or we solve neither,” said Sveinung Rotevatn, the Norwegian minister for climate and environment, while speaking on the report from IPBES and IPCC experts. The report was released on Thursday, hours before the start of the G7 summit in the UK.
Some climate mitigation and adaptation measures identified by the report as damaging to biodiversity include planting trees in ecosystems that have not historically been forests; reforestation with monocultures; plant bioenergy crops in monocultures on a large part of the land; and increased irrigation capacity.
Experts pointed out how a focus on increasing irrigation capacity can often lead to long-term water conflicts, dam construction and soil degradation.
The report’s authors noted that while nature offers effective ways to help mitigate climate change, these solutions can only be effective if they are based on ambitious reductions in all man-made greenhouse gas emissions.
“The land and oceans are already doing a lot, absorbing almost 50% of CO2 of human emissions, but nature cannot do everything, ”said Ana María Hernández Salgar, President of IPBES, while emphasizing the need for transformative change in all parts of society and the economy.
The report that identified critical areas for action will provide policymakers with a clear idea of ​​how to prioritize their goals when they come together to discuss the issue at the UN conference on biodiversity in Kunming, China in October and at the UN conference on climate change in Glasgow, UK in November.

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