WASHINGTON – The United Nations released its Global Assessment Report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services evaluating the health of our world’s biodiversity and natural systems. The report warns of the destruction of natural systems we depend on for life and the loss of up to one million species to extinction if drastic mitigation efforts are not taken in the coming years.
Following is a statement from Susan Casey-Lefkowitz, Chief Program Officer for the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).
“This report is a resounding call to action. We have known for years that significant conservation action is needed, and this report makes clear we cannot wait any longer. Depleted oceans, ravaged forests, disappearing pollinators and vanishing streams are not just a threat to our culture and natural heritage, they threaten our existence.”
“There are very clear solutions that we can adopt right now. Many of those fixes can also help address the looming threat of climate change. For example, earlier this year, we joined many of the world’s biggest conservation organizations, to call for setting aside 30 percent of the planet’s lands and oceans as protected areas by 2030. We must also end the uprooting of our great forests like the boreal and the canopies in the American southeast, for use in toilet paper and exported wood pellets. In doing this, we will protect imperiled species and capture carbon. We can improve agricultural practices and fisheries to fight climate change, save wildlife and put us on better economic footing.”
The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 3 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists, and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world's natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City; Washington, D.C.; Los Angeles; San Francisco; Chicago; Bozeman, Montana; and Beijing. Visit us at www.nrdc.org and follow us on Twitter @NRDC