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Message of the CBD Executive Secretary on the Occasion of International Mother Earth Day “Environmental and Climate Literacy”

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Message of the CBD Executive Secretary on the Occasion of International Mother Earth Day “Environmental and Climate Literacy”

"The Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity, Cristiana Paşca Palmer reminds us that we need to become familiar with the issues around climate, biodiversity and our environment if we are to act effectively to sustain the living world of which we are a part and on which we all depend.

Developing environmental and climate literacy around the world is about giving people the tools to understand their impact on, and relationship with climate, biodiversity and the environment around them.

On the one hand, this involves bringing attention to disturbing facts, such that climate change is already driving significant loss of biodiversity, particularly in vulnerable ecosystems and, as a consequence, having severe impacts on peoples lives. On the other, it is about demonstrating that biodiversity and healthy ecosystems provide essential solutions in mitigating and adapting to climate change.

The biodiversity of the world’s forests, wetlands and oceans contribute to long-term sequestration of carbon, reduce the impacts of extreme events produced by climate change such as droughts and floods, provides resilience & protection to food supplies in a changing climate.

Understanding these relationships brings understanding that each of us can and need to act to conserve, restore and ensure the sustainable use of biodiversity. For example, an understanding that reducing meat consumption has a positive benefit for the climate and biodiversity. The meat industry is responsible for approximately 20 per cent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. With the tripling of global meat consumption over the last four decades, and the result that 36 billions of tons of greenhouse gases are produced annually, this kind of knowledge can spur action.

She concludes by urging to encourage one another to learn to “read” and to understand the language of environment, climate and biodiversity. Then we can have the conversation that will take us all towards a sustainable future, a future of life in harmony with nature."

7 September, 2017 - 03:33