Edge of the Great Dying: Extinction crisis

At least a million forms of life hover at the edge of extinction as humans take over the world. Lead author Sandra Diaz on the shocking new 2019 UN report.

How did we get into the position of trying to persuade city-dwelling humans we still need nature? How can we describe the speed at which life is disappearing? All that is in a stunning new report from the United Nations. Dr. Sandra Diaz, lead author of this report taking the world by storm: IPBES Global Assessment Report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services. On-going human damage to other living things is as great a threat as climate change.

Sandra Diaz's scientific work is decorated with many awards. She's one of the most cited environmental scientists in the world, with over 300 peer-reviewed papers. She works from the University of Cordoba in Argentina.

Show by Radio Ecoshock, reposted under CC License. Episode details at https://www.ecoshock.org/2019/05/at-the-edge-of-the-great-dying.html

Stop Fossil Fuels researches and disseminates effective strategies and tactics to halt fossil fuel combustion as fast as possible. Learn more at https://stopfossilfuels.org

SHOW DETAILS
We should be shocked by this massive new report coming from The Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, the IPBES. Humans are driving out “unnecessary” life forms. But we can't know which species are “disposable” as we take over everything; don’t know what species critical to our survival might disappear. We barely even know what species are here. Consider the chain of bacteria necessary in our soil for food, and in our gut, to process food. We are not independent of the great chain of life.

“Biodiversity and nature’s contributions to people are our common heritage and humanity’s most important life-supporting ‘safety net’. But our safety net is stretched almost to breaking point,” said Díaz.

CRITICAL ROLE OF INDIGENOUS PEOPLE
“At least 25% of global land area is traditionally owned, managed, used or occupied by Indigenous Peoples. These areas include approximately 35% of the area that is formally protected, and approximately 35% of all remaining terrestrial areas with very low human intervention.

Nature managed by Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities is under increasing pressure but is generally declining less rapidly than in other lands—although 72% of local indicators developed and used by Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities show the deterioration of nature that underpins local livelihoods.”

Even if we did not have greenhouse gas emissions, nature would still be severely threatened.

KEY STATISTICS
75%: terrestrial environment “severely altered” by human actions (marine environments 66%)

47%: reduction in global indicators of ecosystem extent and condition against their estimated natural baselines, with many continuing to decline by at least 4% per decade

28%: global land area held and/or managed by Indigenous Peoples, including 40+% of formally protected areas and 37% of all remaining terrestrial areas with very low human intervention

+/-60 billion: tons of renewable and non-renewable resources extracted globally each year, up nearly 100% since 1980

15%: increase in global per capita consumption since 1980

85+% of wetlands present in 1700 had been lost by 2000—loss of wetlands is currently three times faster in percentage terms than forest loss.

8 million: total estimated number of animal and plant species on Earth (including 5.5 million insect species)

Tens to hundreds of times: the extent to which the current rate of global species extinction is higher compared to average over the last 10 million years. The rate is accelerating.

Up to 1 million: species threatened with extinction, many within decades

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said the political will to fight climate change has faded at the same time as it is getting worse for those feeling its effects. The same can be said about all the wonderful living species on this planet.

We may desire a planet entirely designed for us, every available space tailored to produce food for us, give us pleasure, or keep our mountains of waste out of sight. Nothing to annoy us like mosquitoes or poisonous snakes. That is a suicidal dream.

This is a summary for policy-makers. But in America, Brazil, and many other countries, there are no environmental policy-makers, but rather policy breakers. We are sliding backward rather than going forward.

I am worried the very frightening message in this big report may be lost in three things:

1. sheer size of the view and masses of numbers
2. bureaucratic and scientific language of delivery
3. seemingly obligatory optimism. Sandra Diaz says the battle is not lost. But we must say we are losing at this point.

Algae in a pond can expand until it runs out of oxygen and then crashes. Is there a crash point for humans and are we nearing it?

Related Books

Climate Change: What Everyone Needs to Know

by Joseph Romm
0190866101The essential primer on what will be the defining issue of our time, Climate Change: What Everyone Needs to Know® is a clear-eyed overview of the science, conflicts, and implications of our warming planet. From Joseph Romm, Chief Science Advisor for National Geographic's Years of Living Dangerously series and one of Rolling Stone's "100 people who are changing America," Climate Change offers user-friendly, scientifically rigorous answers to the most difficult (and commonly politicized) questions surrounding what climatologist Lonnie Thompson has deemed "a clear and present danger to civilization.". Available On Amazon

Climate Change: The Science of Global Warming and Our Energy Future second edition Edition

by Jason Smerdon
0231172834This second edition of Climate Change is an accessible and comprehensive guide to the science behind global warming. Exquisitely illustrated, the text is geared toward students at a variety of levels. Edmond A. Mathez and Jason E. Smerdon provide a broad, informative introduction to the science that underlies our understanding of the climate system and the effects of human activity on the warming of our planet.Mathez and Smerdon describe the roles that the atmosphere and ocean play in our climate, introduce the concept of radiation balance, and explain climate changes that occurred in the past. They also detail the human activities that influence the climate, such as greenhouse gas and aerosol emissions and deforestation, as well as the effects of natural phenomena.  Available On Amazon

The Science of Climate Change: A Hands-On Course

by Blair Lee, Alina Bachmann
194747300XThe Science of Climate Change: A Hands-On Course uses text and eighteen hands-on activities to explain and teach the science of global warming and climate change, how humans are responsible, and what can be done to slow or stop the rate of global warming and climate change. This book is a complete, comprehensive guide to an essential environmental topic. Subjects covered in this book include: how molecules transfer energy from the sun to warm the atmosphere, greenhouse gases, the greenhouse effect, global warming, the Industrial Revolution, the combustion reaction, feedback loops, the relationship between weather and climate, climate change, carbon sinks, extinction, carbon footprint, recycling, and alternative energy. Available On Amazon

From The Publisher:
Purchases on Amazon go to defray the cost of bringing you InnerSelf.comelf.com, MightyNatural.com, and ClimateImpactNews.com at no cost and without advertisers that track your browsing habits. Even if you click on a link but don't buy these selected products, anything else you buy in that same visit on Amazon pays us a small commission. There is no additional cost to you, so please contribute to the effort. You can also use this link to use to Amazon at any time so you can help support our efforts.

 

enafarzh-CNzh-TWnltlfrdehiiditjakomsfaptruesswsvthtrurvi

EVIDENCE

What Happens When The Permafrost Thaws?
by Official W5
Almost half of Canada sits on permanently frozen land called permafrost, but climate change is causing it to thaw and…
Annual Assessment of North Cascades Glaciers Finds Shocking Loss of Volume
Annual Assessment of North Cascades Glaciers Finds Shocking Loss of Volume
by Mauri Pelto
The summer of 2019 found the North Cascade Glacier Climate Project in the field for the 36th consecutive summer…
For The First Time, We Can Measure The Human Footprint On Antarctica
For The First Time, We Can Measure The Human Footprint On Antarctica
by Shaun Brooks and Julia Jabour
Most people picture Antarctica as a frozen continent of wilderness, but people have been living – and building – there…
The Air Above Antarctica Is Suddenly Getting Warmer
The Air Above Antarctica Is Suddenly Getting Warmer
by Harry Hendon, et al
Record warm temperatures above Antarctica over the coming weeks are likely to bring above-average spring temperatures…
How Close Is 1.5°C? Depends When You Measure From
How Close Is 1.5°C? Depends When You Measure From
Most scientists studying global warming compare today’s temperatures to those of the late 19th century because that is…
Why Methane Emissions Matter To Climate Change
Why Methane Emissions Matter To Climate Change
by Anthony J. Marchese and Dan Zimmerle
The EPA on Aug. 29 unveiled a proposal to rescind regulations to limit methane emissions from the oil and gas industry.
French wines show hot dry years are now normal
French Wines Show Hot Dry Years Are Now Normal
by Tim Radford
Records have begun to topple for the world’s finest tipple. French wines can now count 664 years of vintage information…
The Amazon Fire Crisis Has Been 500 Years In The Making – As Brazil's Indigenous People Know Only Too Well
The Amazon Fire Crisis Has Been 500 Years In The Making – As Brazil's Indigenous People Know Only Too Well
by Darren Reid
São Paulo – the largest city in the Americas – was recently plunged into darkness in the middle of the day due to smoke…

LATEST VIDEOS

Bill Nye And The Climate Crisis
by MSNBC
On a special show before a live studio audience, Bill Nye the science guy discusses the climate crisis with Chris Hayes.
How Greenland's Massive Ice Melt Will Totally Transform The World
by Channel 4 News
Remember that heatwave back in August? Well, the Arctic remembers it too. Record rates of ice melt have been recorded…
China Is Positioned To Lead On Climate Change As The US Rolls Back Its Policies
China Is Positioned To Lead On Climate Change As The US Rolls Back Its Policies
by Kelly Sims Gallagher and Fang Zhang
As the effects of climate change become more widespread and alarming, U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres has…
What Happens When The Permafrost Thaws?
by Official W5
Almost half of Canada sits on permanently frozen land called permafrost, but climate change is causing it to thaw and…
We Are Striking to Disrupt the System: An Hour with 16-Year-Old Climate Activist Greta Thunberg
by Democracy Now!
In her first extended broadcast interview in the United States, we spend the hour with Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old…
Annual Assessment of North Cascades Glaciers Finds Shocking Loss of Volume
Annual Assessment of North Cascades Glaciers Finds Shocking Loss of Volume
by Mauri Pelto
The summer of 2019 found the North Cascade Glacier Climate Project in the field for the 36th consecutive summer…
Breakdown In Coral Reef Iconic Spawning Puts Species At Risk Of Extinction
Breakdown In Coral Reef Iconic Spawning Puts Species At Risk Of Extinction
by Heidi Burdett
Breakdown In Coral Reef Iconic Spawning Puts Species At Risk Of Extinction
How Climate Change Is Driving Emigration From Central America
How Climate Change Is Driving Emigration From Central America
by Miranda Cady Hallett
Clouds of dust rose behind the wheels of the pickup truck as we hurtled over the back road in Palo Verde, El Salvador.

LATEST ARTICLES

How Climate Change Could Threaten The World’s Traditional Food Dishes
How Climate Change Could Threaten The World’s Traditional Food Dishes
by Daisy Dunne
Climate change is likely to alter the way that the world grows, trades and enjoys food.
Bill Nye And The Climate Crisis
by MSNBC
On a special show before a live studio audience, Bill Nye the science guy discusses the climate crisis with Chris Hayes.
How Greenland's Massive Ice Melt Will Totally Transform The World
by Channel 4 News
Remember that heatwave back in August? Well, the Arctic remembers it too. Record rates of ice melt have been recorded…
China Is Positioned To Lead On Climate Change As The US Rolls Back Its Policies
China Is Positioned To Lead On Climate Change As The US Rolls Back Its Policies
by Kelly Sims Gallagher and Fang Zhang
As the effects of climate change become more widespread and alarming, U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres has…
We Need More Carbon In Our Soil To Help Australian Farmers Through The Drought
We Need More Carbon In Our Soil To Help Australian Farmers Through The Drought
by Nanthi Bolan
Australia has never been a stranger to droughts, but climate change is now super-charging them.
Climate Breakdown Is Pushing Brazil's Iconic Araucaria Tree To Extinction
Climate Breakdown Is Pushing Brazil's Iconic Araucaria Tree To Extinction
by Oliver Wilson
For hundreds of thousands of years, the distinctive candelabra shapes of Araucaria trees (Araucaria angustifolia) have…
Roiled By Trump Politics, NOAA Seeks Accountability, Atonement
by MSNBC
Rachel Maddow reports on the backlash within the weather science community over an unsigned statement from NOAA…
Extreme Cities: Ground Zero for Climate Change
by The Laura Flanders Show
No matter how we tackle climate change, cities are key.