The 10 keys to saving the global environment

The 10 keys to saving the global environment

Some 2,500 delegates from 174 countries have approved several resolutions that raise priority environmental issues, such as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), climate change or the illegal trade in species.

This article summarizes these resolutions in ten keys to save the world environment.

1. Meet the 2030 Agenda of the Sustainable Development Goals

The SDGs, approved in October last year by the United Nations, recognize the need to unite human development and environmental protection to achieve sustainable development and eradicate poverty and hunger in the world. Its leaders propose several goals for 2030 and their execution will be a "priority" task at the UN. Among the measures to achieve sustainable development, environmental education and training are considered essential.

2. Support the Paris Agreement

The Paris Climate Summit Agreement (COP 21) could be the starting point of an unstoppable and growing inertia to combat climate change between now and the next few years. For this, institutions, companies and consumers must take various measures at the global level.

The UNEA agreed that the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) should accelerate support to countries, especially developing countries, to implement the agreement and access the necessary financing and technology.

3. Combat the illegal trade in wildlife and its derivatives

Wildlife smuggling involves placing various species on the brink of extinction, embezzlement of countries' natural heritage, and strengthening international criminal networks. For this reason, new measures of cooperation at the national and international level are essential to prevent and eliminate it, such as declaring it a "serious crime" in the laws of the countries.

4. Protect the seas and oceans

There are an estimated 5.2 trillion pieces of plastic floating in the oceans, damaging the marine environment and its biodiversity. To address this problem, strategies have been sought for governments and manufacturers have been encouraged to consider the environmental impacts of microsphere products. Coral reefs have also been another important element of consideration.

5. Promote caring for the environment for better health

According to estimates by the World Health Organization (WHO), some 12.6 million deaths are attributable to environmental factors each year. Among the resolutions passed related to health and the environment, the commitment to the rational management of chemicals and waste stands out. Lead exposure claimed 654,000 lives in 2010; hence the need to ensure proper recycling of said waste, most of it batteries.

Greater efforts are also called for to combat air pollutants such as ozone and fine particulate matter, which cause half a million premature deaths each year. Indoor air pollution is also worrisome: in Africa alone it kills 600,000 people a year, mostly in the kitchen.

6. Consume and produce in a sustainable way

Unsustainable production and consumption damages natural resources and the global environment. Consumers are essential in assuming rational and ecological habits. The United Nations places special emphasis on the prevention, reduction and reuse of food waste: one third of all food produced each year is lost or wasted in the world.

7. Protect the environment in areas affected by armed conflict

Countries should take appropriate measures to ensure compliance with international humanitarian law in protecting the environment in places with armed conflict. For example, Ukraine's resolution to recognize environmental problems as a cause of armed conflict was passed.

8. Consolidate biodiversity for the well-being of humanity

Biodiversity is key to sustaining life on Earth and the natural resources that enable human development. For this reason, it is essential to facilitate cooperation between institutions related to biological diversity.

9. Fight against desertification, land degradation and drought

Every year around 12 million hectares (the area of ​​Andalusia and Extremadura together) are lost in the world due to desertification. Soil degradation directly affects 1.5 billion people around the world, according to the United Nations. For this reason, it is urgent to increase global efforts to recover and protect fertile soils.

10. Mitigate the effects of sand and dust storms

Lack of air quality is a global problem that kills seven million people each year. A growing problem that deserved the attention of the UNEA was sand and dust storms. Experts have called for the establishment of a research network around the planet on this threat.

Seen in The Epoch Times

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