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Glum UN Environmental Report October 27, 2007

Posted by tkcollier in Economy & Business, Enviroment, Science & Technology.
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The World Is Not Enough for Humans: Scientific American
Since 1987 annual emissions of carbon dioxide—the leading greenhouse gas warming the globe—have risen by a third, global fishing yields have declined by 10.6 million metric tons and the amount of land required to sustain humanity has swelled to more than 54 acres (22 hectares) per person. Yet, Earth can provide only roughly 39 acres (15 hectares) for every person living today, according to the United Nation’s Environmental Program’s (UNEP) Global Environment Outlook, released this week. “There are no major issues,” the report’s authors write of the period since their first report in 1987, “for which the foreseeable trends are favorable.”

Despite some successes—such as the Montreal Protocol’s 95 percent reduction in chemicals that damage the atmosphere’s ozone layer and a rise in protected reserves of habitat to cover 12 percent of the planet—humanity’s impact continues to grow.

“The systematic destruction of the earth’s natural and nature-based resources has reached a point where the economic viability of economies is being challenged,” Achim Steiner, UNEP’s executive director, said in a statement. “The bill we hand our children may prove impossible to pay.”

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