Restoring nature ‘the take a look at of our technology’: UN Normal Meeting President

Addressing a high-level dialogue on desertification, land degradation and drought, Volkan Bozkir described restoring nature as “the take a look at of our technology”, outlining the price of inaction. 

As a easy gesture to exhibit the need of soil to our survival, I’ve given each consultant in #UNGA a basil plant and have requested them to share updates on their development in step with key worldwide milestones for environmental motion. #EndLandLoss

— UN GA President (@UN_PGA) June 14, 2021

Existential disaster 

“Our planet is going through an environmental disaster that encompasses each facet of the pure world: land, local weather, and biodiversity, and air pollution on land and at sea”, he mentioned. 

“Our existence and skill to thrive on this world is totally dependent upon how we reset and rebuild our relationship with the pure world, together with the well being of our land.” 

The Normal Meeting assembly, the primary of its sort in a decade, is being held at a time when half of all agricultural land is degraded, threatening livelihoods but additionally driving extinction and intensifying local weather change. 

“With out a change in course, it will solely worsen”, Mr. Bozkir warned. 

“By 2050, international crop yields are estimated to fall by 10%, with some struggling as much as a 50% discount.  It will result in a pointy 30% rise in world meals costs, threatening progress on starvation and diet, in addition to a myriad of related improvement objectives.” 

The fallout may additionally see hundreds of thousands of farmers pushed into poverty, whereas some 135 million folks may very well be displaced by 2045, upping the chance of instability and pressure. 

Path to progress 

Mr Bozkir introduced international locations collectively to impress worldwide cooperation to avert additional degradation and revive degraded land, forward of UN summits this yr on the subjects of land, biodiversity and local weather. 

The Group has been clear on what steps they should take, he mentioned. 

“First, international locations ought to undertake and implement Land Degradation Neutrality targets, which revive land by way of sustainable land and water administration methods, and restore biodiversity and ecosystem features”, he suggested.  

Because the world embarks on 10 years of motion on ecosystem restoration by way of 2030, Mr. Bozkir mentioned international locations also needs to apply classes realized over the Decade to Combat Desertification, which concluded final yr. 

“Land restoration should be on the coronary heart of present worldwide processes, such because the Nationally Decided Contributions (NDCs) to fight local weather change, the post-2020 World Biodiversity Framework, and COVID-19 restoration and stimulus plans”, he added. 

With “unsustainable agriculture” being a essential driver of desertification, the Meeting President known as for governments to conduct nationwide dialogues on agricultural reform forward of the UN Meals Methods Summit in September. 

He additionally confused the necessity for “better synergy” between peace, improvement and humanitarian motion, with the Sustainable Improvement Objectives (SDGs) serving as a roadmap.  Cooperation right here could be achieved by way of common implementation of a UN framework on catastrophe threat discount, which he mentioned will improve prevention efforts. 

Restore pure ecosystems 

He additional confused the necessity to commit a better share of local weather finance to forests and agriculture. 

“For an estimated $2.7 trillion per yr – comfortably inside the scope of the proposed COVID spending – we may remodel the world’s economies by restoring pure ecosystems, rewarding agriculture that retains soils wholesome, and incentivizing enterprise fashions that prioritize renewable, recyclable or biodegradable services and products. Inside a decade, the worldwide financial system may create 395 million new jobs and generate over $10 trillion,” he mentioned. 

The rights of the world’s multiple billion agricultural staff should additionally not be forgotten.  Most don’t personal the lands on which they work, he mentioned, as at present, one per cent of farms management greater than 70 per cent of the world’s farmlands.  

“Investing straight in land staff is an funding in our land and our planet’s future”, Mr. Bozkir acknowledged. 

“After we allow staff to put money into their land, we assist agricultural productiveness. Environmental stewardship, wealth technology, civic participation, and the rule of regulation profit, particularly indigenous and small-scale producers, together with feminine farmers.” 

‘Soil is the answer’ 

To strengthen the significance of soil for survival, Mr. Bozkir gave every consultant a basil plant, together with a request to replace him on their development. 

“Restoring nature is the take a look at of our technology and certainly of this multilateral establishment. That is the problem the UN was born to satisfy,” he acknowledged. 

“If we upscale land motion at present we will safeguard international meals and water safety, cut back emissions, preserve biodiversity and guard towards future systemic well being and environmental dangers. Put merely, soil is the answer.” 

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