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  • Writer's pictureA.A.S.

World Environment Day

All over the world, ecosystems are threatened. From forests and drylands to farmlands and lakes, natural spaces on which humanity’s existence depends are reaching a tipping point.

 

According to the UN Convention to Combat Desertification, up to 40% of the planet’s land is degraded, directly affecting half of the world’s population. The number and duration of droughts has increased by 29% since 2000 – without urgent action, droughts may affect over three-quarters of the world's population by 2050.

 

Land restoration is a key pillar of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration (2021-2030), a rallying call for the protection and revival of ecosystems all around the world, which is critical to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.

 

This is why World Environment Day 2024 focuses on land restoration, halting desertification and building drought resilience under the slogan “Our land. Our future. We are #GenerationRestoration.”  We cannot turn back time, but we can grow forests, revive water sources, and bring back soils. We are the generation that can make peace with land.

 

2024 will mark the 30th anniversary of the UN Convention to Combat Desertification. The sixteenth session of the Conference of the Parties (COP 16) to the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) will be held in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, from 2 to 13 December 2024.

 

Significant data:

 

  • Every five seconds, the equivalent of one football pitch of soil is eroded. Yet, it takes 1.000 years to generate 3 centimeters of topsoil.

  • Trees in urban areas can cool the air by up to 5°C, reducing air conditioning needs by 25%.

  • Lakes, rivers and wetlands hold 20–30% of global carbon despite occupying only 5–8% of its land surface.


Source: The United Nations



 

 

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