UN Issues Dire Environment, Climate and Population Warnings (yawn!)
“Humanity is changing Earth's climate so fast and devouring resources so voraciously that it is poised to bequeath a ravaged planet to future generations” [ark] — so finds the fourth Global Environment Outlook (GEO-4). The report is published by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and was compiled by 390 experts using two decades of data. At over six billion, the human population is now so big that “the amount of resources needed to sustain it exceeds what is available”. Regional predictions are equally grim [ark]. Another report this week published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society predicts that in coming centuries rising temperatures could wipe out more than half of the earth's species [ark].
Given “the world's scarce resources are being depleted at a wholly unsustainable rate despite urgent warnings sounded two decades ago,” surely world governments will be meeting in emergency sessions throughout the night in coming weeks, I expect to hear shortly of cancelling of new carbon emitting coal plants and shutting down market in ancient forest timbers. The media almost certainly will divert resources from celebrity news and go to round the clock emergency coverage of the Earth crises. And the average citizen will embrace cutting back on babies and consumption so we can all have a future. Or perhaps this report will be ignored and garner dust on a bookshelves like legions before.