“Humanity is waging battle on nature. That is mindless and suicidal,” Guterres wrote within the preface of the United Nations Surroundings Programme report revealed on Thursday.
“The implications of our recklessness are already obvious in human struggling, towering financial losses and the accelerating erosion of life on Earth,” he stated.
Guterres additionally stated that the local weather emergency, the biodiversity disaster and the air pollution kill tens of millions of individuals yearly and have left the planet damaged.
“However [the report] additionally guides us to a safer place by offering a peace plan and a post-war rebuilding programme.”
Among the many suggestions was that greater than $5 trillion in annual subsidies to sectors similar to fossil fuels and industrial agriculture, fishing and mining needs to be redirected to speed up a shift to a low-carbon future and restore nature.
Governments also needs to look past financial development as an indicator of efficiency and take account of the worth of preserving ecosystems, the report stated.
It aimed to encourage governments to take extra formidable steps at a UN local weather convention in Glasgow in November and through parallel talks to agree upon a brand new international pact on preserving biodiversity.
With international locations launching financial restoration packages in response to the coronavirus pandemic, the authors hoped their coverage prescriptions would encourage extra coordinated motion to quickly remodel harmful industrial and monetary programs.
Robert Watson, lead creator of the report, informed Al Jazeera that there have been “vested pursuits” that have been stopping motion.
“We now have subsidies for agriculture, for vitality, for fossil fuels which are perverse. They encourage the usage of fossil fuels. They encourage the usage of dangerous agricultural practices,” he stated.
“If we are able to get the enterprise neighborhood to work with governments around the globe, I’m optimistic we are able to begin to transfer in the fitting path,” Watson stated.
“I believe that the majority governments do realise that local weather change is adversely affecting meals safety, water safety, human well being and poverty alleviation.”
The report highlighted what report co-author Rachel Warren of the College of East Anglia known as “a litany of scary statistics that hasn’t actually been introduced collectively”:
• Earth is on the way in which to an extra 1.9C (3.5 levels Fahrenheit) warming from now, excess of the internationally agreed-upon targets within the Paris accord.
• About 9 million individuals a yr die from air pollution.
• About a million of Earth’s eight million species of crops and animals are threatened with extinction.
• As much as 400 million tonnes of heavy metals, poisonous sludge and different industrial waste are dumped into the world’s waters yearly.
• Greater than three billion individuals are affected by land degradation, and solely 15 p.c of Earth’s wetlands stay intact.
• About 60 p.c of fish shares are fished on the most ranges. There are greater than 400 oxygen-depleted “lifeless zones” and marine plastics air pollution has elevated tenfold since 1980.