Stark warning Earth's climate warmest for 1000 years

@andygogo (1579)
December 31, 2006 2:23am CST
Stark warning Earth's climate warmest for 1000 years CD Sorry about the duplication. A claim as big as this is sure to be seen as "alarmist nonsense". It may (just may) repeat again MAY be true. Or are 1300 researchers wrong with no chance of being correct?. I think that there is a small chance this really is an unprecedented potential disaster. Just a SMALL chance----- but what is at stake is everything. Simply read the report folks nothing more. If you think there is no chance of a disaster say so. While you are at it if you disagree , please say why your opinion is better than such a massive report. I hope you are right. @@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@ The most comprehensive survey ever into the state of the planet concludes that human activities threaten the Earth's ability to sustain future generations. The report says the way society obtains its resources has caused irreversible changes that are degrading the natural processes that support life on Earth. This will compromise efforts to address hunger, poverty and improve healthcare. The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment was drawn up by 1,300 researchers from 95 nations over a period of four years. It reports that humans have changed most ecosystems beyond recognition in a dramatically short space of time. The way society has sourced its food, fresh water, timber, fibre and fuel over the past 50 years has seriously degraded the environment, the assessment (MA) concludes. The current state of affairs is likely to be a road block to the Millennium Development Goals agreed to by the world leaders at the United Nations in 2000, it says. "Any progress achieved in addressing the goals of poverty and hunger eradication, improved health, and environmental protection is unlikely to be sustained if most of the ecosystem 'services' on which humanity relies continue to be degraded," the report states. Way forward It says the requirements of a burgeoning world population after WW II drove an unsustainable rush for natural resources. More land was converted to agriculture since 1945 than in the 18th and 19th Centuries combined. More than half of all the synthetic nitrogen fertilisers - first made in 1913 - ever used on the planet were deployed after 1985. The MA authors say the pressure for resources has resulted in a substantial and largely irreversible loss in diversity of life on Earth, with some 10-30% of the mammal, bird and amphibian species currently threatened with extinction. They report only four ecosystem "services" have been enhanced in the last 50 years: increases in crop, livestock and aquaculture production, and increased carbon sequestration for global climate regulation. Two services - fisheries and fresh water - are now well beyond levels that can sustain current, much less future, demands. The experts warn these problems will substantially diminish the benefits for future generations. The assessment runs to 2,500 pages and is intended to inform global policy initiatives. It says changes in consumption patterns, better education, new technologies and higher prices for exploiting ecosystems could all help slow the damage being done to the planet. Global value "The over-riding conclusion of this assessment is that it lies within the power of human societies to ease the strains we are putting on the nature services of the planet, while continuing to use them to bring better living standards to all," the MA board of directors said in a statement. "Achieving this, however, will require radical changes in the way nature is treated at every level of decision-making and new ways of cooperation between government, business and civil society. The warning signs are there for all of us to see. The future now lies in our hands." The MA has cost some $20m to put together. It was funded by the Global Environment Facility, the United Nations Foundation, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the World Bank and others. Kofi Annan, the UN secretary-general, said the study "shows how human activities are causing environmental damage on a massive scale throughout the world, and how biodiversity - the very basis for life on Earth - is declining at an alarming rate". He went on: "Only by understanding the environment and how it works can we make the necessary decisions to protect it. Only by valuing all our precious natural and human resources can we hope to build a sustainable future." The report's details were being released on Wednesday at meetings in London, Washington DC, Tokyo, Brasilia, Cairo, Beijing, Nairobi, and New Delhi. More detailed assessments of world regions will follow later in the year. ASSESSMENT OVERVIEW Humans have radically altered ecosystems in the past 50 years Changes have brought many gains but at high ecosystem cost Further unsustainable practices will threaten development goals Workable solutions will require significant changes in policy [ Last edited by christopher_104 at 2006-2-10 04:12 PM ]
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