‘When we looked at specific habitats (or “ecoregions”), we found that in almost half of them, more habitat has been lost than has been protected. Of developed nations, Australia is performing the worst.
‘This week, 196 signatory nations of the Convention of Biological Diversity, including Australia, are meeting in Cancun, Mexico, to discuss their progress towards averting the current biodiversity crisis.
‘While topics will vary widely from dealing with climate change, invasive species and illegal wildlife trade, a chief issue will likely be one that has been central to the convention since its ratification at Rio in 1992: how best to deal with habitat loss.’
The continuing loss of plant, animal and reptile species has dire consequences
David Shearman writes in Pearls & Irritations (20.1.21) about the cascading consequences of the continuing destruction of habitats and ecosystems in Australia and around the globe.
‘The global pandemic has engulfed the media, which consistently features health care workers struggling heroically in intensive care units to save stricken lives, sometimes at the expense of their own.
‘Intensive care units provide patients with mechanical support to breathe oxygen and maintain their nutrition, water needs and temperature control.
‘The same life support systems are provided to humanity by a stable climate, clean air, adequate water and the biodiversity of productive land. All are increasingly harmed by our failure to act on solid scientific evidence that we are harming them irrevocably.
‘These life support systems provide the basis for the sustainability of this continent for our health and survival.
‘A report card for each of these environmental life support systems would focus most attention on biodiversity because its importance is poorly understood and little is being done to maintain it. On most measureable environmental criteria, Australia’s environment is fast deteriorating.’