Restoring balance with nature-Earthbeat wants your stories on actions for a greener world
Air, water, and food. Clothes, medication and materials for construction and appliances. Energy to warm us, cool us, transport us and power our communications. Leisure, culture and inspiration for art. Think about it - all the essentials of life come from nature.
Are you a young person acting to make the world a better place? Create a short film, share it online, join the global conversation.
The Ecosphere is the zone of life on Earth. It is the atmosphere, the land, the oceans, forests, soils and all the amazing plants, animals and microbes living there. All these systems and the complex interactions between them, create the planetary environment where people thrive.
Whether rich or poor, urban or rural, connected or remote, all human society is entirely dependent on nature. Whoever and wherever we are in the world, our prosperity, health and security all depend on the Earth’s natural systems. But human activities are throwing nature out of balance, putting ourselves at risk.
Humans have created the linked environmental crises of climate change, biodiversity loss and land degradation. To be successful in restoring the health of the planet, we need to tackle all three emergencies together, and urgently. Earthbeat is partnering with three United Nations conventions, which are working with countries worldwide to agree global action to protect climate, biodiversity and land.
Land is key to tackling climate change, protecting biodiversity, conserving ecosystems and growing the food we eat and the fibre for our clothes. Healthy land supports the trees, vegetation, micro-organisms, animals and the people living on it. Land and the life it supports store huge quantities of carbon and take it out of the atmosphere.
Land can be degraded through unsustainable agriculture management or changes in the climate. We now know that land restoration can help to turn even severely degraded land to be green and productive again.
Sustainable land management and restoration can protect land and bring benefits to ecosystems as well as farming, job creation and the reduction of disaster risk.
Restoring the soils of degraded ecosystems can store up to 3 billion tons of carbon annually.
Climate science shows that we need to keep new increases to global temperature below 1.5C, the safe upper limit. To do this we must reduce carbon emissions by half by 2030, only 9 years away.
That’s a huge challenge, but much action has already started. For example, the growth of sustainable energy or the move to electric transport or community tree planting are some examples of the changes we need to make.
Urgent action is also needed to restore the planet's ecosystems that have been degraded or destroyed.
We have to speed up our efforts and do much, much more – to reduce emissions, restore natural carbon storage and adapt to higher temperatures.
Everyone from multinational corporations to local communities to private individuals all have an important role to play.
Protecting and restoring natural habitats and ecosystems is key for diversity of species and ecosystem services including regulating climate. Forests, mangroves, grasslands, croplands, peatlands, wetlands, inland waters and marine and coastal ecosystems give us food, recreation, fibre, clean air and water - they also store carbon and help protect against extreme weather like droughts and floods. It is crucial to preserve them.
Healthy ecosystems can provide reliable and cost-effective natural infrastructure. Coral reefs and mangroves protect coasts against flooding that are expected to increase with climate change. Urban greenery can collect surface water and support resilience against storms and erosion. Green infrastructure such as parks bring a better quality of life in cities.
Biodiversity and healthy ecosystems have a vital role to play in tackling climate change and in ensuring human health, well-being and security.
We want your 3-minute video stories on what you are doing:
- to protect and restore land and soil and the life it supports
- to protect and restore biodiversity and ecosystems in rural, urban or peri-urban areas
- to meet the challenge of climate change in your communities.
Links for more information
- UNCCD - Land and Climate Change
- UN Climate - Introduction to Land Use
- UN Climate - What do Adaptation to Climate Change and Climate Resilience mean?
- UNCCD - Land and Biodiversity
- UN Decade of Restoration
- UN Climate - Local Communities and Indigenous Peoples Platform
- CBD - Ecosystem
- UNCCD - Land and Youth
- CBD - Agricultural Biodiversity
- CBD - Youth
- UN Decade of Restoration - Farmland
- CBD - Traditional