Posted on 30 October 2018
The Living Planet Report 2018 presents a comprehensive overview of the state of our natural world, twenty years after the flagship report was first published.
reveals a particularly sobering picture : Human activity pushes planet’s natural systems, pillars of life on Earth, to the edge of the abyss. In fact, global populations of fish, birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles decreased by an average of 60% between 1970 and 2014.It is estimated that Earth has lost about half of corals in shallow waters in the last 30 years. In Madagascar in particular, the data provided by the Global Forest Watch for 2017 shows that our country has lost 510.000 ha of forest … a dark world record!
“Science is showing us the harsh reality our forests, oceans and rivers are enduring at our hands. Inch by inch and species by species, shrinking wildlife numbers and wild places are an indicator of the tremendous impact and pressure we are exerting on the planet, undermining the very living fabric that sustains us all: nature and biodiversity,” said Marco Lambertini, Director General, WWF International.
While highlighting the extent and impact of human activity on nature, the Living Planet Report 2018 also emphasizes the importance and the value of nature to people’s health and well-being and that of our societies and economies. Globally, nature provides services worth around US$125 trillion a year, while also helping ensure the supply of fresh air, clean water, food, energy, medicines and other products and materials.
Closer to us, in the Western Indian Ocean region, the economic value of various services given by marine and coastal ecosystems is estimated around $ 20 billion a year. The biodiversity is the “infrastructure “that supports our society and our development.
There is still time to reverse the trend of biodiversity loss. For this, WWF proposes the establishment of a roadmap for nature for 2020-2050. In 2020, leaders are expected to review the progress made on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Paris Agreement and the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). This is an unique opportunity to set an ambitious vision and clear common goals to restore the abundance of nature at levels that will enable it, but also us, to thrive.