Over the past six months, two important international reports have highlighted the urgency of environmental challenges.
In May, the United Nations issued The Global Assessment on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, updating its 2005 Millennium Ecosystem Assessment. This report generated headlines, including one in the Washington Post May 6: “One million species face extinction … humans will suffer as a result.”
In August, the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) issued a Special Report on Climate Change. Its previous report, issued in 2018, warned that the world faces a tipping point if global temperatures warm more than 1.5˚C above preindustrial levels, and that actions to prevent that threshold from being passed need to be implemented no later than 2030. These two reports discuss the linkages among climate change, food security, deforestation, species extinction and human well-being.
Clearly, these reports and voices point to current concerns that need action.