Why is Sustainable Management of Oceans, Forests and Biodiversity a Population Issue?
“We need to protect our oceans as if our lives depend on it, because they do.”
That was the message brought by Dr. Sylvia Earle from National Geographic to last week’s Eighth Open Working Group (OWG) on Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) at the United Nations, where governments of 69 countries came together to discuss the theme of “oceans, forests and biodiversity.”
The pollution of our oceans is growing and loss of forests and biodiversity is increasing. With 7 billion people living in this world, each requiring resources from nature, population dynamics need to be considered as a major factor when looking at responses to environmental degradation.
The presenters at the Open Working Group urged delegates to recognize that oceans, forests and biodiversity are not just resources to be used, but engines of sustainable development. Losing them would result in the end of humankind.
For me, the message echoed my firsthand experience. I live in Malawi, where the population has tripled over the past 40 years and 85 percent of people depend on natural resources for their daily needs. But over-exploitation of natural resources and environmental degradation is rapidly changing Malawi’s landscapes. Fish catches in Malawi’s lakes have been declining and over-fishing, compounded by increasing population, is part of the problem.
To read the full article, please click here: http://populationaction.org/blog/2014/02/11/why-is-sustainable-management-of-oceans-forests-and-biodiversity-a-population-issue/
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