Earth Hour 2022 saw millions of people around the world join together in a message of solidarity for people and planet – and call for a future where we thrive in harmony with nature, with one another and the one home we all share.
But how do we move away from the current crisis of accelerating decline of our wildlife and wildernesses?
© Ernest Sumelong / WWF-Cameroon
WWF and partners are calling for urgent action to halt and reverse nature loss this decade – establishing a nature-positive world by 2030 where there is more nature than there is today.
Recently, countries met to negotiate a new UN plan for nature that could set our world on track to reverse nature loss. With the final plan due to be adopted at the UN COP15 biodiversity conference later this year, we ask what needs to be done if we are to secure a nature-positive world by 2030.
- Countries working together
Our world is connected in more ways than we know. To reverse nature loss for people and our planet we need to work together.
Just like climate change, nature loss is not bound by borders, and so it must be tackled together, with countries agreeing on one clear, unified path forward. For example, deforestation in the Amazon is not just a regional issue, given that countries around the world are both driving demand for Amazonian products and are impacted by the effects of climate change.
At the latest UN biodiversity talks, WWF was pleased to see growing consensus around a shared aim of reversing biodiversity loss by 2030 for a nature-positive world. Agreeing a guiding light for nature loss – similar to the 1.5°C goal we already have for climate change – is essential and hopes are now high that this ambition will be adopted in the final plan at COP15, committing the world to ending this decade with more nature, not less.
- Finance for biodiversity
A global plan for nature must be backed up by sufficient funding. If not then ambitions plans to reverse nature loss will fall flat.
There remains much debate by countries on both who pays for action to tackle biodiversity loss and the steps needed to transform financial systems so that they work for, not against, nature. Developing countries are calling for more finance to support action on biodiversity and there is still little consensus on how to finance a new plan for nature.
Without increased finance, accompanied by a strong process that includes check backs to ensure all countries are on track, plans to reverse nature loss will not be able to deliver ambitious action on the ground.
Finance for nature is an essential part of securing a world where people and nature thrive.
© David Bebber / WWF-UK
- Supporting all people
Nature loss touches all our lives in so many ways – threatening opportunities to reduce poverty, address social and gender inequalities, and more. So we must ensure that everyone has a voice at the table. And that includes those who have been historically under-represented, such as women and young people.
Any plan must also recognize the key role played by Indigenous Peoples and local communities in safeguarding nature. They are custodians of many of the remaining natural spaces left in our world, and it is essential that their rights are recognized and secured.
The good news is that those negotiating the new global plan for nature have accepted the vital role they play and their voices are being heard. A successful plan to reverse biodiversity loss must be underpinned by respect for the rights and roles of all communities.
- Greater leadership
Thanks to people like you raising their voices, our leaders are finally recognizing that urgent action is needed to safeguard our natural world for both people and all other life on Earth.
More than 90 world leaders have recently pledged to reverse biodiversity loss this decade. However, political leadership was lacking at this month’s biodiversity negotiations. This has to improve if we are to change course and secure a healthy and sustainable future for all.
We need leaders to step up to the combined challenges of nature loss and climate change. This means putting a strong priority on securing an ambitious nature-positive plan for nature at COP15 that includes all the right ingredients to drive immediate action on the ground while supporting climate action. Together, we can secure an equitable, nature-positive and carbon-neutral world.
- Follow the global discussions to reverse nature loss on Twitter
Read more about a nature-positive world