Tuesday, October 30, 2007
One in ten (!) of the world's large rivers runs dry every year before it reaches the sea, the magnificent Murray is one such river. The danger to rivers globally was raised this week as part of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) report: Global Environment Outlook: Environment for Development.
At the very time when the planetary crisis was announced by UNEP following a study from 1400 scientists across the globle, the courts in London were debating the validity of showing Al Gore's An Inconvenient truth to school students without an accompanying critique of Gore's conclusions. This court ruling and the scientific evidence seem poles apart.
The UNEP report made a startling statement: 'The future of humanity has been put at risk by a failure to address environmental problems including climate change, species extinction and a growing human population.'
The thought of the extent of ecological damage and the human cause of this life-threatening problem should be so shocking as to galvanise urgent action but UNEP says that governments worldwide have their collective heads in the sand. And in Australia as well.
The earth is overused and undervalued. The UNEP report found that human consumption and its accompanying ecological footprint is signficantly outstripping the earth's resources to match the demand. Biodiversity was next on UNEP's list of great concerns with 30% of amphibians, 23% of mammals and 12% of birds in danger of extinction.
There is not much more to say. It is a frightening picture.