Friday, October 29, 2010

It's A Great Start - UN Biodiversity

But much more is needed as we've waited way too long!!

UN Biodiversity Convention Delegates Reach Agreement To Protect 17% Land, 10% Oceans By 2020

TOKYO — 10/29/10 - Representatives to a U.N. conference on biodiversity agreed early Saturday to expand protected areas on land and at sea in the hopes of slowing the rate of extinction of the world's animals and plants and preventing further damage to its ecosystems.

After marathon negotiations that stretched hours past the designated time, delegates also managed to overcome divisions between rich and poor countries to agree to share access to and the benefits of genetic resources such as plants whose extracts have been developed into medicines – a key sticking point that had threatened to doom the entire two-week meeting in Nagoya, southwest of Tokyo.

Scientists estimate that the Earth is losing species 100 to 1,000 times the historical average, pushing the planet toward the greatest extinction age since the dinosaurs were wiped out 65 million years ago. They warn that unless action is taken to prevent biodiversity loss, extinctions will spike and the intricately interconnected natural world could collapse with devastating consequences, from plunging fish stocks to less access to clean water. {read rest}

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