published on 8 August 2019 in air
IPCC Report: the time has come to take action to save our Planet
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has published a new report entitled “Climate Change and Land“, presented today in Geneva, and addressed to the entire world population. According to the IPCC report, in fact, attempts to limit global warming merely by cutting emissions produced by energy plants, industrial production and transport are bound to fail: manufacturers, administrations and consumers need to review the whole food production system (from farming to animal breeding), as well as land management to move as far as possible towards sustainable management of natural resources.
The report, the result of over two years of work involving 107 experts from 52 countries all over the world, indicates that agriculture, forestry and other intensive land uses are responsible for 23% of all greenhouse gas emissions caused by human activity (13% of carbon dioxide, 44% of methane and 82% of nitrous oxide between 2007 and 2016). From 1961 to date, more than 3.2 million square kilometres of land, an area equivalent in size to Australia, have been converted for agricultural use. In just under sixty years, the farming sector has veered towards a more and more intensive use of land, with increasingly large-scale use of chemicals such as fertilisers, insecticides and pesticides, and a growing demand for water (around 70% of world consumption of water are used for farming) and energy resources. Animal breeding and rice fields are responsible for half the global emissions of methane, one of the most powerful greenhouse gases.
Certainly, one of the key points recommended by the report for fighting climate change is sustainable land management, which will be decisive for preventing the catastrophic effects of extreme climate events. Healthy land together with a flourishing biomass are indispensable for absorbing and stocking carbon dioxide.
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