ProVeg supports the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration
5 June 2021
In 2020, ProVeg applied to support the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration and we are very happy to announce that we will officially be supporting the initiative. The Decade will officially kick off with World Environment Day on 5 June. The Decade runs from 2021 through 2030 – which is also the deadline for achieving the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This is a rallying call for the protection and revival of ecosystems all around the world, which are currently under threat and face enormous pressure from human activities. In order to help amplify the activities around the process, ProVeg has become a supporter of the Decade.
What are ‘International Decades’?
The United Nations designates specific days, weeks, years, and decades as occasions to mark particular events or topics, and promotes these events through awareness campaigns, specific objectives, and actions around the SDGs. Member states can make suggestions. If these suggestions are passed, they are then adopted as resolutions by the UN General Assembly.
The emergence of a novel zoonotic disease is a highly complex process, involving many factors. Yet, there is compelling evidence that certain human activities strongly increase the likelihood of such developments. Three aspects of human behaviour are particularly devastating – all of which have to do with human-animal interactions in the context of food.
How ProVeg will support the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration
There are three key ways for organisations to support the UN Decade:
- First, helping to build a global movement by raising awareness around the impact of our food systems through our various partners and networks.
- Secondly, generating political support by influencing decision-makers on all levels as well as publishing and disseminating articles on the relevant topics.
- Finally, building technical capacity by ensuring a strong political outreach, both within and outside of our networks, and actively participating in international events such as UNEA-5, the Convention on Biological Diversity, and COP26.
We couldn’t live without forests. Covering one third of the earth’s land mass, they’re vital to sustaining life on our planet and slowing down climate change. Forests are key to climate, water, health and livelihoods, yet we’re losing them at an alarming rate due to deforestation – the mass destruction of trees. One of the leading causes of deforestation globally is animal agriculture, which is why a plant-based diet can help.
An important milestone to protect ecosystems worldwide
Protection of ecosystems is not only essential for other species but also for humankind – and it is our lifestyles that are largely responsible for ecosystem loss. The UN estimates that between now and 2030, the restoration of 350 million hectares of degraded terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems could generate US$9 trillion in ecosystem services. Restoration could also remove 13 to 26 gigatons of greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. The economic benefits of such interventions exceed the cost of investment by ten times, whereas inaction is at least three times more costly than ecosystem restoration.1 This clearly makes the importance of ecosystem restoration a no-brainer.
ProVeg is looking forward to contributing to the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration in order to help achieve the SDGs and build a better world.
The work of UN Environment is becoming increasingly important as topics such as biodiversity loss, soil erosion, and deforestation finally gain traction in the public and political spheres.