I was heartened to read an article The Independent that was reporting on an article in Nature. The apocalyptic headline “Humans are ushering in the sixth mass extinction of life on earth” was followed by the warning that “tens of thousands of species are now threatened with extinction. The number may or may not be accurate – have they counted them? – but most would agree that there is a major problem. Over-fishing, poaching, pollution and loss of habitat will result in the irreversible loss of species on a large scale.
Nothing very heartening in any of that, but the article goes on say that it “it was not inevitable that this process would continue”. The abstract from the original Nature article says; “Proactive international efforts to increase crop yields, minimize land clearing and habitat fragmentation, and protect natural lands could increase food security in developing nations and preserve much of Earth’s remaining biodiversity”.
All of this without the usual, lazy references to “Global Warming”. Whether the US administration dumps the Paris Accord or not makes next to no difference to the future of biodiversity. The Paris Acccord is about CO2 emissions. For all the virtue signalling that goes on in connection with CO2, there is no evidence that it raises temperatures in the real world (no temperature rise in the last 20 years), and it may even be beneficial (global greening).
I have blogged about this before and the whole CO2 footprint debate is a wretched distraction from the real issues so neatly summarised on the Nature abstract. If scientists and media are now turning away from flogging the CO2 horse, then that should hearten all of us.