- Global Climate Scenario
- Causes and effect of poor Land management
- Suggestion for better land management
- International groups on climate change
A new ethics for a sustainable planet
For IASToppers’ Editorial Simplified Archive, click here
- Brazil’s Amazon forests are ablaze with dozens of fires, most of them set intentionally by loggers and others seeking greater access to forest land.
- While European leaders and civil society are organizing protests to oppose policies that encourage the fires, the Brazilian President said that they are an internal matter and that fire was actually started by the non-governmental organisations.
Global Climate Scenario
- In 2017, the US withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement stating that it is against the national interests of the U.S.
- British Prime Minister has spoken in favor of as well as against climate change. Britain received funding from climate science denial groups while saying that it would lobby U.S. to take climate change more seriously.
- Moreover, many cities in Europe and elsewhere are seeing sever heat waves, that also accelerated melting of glaciers in Greenland at a rate that was not anticipated by scientific models until much later this century.
Causes and effect of poor Land management
- While energy and transport are mainly responsible for the accumulation of greenhouse gases (GHGs) in the atmosphere, changes in land use patterns too have made significant contributions.
- Deforestation, industrial agricultural systems and desertification are major drivers of climate change.
- Agriculture, forestry and other land use activities accounted for 23% of the total net anthropogenic emissions of GHGs between 2007-2016.
- The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recently brought out a special report on ‘Climate Change and Land’ stating that unless land is managed in a sustainable manner, the chance that humanity will survive climate change will become smaller.
- Decades of poor land management resulted in depletion of land minerals with heavy use of chemicals and farms have few or no beneficial insects.
- Moreover, monoculture has led to a reduction in the use of indigenous crop varieties with useful characteristics, groundwater is depleted and polluted farm runoffs are contributing to contaminated water bodies while destroying biodiversity.
Suggestion for better land management
- Avoiding conversion of grassland to cropland
- Bringing in equitable management of water in agriculture
- Crop diversification
- Agroforestry and investment in local and indigenous seed varieties that can withstand higher temperatures
- Practices that increase soil carbon and reduce salinisation
- Establishing sustainable food systems (reducing food waste)
- eating locally grown food and cutting meat consumption
- Put an end to deforestation, while conserving mangroves, peatland and other wetlands
- Land use policy should include better access to markets for small and marginal farmers, empower women farmers, expand agricultural services and strengthen land tenure systems.
International groups on climate change
- There have been successful civil society movements that have promote sustainable farming and positive climate change, for example, La Via Campesina, The Transition Network, Great Transition Initiative and Ecoregionalism.
- More recently, Fridays for Future and Fossil Fuel Divestment are part of such evolving sensibilities.
- The burning of the world’s largest forest reserves, the withdrawal of the world’s leading polluter from a major international treaty and the U.K.’s isolationist policies may appear to be the triumph of nationalist ideology. But these actions have consequences impacting all creatures that share life on the planet.
- There is a need for new ethics that supports alternative systems for the future, cultivates the growth of ecological sensibilities, enhances quality of life and creates new identities and cultures that transcend conventional boundaries.