The United States has named its first plant and animal diplomat.
The newly created position of special envoy for biodiversity and water resources will be filled by attorney Monica Medina, who is currently the Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs at the Department of State.
The position was established in response to the growing climate catastrophe, which was declared last week. It is consistent with President Joe Biden’s desire to safeguard biodiversity both domestically and internationally.
“There is a direct connection between biodiversity loss and instability in a lot of parts of the world… It’s not just about nature for nature’s sake. I think it is about people,” Medina said in an interview.
The term “biodiversity” refers to all the various forms of life that can be found in a place. This covers all living things, including humans, animals, plants, fungus, and microbes.
“Each of these species and organisms works together in ecosystems, like an intricate web, to maintain balance and support life. Biodiversity supports everything in nature that we need to survive: food, clean water, medicine, and shelter,” according to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).
One of the greatest environmental calamities we are presently facing is the loss of biodiversity. Scientists warned that it might lead to an “ecological breakdown” in October of this year.
The study found that in order to prevent this calamity, biodiversity losses to nations need not exceed 90%. The average loss across all nations is almost 75%, and the UK has only about half of its original biodiversity.
Loss of biodiversity in the US
The nomination of Medina comes as the US experiences a major loss of biodiversity.
It is estimated that since 1970, North America has lost over 33% of its biodiversity.
The Convention on Biological Diversity, generally known as COP15, will be held in Montreal, Canada, in December. Its objective is for countries to ratify a global framework for biodiversity preservation.
According to reports, the US is expecting that the summit would result in nations promising to commit to preserve 30% of their land and water.
“We are looking for ways to reach that goal, because that’s what scientists tell us we need in order to have a healthy planet,” Medina stated.
By 2030, President Biden had previously set the target of preserving almost a third of the country’s land and water.
How are animal agriculture and biodiversity linked?
It may be argued that Biden’s strategy is constrained by his continuous support for the meat sector. The main cause of biodiversity loss has been shown to be the food system.
According to a UN report released the previous year, agriculture threatens 24,000 of the 28,000 (or 86%) species that are in danger of going extinct.
One of its key conclusions was the need for “plant-heavy” diets in the world’s food systems.
The “disproportionate impact of animal agriculture on biodiversity, land use, and the environment” is to blame for this, according to researchers.
“Such a shift, coupled with the reduction of global food waste, would reduce demand and the pressure on the environment and land, benefit the health of populations around the world, and help reduce the risk of pandemics,” the report added.
Source: “US Appoints First Ever Diplomat For Animals And Plants by Plant Based News”
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