The Wildlife and Nature Protection Society (WNPS) monthly lecture series which is now online will focus on “Biodiversity, Climate Change and Land Degradation: what is happening, why should we care, and how should we respond” on 18 June at 6.00 p.m. onwards via zoom and FB Live.
The subject will be covered by one of the most influential environmental scientists worldwide, former Chair of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services Sir Robert Watson.
We have both a scientific and social emergency. Climate change, loss of biodiversity and land degradation are not only environmental issues, but are development, economic, social, security, moral and ethical issues. Human-induced climate change, loss of biodiversity land degradation are undermining human well-being – they need to be addressed together – now. Current Government and private sector actions are totally inadequate to meet the Paris climate targets or the Aichi biodiversity targets. Climate change, loss of biodiversity and land degradation undermine the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Transformative changes are needed – cost effective and socially acceptable response options are available – is there the political will. While COVID-19 is a serious global pandemic with significant loss of life and economic implications, the consequences of climate change and loss of biodiversity are even more serious for the globe.
The career of speaker Sir Robert Tony Watson, CMG, FRS, has included scientific advisor in the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), White House; chief scientist, World Bank; chief scientific advisor, UK Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs; and strategic director for the Tyndall Centre, University of East Anglia, UK. He chaired, co-chaired or directed the WMO/UNEP stratospheric ozone depletion assessments, Global Biodiversity Assessment, Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, UK National Ecosystem Assessment and its Follow-on, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the Intergovernmental Assessment of Agricultural Scientific and Technology for Development, and the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services. His awards include a Knights Bachelor in 2012, Companion of the Order of Saint Michael and Saint George in 2003; Fellow of the Royal Society in 2011, member of the American Philosophical Society (2020), UN Champion of the World for Science and Innovation in 2014, the Asahi Glass Blue Planet Prize in 2010.
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