Nature is part of the solution
But while nature is impacted by climate change, it’s also part of the solution. Nature has slowed global warming by absorbing 54% of human-related CO2 emissions over the past decade. And if we reduce deforestation, restore ecosystems, manage forests, help soil store more carbon, and improve farming techniques, nature can absorb even more. Nature offers protection as well. Healthy ecosystems can increase resilience and keep people safer from climate impacts. Coral reefs offer protection from storm surges, along with wetlands and mangroves. Forests also soak up excess rainwater, preventing run-offs, landslides, and damage from flooding.
We know the steps that governments, businesses, and all of us must take to stop climate change at or before 1.5ºC. We must cut global emissions by half by 2030, as well as enhance and restore healthy ecosystems.
Original figure: IPCC Synthesis Report SPM 2023 (led by Alex Ruane and Background Stories)
Warming stripes: Ed Hawkins