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“Targeted Ecosystem Restoration Can Protect Climate, Biodiversity”

“A new study identifies vast areas of farm and cropland that could be converted back to natural conditions to protect species and store carbon.”

“There is no single silver bullet, like planting a trillion trees, to stop what scientists have identified as the twin threats of extreme climate disruption and biodiversity loss, but new research published today in the journal Nature shows that a holistic, global approach to healing ecosystems would be a big step in the right direction.

The study identifies restoration opportunities for forests, wetlands and grasslands that have been converted to farming or grazing areas, which degrades their value as habitat for threatened species, as well as their ability to absorb and store greenhouse gases. Many previous studies of nature-based climate solutions, including the massive tree-planting schemes, have focused more on individual types of ecosystems.

Protecting 30 percent of the priority areas identified by the new study could save the majority of mammals, amphibians and birds that are dying out and would soak up about 465 billion tons of carbon dioxide, equal to nearly half of the CO2 that has built up in the atmosphere since the start of the industrial age.”

Bob Berwyn reports for InsideClimate News October 14, 2020.