President Warns World Is Losing Biodiversity 10,000 Times Faster Than 100 Years Ago


October 6, 2023


Dignitaries during the Opening Ceremony (L-R): Naseer Ahamed, Minister of Environment, Sri Lanka; Ranil Wickremesinghe, President, Sri Lanka; Anil Jasinghe, Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Sri Lanka; and Elizabeth Maruma Mrema, Deputy Executive Director, UNEP

The world has lost eight per cent of the known animal species to science, observed President Ranil Wickremesinghe at the opening of the Ministerial Segment of the Fifth Forum of Ministers and Environment Authorities of Asia Pacific which concluded in Colombo on Thursday.

President Wickremesinghe also said that another 22 per cent of animal species are at a risk of extinction due to the destruction of their natural habitats and invasions.

The world is losing biodiversity ten thousand times faster than 100 years ago, he said.

The President also said that considering climate change, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has estimated that global warming may increase by 1.5% more than the current level between 2030 and 2052.

Environment Minister Eng. Naseer Ahamed said that Stockholm+50 has emphasized the global inter connectedness of the environment and the need to collectively address the three planetary environmental crises of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution – for present and future generations.

The Stockholm+50 called for greater accountability to deliver on national and international responsibilities and address the three planetary environmental crises in integrated ways.

Reinforce and reinvigorate the multilateral system, through ensuring an effective rules based multilateral system that supports countries in delivering on their national and global commitments, to ensure fair and effective multilateralism, strengthening the environmental rule of law, including by promoting convergence and synergies within the United Nations system and between multilateral environmental agreements.

Cooperation by all actors is essential to accelerate the transfer of knowledge, technology, and know-how, and to scale up the availability and access to and affordability of digital goods and services and critical infrastructure in developing countries, the Minister said. (Picture courtesy IISD)