Happy Healthy Hopeful and Inspiring New Year

Unsettled as 2022 has been, we close the year with gratitude, including for our Readers’ ongoing engagement and encouragement in following together with us in our climate action learning journey.

We are optimistic for the future, with clarity and a mix of confidence and humility to underpin our resolve to keep on our paths for more learning, changing and adapting behaviours to be ever more mindful of our footprint on Planet Earth—this home we share with 7.8 billion fellow humans and the contested estimates of anywhere from 8.7 million to 1 trillion other living species of plants and animals – and to honour our personal desire and commitment to do our part for a better, healthier, livable world for the generations who will follow in our footsteps, with any luck.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” (Margaret Mead, https://bit.ly/3jGvvBU)

The words of Margaret Mead resonate and inspire for the daunting effort still ahead to keep overall global warming to 1.5C. The real world action and impact of Adama Diémé, one everyday individual resolved to doing his part to make a difference in his corner of southern Senegal inspires us and renews our hope in our fellow humans and what is possible for moving ahead toward a brighter, carbon neutral future for all.

Ununukolaal – “Our Trees”

Mr Diémé was shocked to return to his village in southern Senegal and find an absence of trees where in his childhood they once had been lush along the Casamance River.  “With no great reserves of wealth, he began to raise money to make his dream a reality (to plant five million trees in five years) – and has used $5,000 from his own pocket to kick-start the initiative.” 

“Mr Diémé’s project is known as Ununukolaal, which in the local language Jola means ‘Our Trees’.” Read more in this BBC piece – BBC – https://bbc.in/3VKCAic

Historic Global Agreement for Nature, People and a Resilient World

Mr Diémé inspires us as an individual.

Fighting climate change and keeping global warming to 1.5C however, will take world-wide effort and cooperation, by individuals, organizations, governments of all levels, NGOs and the private sector, sustained for decades to come.

Protecting for global biodiversity is an inter-related and just as significant, urgent global challenge and call for transformational change in mindsets and practices, on behalf of ecosystems, humanity and a sustainable green global economy.

As 2022 draws to an end, we find hope and optimism for the future in the historic global agreement reached on December 19, 2022, in Montreal, Canada in the wrap up to COP15. Here is what the European Union (EU) reports on its website about the “Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework” – https://bit.ly/3jH1QIJ

“Early this morning at the UN Biodiversity conference COP15 in Montréal, Canada, the EU joined 195 countries in the historic Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework. This framework contains global goals and targets aiming to protect and restore nature for current and future generations, ensure its sustainable use as well as spur investments for a green global economy. Together with the Paris Agreement on climate, it paves the way towards a climate-neutral, nature-positive and resilient world by 2050.”

“The agreement is a solid framework with clear, measurable goals and targets, with complete monitoring, reporting, and review arrangements to track progress complemented by a robust resource mobilisation package.”

“More than half of global GDP depends on ecosystem services. 70% of the world’s most vulnerable people depend directly on wild species. The Kunming-Montreal agreement will accelerate ambitious policies around the world and mobilise financing for biodiversity from all sources – USD 200 billion per year by 2030. It commits the global community to actions to protect and restore nature and remove pollution – such as those that are part of the European Green Deal. This will ensure that nature continues sustaining societies, economies and communities for decades to come.”

Goals and targets for ambitious action by 2030 and 2050

“The Kunming-Montreal biodiversity agreement includes key global targets to:

  • Restore 30% degraded ecosystems globally (on land and sea) by 2030 Conserve and manage 30% areas (terrestrial, inland water, and coastal and marine) by 2030
  • Stop the extinction of known species, and by 2050 reduce tenfold the extinction risk and rate of all species (including unknown)
  • Reduce risk from pesticides by at least 50% by 2030
  • Reduce nutrients lost to the environment by at least 50% by 2030
  • Reduce pollution risks and negative impacts of pollution from all sources by 2030 to levels that are not harmful to biodiversity and ecosystem functions
  • Reduce global footprint of consumption by 2030, including through significantly reducing overconsumption and waste generation and halving food waste
  • Sustainably manage areas under agriculture, aquaculture, fisheries, and forestry and substantially increase agroecology and other biodiversity-friendly practices
  • Tackle climate change through nature-based solutions
  • Reduce the rate of introduction and establishment of invasive alien species by at least 50% by 2030
  • Secure the safe, legal and sustainable use and trade of wild species by 2030
  • Green up urban spaces.”

Mobilising finance and allow for business to take responsibility for biodiversity

“The deal will significantly increase the mobilisation of finance for biodiversity from all sources, domestic, international – both public and private – mobilising at least USD 200 billion per year by 2030. It will create incentives for domestic and international sources, including from business investment.”

“It also addresses subsidies harmful to biodiversity, with the commitment to identify by 2025 and eliminate by 2030 a total of at least USD 500 billion per year.”

“As part of the agreement, the EU subscribed to an international solidarity package, particularly for the most vulnerable countries and the most biodiverse. The new Global Biodiversity Framework Fund established under the Global Environment Facility will be open to financing from all sources.”

“In a major step to improve business action on biodiversity, large and transnational companies and financial institutions will be required to regularly monitor, assess and disclose risks, dependencies and impacts on biodiversity; and provide information to consumers to promote sustainable consumption.” To read more at the EU website – https://bit.ly/3jH1QIJ

Chihuly Glass and Garden Exhibition

We leave 2022 and look ahead to 2023 with a few quotes that we hope will inspire and close with images (and a plant list !) from the beautiful, shimmering, joyful Chihuly Glass and Garden space in Seattle to lift spirits and fire the imagination for growing (and/or travel) season 2023 ahead! (Stock photos above)

“As long as you have a garden you have a future and as long as you have a future you are alive.”
― Frances Hodgson Burnett (https://bit.ly/3i4Z2oh)

“To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow.”
― Audrey Hepburn (https://bit.ly/3jHAL8i)

“Chihuly has shown his artwork in botanical gardens all over the world, but this was his first time working with a landscape designer to create a space unlike that of any garden or exhibition elsewhere. The unique plant collection is specially chosen to complement Chihuly’s work and the striking colors and forms of the trees, plants, and flowers create a rich backdrop for the art. With an ever-changing, lush landscape, those who visit will enjoy a distinct experience with each new season.”  (https://bit.ly/3IcteZl)

Here is the link to the garden’s Master Plant list, where we were intrigued to find, and want to learn more about, perennials (among others) with names such as Fairy Wings, Kangaroo Plant, Mouse Plant and Dwarf Goat Beard. Enjoy and happy garden and/or travel planning 🙂 ! ( https://bit.ly/3VBxX9Y)

We wish everyone a Happy, Healthy, Hopeful and Awe-Inspiring New Year!

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