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15 biggest environmental problems of 2024

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By illuminem briefings

· 2 min read

illuminem summarizes for you the essential news of the day. Read the full piece on Earth.Org or enjoy below:

🗞️ Driving the news: The 15 biggest environmental problems currently facing our planet include:
1. Global Warming From Fossil Fuels: 2023 was the hottest year on record, with CO2 levels highest in 6,000 years
2. Poor Governance: Ineffective climate policies and market failures, like inadequate carbon taxes
3. Food Waste: A third of food intended for consumption is wasted, contributing to a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions.
4. Biodiversity Loss: Rapid decline in wildlife populations due to human activities.
5. Plastic Pollution: Escalating plastic waste in oceans, with 91% of all plastic not recycled.
6. Deforestation: Loss of forests at alarming rates, with significant impacts on ecosystems. 
7. Air Pollution: Millions of deaths annually from air pollution, with worsening conditions in urban areas. 
8. Melting Ice Caps and Sea Level Rise: Accelerating ice melt leading to rising sea levels
9. Ocean Acidification: Increased carbon dioxide absorption causing harm to marine ecosystems
10. Agriculture: A significant source of greenhouse gas emissions, consuming vast freshwater resources.
11. Food and Water Insecurity: Rising temperatures and unsustainable farming threatening food and water supply.
12. Fast Fashion and Textile Waste: Fashion industry's high carbon emissions and water pollution.
13. Overfishing: Depletion of fish stocks, affecting biodiversity and human livelihoods.
14. Cobalt Mining: Environmental and social issues in cobalt production, essential for EV batteries. 
15. Soil Degradation: Loss of soil fertility, threatening food security.

🔭 The context: These environmental challenges are interconnected, impacting climate, biodiversity, human health, and the global economy. Immediate and effective action is required to mitigate these issues

🌍 Why it matters for the planet: Addressing these problems is crucial for maintaining ecological balance, ensuring sustainable development, and preserving the planet for future generations

⏭️ What's next: Global efforts must focus on sustainable practices, policy reforms, and technological innovations to tackle these environmental crises.

💬 One quote: "Unless immediate action is taken, there is an impending global food security emergency." - UN Secretary-General António Guterres.

📈 One stat: More than 1.3 billion tons of food, enough to feed 3 billion people, is wasted annually.

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