Our Best Energy Solution Could Hurt Biodiversity If We’re Not Careful

Right now, just 17% of the world’s energy comes from renewable The lion’s share still comes from planet-warming fossil fuels. It’s clear that we have to change that ratio quickly in order to curb greenhouse gas emissions and slow the climate crisis.

Curated via Twitter from Gizmodo’s twitter account….

The authors found that 8% of current and planned mining areas overlap with nationally designated protected areas, 7% with key biodiversity areas, and 16% with remaining wilderness sites, which are considered important priorities for halting biodiversity loss. “These places occur globally and are considered critical to the survival of many species already threatened by other stressors, like climate change,” Laura Sonter, lead author of the new study and Research Fellow at the University of Queensland, Brisbane, said in an email. “Mining in these place could add even more pressure.

These types of policies are crucial because we can’t solve the climate crisis by worsening the ecological one unfolding. “The good news is that our study suggests many of the required materials also exist outside areas important for biodiversity,” said Sonter. “To avoid the potential trade-offs between producing renewable energy and conserving species and ecosystems, we need to identify the sites and species most at risk and ensure new mines don’t inadvertently lead to their extinction.

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