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Earth's Supply of Resources: How Much is Left?

2023-09-18
Nyelv:English
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On today's program, we’ll examine some of Earth’s critical resources teetering on the brink of exhaustion. The two most heavily consumed natural resources, water, and sand, are currently facing critical shortages. “Humanity's lifeblood, water is increasingly at risk around the world due to vampiric overconsumption and overdevelopment; that's the language used in the UN report.” “Ten percent of the global population currently lives in areas that are high or critical water stress.” “The UN says up to half the world's population doesn't have access to sanitation, and a quarter doesn't have access to a safe water supply.” “Most of us thought there's a lot of sand, so we've been using it like water or like air like it's never going to run out.” The pace at which we’re mining sand has become unsustainable, prompting the United Nations to sound the alarm about an impending “sand crisis.”

The world’s forests, our sources of oxygen and carbon storage, are shrinking at an alarming rate. “The losses include nearly four million hectares of tropical rainforest which are critical to capturing carbon dioxide. The rate of tropical deforestation last year was equivalent to 10 football pitches every single minute.”

Soil plays a crucial role in ensuring food security, preserving biodiversity and mitigating climate change, yet the world is facing an issue of soil depletion. “By 2050, soil erosion may reduce up to 10% of crop yields.” “There are places that have already lost all of their topsoil.” “What's happening to the soil, and what's happening today, is very scary.”

The world is facing a scarcity of metals used in various industries, including copper, iron, bauxite, and rare earth metals. Such unsustainable practices have dire implications for our planet's future. Experts warn of potential consequences in the coming decades, including mass extinctions, disruptive climate patterns, and the toxic contamination of our planet. These challenges pose profound threats to the delicate balance of ecosystems and the well-being of all life forms on Earth. To safeguard against natural resource depletion, adopting proactive conservation measures is imperative.
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