After publishing research in journal Bioscience assessing how much of the earth’s terrestrial biosphere is protected, researchers are calling for a Global Deal for Nature. This deal, explain the authors, would “promote increased habitat protection and restoration, national - and ecoregion - scale conservation strategies, and the empowerment of indigenous peoples to protect their sovereign lands.” The central accord of the Global Deal for Nature is to protect 50% of Earth’s terrestrial biosphere.
Positioned by the researchers as a companion to the Paris Climate Accord, the idea of setting aside half of Earth’s land for protection is an elegant and appealing answer to earth’s ailing biosphere. While not a new idea, rapid and ever-more dior calls for action from the scientific community may give the idea the momentum required for global political will to sign such an accord. What would it take for nations with differing landscapes, economies, and politics to sign such an accord? More specifically, could post-industrialist, service-based economies set aside a larger share of land to to make up for nations with agricultural or industrial economies? Furthermore, would 50% of Earth’s land biosphere protected be enough?