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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - RIYADH — The G20 environment ministers on Wednesday met to strengthen policy cooperation toward the reduction of land degradation and habitat loss, and the conservation of coral reefs to safeguard the planet’s ecosystems and biodiversity.
Stressing the importance of preserving the environment and building a more sustainable future, the G20 members discussed issues related to the conservation of the earth’s environment including land, oceans, and natural resources. They addressed protecting marine and terrestrial environments and working towards reducing marine pollution, especially marine plastic littering.
Coral reefs are some of the most diverse and valuable ecosystems on Earth but are under threat from pollution, disease, and habitat destruction. The ministers examined how best to conserve our coral reefs and ocean ecosystems to ensure the protection of a habitat that 25-50% of marine life depends on and helps protect communities from flooding.
G20 ministers also discussed how best to reduce land degradation and conserve biodiversity. Around 12 million hectares of land are lost annually due to land degradation, causing significant environmental and socioeconomic damage - impacting more than three billion people.
During the meeting, chaired by Saudi Arabia's Minister of Environment, Water and AgricultureAbdulrahman Al-Fadhli, ministers acknowledged conservation, cooperation, research, and innovation as essential to tackling the current challenges to safeguard the planet and preserve the environment.
The COVID-19 pandemic along with climate challenges calls for a commitment to build a more sustainable and prosperous future for all. Aligned with the ambition of the Saudi G20 Presidency to safeguard the planet, ministers also stressed the central role of sustainable management of natural resources to protect the planet and to restore growth.
The ministers recognized the discussions leading up to the meeting today and look forward to continuing their work towards a sustainable future for all. — SPA
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