The Natural World is Fading Before Our Eyes: only together can we change this
Updated: Oct 9
It is so often that Sir David Attenborough inspires me, his incredible career has stirred my whole life towards environmental activism. However, this morning upon inspection of his new Instagram page, his words in-fact filled me with utter dread, as he exclaimed “the natural world is fading” and how the destruction of our natural world will become the “story of how we came to make this our greatest mistake".
These words have stayed with me and ever since I have felt a very deep pang of cold dismay. I don’t remember feeling quite so hollow about the exceptional predicament that our entire world hangs in and how much of our magical natural world we are losing every-day now. Every day I wake up and think what on earth are we doing to the place that we all call home.
(Over 150,000 organutans have disappeared from Borneo in the last 15 years) (Credit: Orangutan Rescue)
Things are in every reliable sense of the word “traumatic”, we have lost 68% of all wildlife since only 1970, 1 million species are threatened with extinction and ravaging climate change threatens our entire existence. I don’t exaggerate very much when I say that this is the greatest threat that our civilisation has ever faced, and once we hit the certain tipping points that scientists are warning us about, it is a crisis in which we will never be able to reverse and one in which will be completely outside of our control.
(Forest fires continue to ravage through the Amazon Rainforest (Credit: New York Times)
Yet, the crisis that we are in, is hardly ever spoken about, hardly ever featured in the mainstream media or hardly ever debated by our politicians.
As such, we find ourselves in a truly awful predicament, where the world seems more interested about what comes out of Donald Trumps’ Twitter account than they do about the callous destruction of our planet. A threat which threatens 7.8bn people on earth. It is often hard not to feel a sense of utter hopelessness and despair about the future because in the end nothing is going to matter, if we don’t have a planet left for it to matter on.
Yet despite all of this, it is imperative that we must continue to do all that we can to pave the way for a more sustainable future. Whilst it appears that our global leaders have vacated their primary responsibility to safeguard our future, millions of people from around the world are galvanised and passionate about acting on this issue.
To service this, I strongly believe that we need to adopt a new approach to save our natural world, one where everyone, from every background and walk of life, can actively be part of the solution. That is why at the Conservation Project International we are passionate about breaking down the barriers of entry to conservation and providing everyone with the opportunity to learn more about the critical issues facing our natural world, can join a global community of passionate environmentalists and get directly involved in critical conservation projects.
(After decades of persecution, Humpback whale numbers are now bouncing back)
It is now time that we also dramatically transform the entire conservation sector, where we drive innovation and collaboration through the heart of everything that we do and work with civil society and the private sector to support the most impactful and critical conservation efforts.
It is as my friend Sanjana says “it’s insane that every single effort in the world is not being put towards solving these issues, we need a massive mobilisation and no more business as usual, until this is business as usual”.
As such, there is still hope, we just need the right platform, the right tools, and the right leadership that can bring everyone together to truly change the course of human history.
By Harry Wright, CEO of The Conservation Project International