Sourced from Sustainability Times
It’s 2050. You walk out of the house. The day is shiny but not too hot. You know that the mirrors in orbit around the planet that reflect back sunlight keep the climate just perfect. On the way to work, from the window of your self-driving floating solar module, you gaze over a plant installed a few years ago: it’s sucking excess carbon from the atmosphere and locks it into 3D-printed chairs, shoes, and other objects.
You get out of the module looking at the 72nd floor of a solar-powered skyscraper where you work and feel happy we have achieved all this, even though we didn’t manage to save most of the original coral reefs. We’ve also lost all the wild polar bears, adélie penguins and few thousand other species, while many countries globally have been hit hard by climate change. Still, it took us only two decades to get all the climate technology working. For a moment, you wonder: “Could this have been any different?”
Now back to 2019. You are just reading a piece on nature-based solutions. While some scientists say that geoengineering our future is the only way to secure a livable climate, others believe that even with all the technology available we should still learn to work with nature first. And they’ve got the facts and arguments to back up their stance. Nature-based (or simply “natural”) solutions have been around for millennia, but only recently have they started to emerge into concrete approaches within urban planning, finding wider support among scientists and decision makers worldwide.
The basic premise is this: we need to adapt together with nature, not apart from it. Proponents of the approach say that we should focus on mitigating negative impacts on ecosystems as a whole, helping them become more resilient in the face of environmental change. A similar concept of “ecosystem-based adaptation” suggests that we need to think how society and nature can adapt together, rather than focus on how these seemingly discrete entities will benefit from adaptation measures.